Slinky

Slinky

Everyone knows the Slinky. Beloved by children and physics teachers alike, this toy debuted in 1945 and has yet to ever slink away. Odds are good that every kid had at least one Slinky during their lifetime and if they didn’t actually own one, they’ve certainly played with one owned by somebody else. How did a simple metal coil become such a childhood icon? Let's take a look back at this marvelous toy and find out. Continue reading...

Slip-n-Slide

Slip ‘N Slide

Peering jealously over the fence at the neighbor’s nice big pool became a thing of the past with the Slip ‘n Slide. When the summer weather was scorching hot and the beach was an inconvenient distance away, kids found cool relief along a runway made of plastic. Hooked up to the garden hose, the runway magically transformed into the wettest, most slippery surface ever devised by man. Continue reading...

Sly-and-the-Family-Stone

Sly and the Family Stone

In the late 60s, perhaps the most positive change in the music industry was that age-old genre barriers were finally starting to crumble. The days of segregating the styles of rock, country, folk, soul and R&B were coming to an end and the result was an exciting new era of musical exploration. At the forefront of this melding of styles was Sly and the Family Stone, a group instrumental in defining, then refining, the funk sound. By infusing elements of pop, rock and psychedelica into a heavy R&B rhythmic foundation, the band created some of the most energetic and grooving hits of the era. And leading the charge in these defining times, was the creative talent of Sly Stone. Continue reading...

Smarties

Smarties

You've just spent the evening knocking on neighborhood doors, your pillowcase or plastic jack o' lantern gradually filling with sweets. Upon your return home, you dump out the rewards of your labor and scan your hard-earned bounty. Like every other kid who has ever performed this ritual, you are apt to come across a few rolls of cellophane-wrapped candies called Smarties. Both sweet and tangy, with a distinct powdery consistency, they have remained a Halloween tradition for over six decades. Continue reading...

Smokey Bear

Smokey Bear

With World War II raging away, natural resources needed protection at all costs. A forest fire could be devastating in terms of lost lumber. The government handed a very special bear the task of informing the public about the dangers of fire and the need for watchful vigilance. And for over 60 years, he has proven himself worthy of the task. He is Smokey Bear and his contributions to the war effort and beyond have made him a legend. Continue reading...

Sno-Cone Machines

Sno-Cone Machines

At the end of the day, when playing is over and done with, you put your toys away and then what? You have nothing to show for it, no lasting reminder of a day’s hard work. Manufacturing something while still managing to have fun would well and truly validate your childhood. And if that something was edible, the venture would be win-win. Sno-Cone Machines debuted in 1967 and combined the best attributes of toydom. Brightly colored, shaped like a snowman, noisy, soggy and syrupy, Hasbro’s first sno-cone factory was a guaranteed hit. Continue reading...

Snowball Fights

Snowball Fights

There are few times when a kid can throw a projectile at someone without admonishment. Once a sufficient blanket of snow has fallen, however, the rules change. The potential for war looms behind thick trees and parked cars and any other place that offers momentary cover. Attacks come with no warning, nor mercy. Negotiations are futile, retribution is a no-brainer. Let's face it - it wouldn't be winter without a snowball fight. Continue reading...

Sorry!

Sorry!

The ancient game of strategy called Parcheesi got a modern makeover in the early 20th century, emerging as Sorry! the game that apologized for your woeful lack of skill and/or good fortune. First seen in England, it was imported to America in 1934 by Parker Brothers and a new family institution was born. Hearing your mom saying "Sorry!" in a saccharine, condescending voice as she denied you victory was enough to make you wonder if the notion of motherly love wasn't just a big crock. Continue reading...