Showing posts with label School Fads. Show all posts
Showing posts with label School Fads. Show all posts

Monday, June 20, 2011

Classroom Games or, how our teachers used up the endless minutes they couldn’t fill with educational material

It’s amazing how some childhood experiences can transcend both generations and state lines. I grew up over 1000 miles from my current residence, yet somehow all of my teacher friends here utilize most of the same games and time fillers I knew when I was a child. Either there is some super elaborate network of teacher communication that has been going strong for the last few decades or those who work with children aren’t always as creative as they like to think.

Whatever the reason, any good teacher or substitute always had a few of these classroom games up their sleeve to fill a dreaded five or ten minute gaps in the daily routine. To their credit, these brave adults were essentially locked in an airtight room with us for eight hours a day; even the most innovative of educators has trouble filling a few minutes here or there with no designated activity. In order to fill the void, our crafty teachers utilized some of the following games to keep us organized and discourage general classroom chaos:

Heads Up, Seven Up

Heads up, seven up is like the gold standard in classroom games: everyone played it and everyone inexplicably believed it was worthwhile. There is no real point to the game, but kids eat it up regardless. Many of us spent the better part of our youths with our foreheads pressed firmly against our wooden desks, thumb extended heavenward, obeying silently as a teacher or classmate ordered us, “Heads down, thumbs up!”

The seven lucky chosen ones circulate the room, each pressing down a single classmate’s thumb. Then “Heads up, seven up!” is called, and the players (who mostly cheat mercilessly with glances at shoes) attempt to guess who pushed their thumb. Some people would use tricky tactics like pressing lighter or harder than would be characteristically associated with them, but in general there’s very little chance we could blindly guess at who pushed our thumb.

Hot or Cold

Especially popular with young children, our teachers probably liked Hot or Cold because it was so time consuming. A student would leave the room and the teacher would hide an item somewhere in the classroom. When the student re-entered, the class would direct them toward the hidden item by rating each movement as either “Warm” “Hot” “Cool” or “Cold.” If your teacher was good at hiding things this process could take quite a bit of time, thus keeping us busy for as long as they needed.

Quiet Game

Ah, the quiet game. Is there no moment more satisfying to a teacher than to have tricked his or her entire class into being silent under the ruse of a game? It’s not a game; it’s just being quiet, but someone wins and most kids lose. For some reason, it remains an effective way to silence children in public or on long car trips. There doesn’t even need to be a prize. Just declare someone the “winner,” and children will continue to compete for your attention.

Around the World
At the very least, Around the World was more educational than the other distractions on this list. Usually played with math or other easily flashcardable facts, two students compete to offer the correct answer first. The loser sits back down in the seat, and the winner goes on to battle his or her classmates at flashcard mastery. Teachers used varying rules, but usually whoever made it all the way around the classroom was awarded some sort of prize and tricked into learning multiplication tables.


If you think too carefully about it, hangman is a pretty morbid premise for a children’s game. On the upside, we had a chance to practice writing and spelling, but on the downside, the poor man has to be hanged for your inability to guess letters correctly. For those of us who were really horrible at Hangman, our teachers would offer us consolatory hats and ties and other hanged man accessories to further delay ending the game before we finally solved the puzzle. Little did they know they were also setting us up for a lifetime of being awesome at yelling the correct answers out at Wheel of Fortune.

Silent Ball

Kind of like the Quiet Game with a Nerf Ball, Silent Ball was another crafty ploy by our clever teachers to keep us from chatting during downtime. Students stand near their desks and throw the ball quietly to each other. Any bass passes, out-of-bounds throws, or missed catches led to an “out,” meaning you had to sit down in your seat. The last students standing were the winners, but the true winner was the teacher, seeing as how she had figured out how to adapt the Quiet Game for older, less gullible students.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

80s and 90s Back to School Checklist: School Supply Trends

It’s that time of year again. You know the one: the time for back-to-school shopping and all the fresh-smelling new school supplies your child-sized heart can fathom. It’s tough as adults to deny the covetousness we feel when passing the mid-to-late August back-to-school displays at Target or OfficeMax. Even former low-performing students with an aversion to all things academic feel the allure of freshly sharpened pencils and shiny new folders; they symbolize an anticipation for a year that’s tough to match as a grown-up as the seasons blend together in ubiquitous office life.

Though we can’t go back to those simpler times in which colorful erasers could denote immeasurable promise and potential, we can at least reminisce about the items that gave us that rush of August or September excitement. I even give you full license to stop at that school supply display next time you’re out shopping and buy a 45 cent puppy folder or two--it’s a small price to pay to recapture the delight of back-to-school items like these.

Trapper Keepers

No back-to-school supply list would be complete without a big binder to hold it all together, and no binder proved more popular in the 80s and 90s than the Trapper Keeper. With its flashy licensed designs and velcro closure, it served as the perfect all-purpose paper holder for school-age children.

Lisa Frank Folders

We’ve talked about Lisa Frank merchandise a lot here at Children of the 90s, and with good reason: it was everywhere. You couldn’t open a girl’s backpack in the mid-90s without finding a store inventory-level variety of Lisa Frank paraphernalia. Most little girls have a natural inclination toward loving colorful kittens playfully canoodling with high top sneakers or bunny rabbits laced tightly into ballet slippers. Lisa Frank simply played into this scientifically proven fact with major financial results.

Sanrio Erasers
All kids need to clean up after their mistakes, so what better way to do so than with an eraser printed with the whimsical Japanese Sanrio characters? Whether you were a Kerroppi fan or a Batz Maru fiend, these collectable erasers usually found their way into your pencil box.

Yikes! Pencils

Yikes! Pencils were all the rage in the early-to-mid 90s. As the above commercial suggests, Yikes are the only pencils as unique as you. Even though everyone else had them. Aside from that minor detail, the commercial tagline says it all: “They write like other pencils, but they make you go, ‘Yikes!’”

Pencil Cases

Of course, you had to store all of these supplies somewhere: your cubby wasn’t going to organize itself. Selection of the perfect pencil case was always a good way to kick off a new year. It was important to set the tone with a colorful translucent plastic case textured with bumps or perhaps the more sensible opaque case bearing a picture of--you guessed it--pencils. There’s something to be said for taking things literally.

Gel Pens
Following the release of gel pens, it seemed all art supply and office stores immediately had the best colors placed on backorder. The reason? Young children purchased these writing utensils nearly as quickly as they were shelved. With fun metallic or signature “milky” colors, gel pens were a fairly certain way to render your eventual yearbook inscriptions both sparkly and indecipherable.


Lunchables aren’t exactly a school supply per se, but they were a staple for earning some serious cafeteria clout. Parents concerned with nutrition and possessing general anti-junk food attitudes weren’t likely to be found of these lab-generated Oscar Meyer concoctions, but parents short on time seeking convenience surely appreciated their simplicity. They may not have borne especial resemblance to real food, but they were fun to assemble and devour. Plus, the fancier versions came complete with fun size candy bar and Capri Sun juice box. What more could you have asked for?

Pencil Toppers
For those of us who couldn’t decide between toys and school supplies, pencil toppers provided us an excellent middle ground. Teachers undoubtedly despised these unnecessary distractions for their complete lack of functionality, but kids adored the notion of their pencils wearing a little Troll doll hat. Adorable.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Gym Class Parachute Day

Ah, parachute day. Whether you were a budding star elementary athlete or one of the designated indoor kids, the parachute was a universally appealing gym class apparatus. Something about those glorious primary colors had the power to put children under some sort of enchanted parachute spell, mesmerizing them with its rhythmic movement and waves of red, blue, and yellow. Throw in the fact that we each had our very own handle and this was a participatory physical education dream. The responsibility was great, sure, but the excitement of playing a role in the billowing of the giant parachute was infinitely greater.

It just goes to show that it doesn’t take flashy or expensive equipment to delight a child and pique his curiosity. These parachutes were extremely simple in design and use, yet they rarely failed to entertain us during a vigorous physical education hour. Perhaps it’s a bit of a stretch to label it as actual exercise, but maybe all that arm flapping gave us some sort of low-level workout. As long as it tired us out enough for naptime, our caregivers were more than satisfied.

Just in case you haven’t brushed up on your gym class parachute activities in a few years, here is a handy guide to some of the many magical games offered by this overhyped nylon bedsheet with handles.

Making Waves

Even the youngest Gymboreers can take part in this one, assuming they have the ability to grasp the handle and wave their arms maniacally. To create waves, all the children in class simply have to pick up a handle and shake vigorously. The parachute billows back and forth, the kids ooh and aah in amazement, and the teacher sneaks out back for a smoke.


I actually believe we may have called this maneuver “Mushroom Cloud,” but that’s probably just a tad too morbid to fathom for five-year old children. “Hey kids! Isn’t this just like an atomic explosion?”

In this exercise, all children have to obediently pull their handle up and over themselves to retain a bubble of air in the center. It’s like a little fort, only much more colorful and slightly awesomer. Plus all your friends are there. I kind of want to stage a Jellyfish right now, it sounds 100% preferable to a day at the office.

Variation: Washing Machine

Make a Jellyfish/Mushroom configuration, but allow the kids to shake crazily while inside. If it’s not realistic enough, feel free to put them in an actual washing machine.


Insert sports ball in center of parachute. Grab handles, shake like maniacs. Commence in delight at rubber balls popping in air. Repeat ad nauseum. Seriously, children never tire of this. You could do it forever.

Shark Attack

The details on this one varied from school to school, but the game universally included screams of bloodcurdling terror. Two children are selected as sharks, the equivalent of “It” in a game of tag. All the other children place their legs under the parachute as the sharks attempt to pull them under in Jaws-like attack mode. Good news is, once you were eaten, you magically became a shark who got to eat swimmers, too. You know, just like in real life.

Merry Go Round

This activity leads me to believe our teachers were fairly sadistic and all had a good laugh in the breakroom at making us dance like obedient trained monkeys. Everyone grabs the handles and the teacher calls out a movement, like “Skip!” or “Run!” The kids run wildly in a circle until they collapse in a pile of heavy-breathing exhaustion.

All Change/All Switch

Here’s a good way to check if your students know their birthdays or which letter of the alphabet begins their name. Make them all hold the chute tightly above them, then call out a command like “Everyone with June birthdays, switch!” The idea was to allow everyone to switch before the parachute fell, but there was always some kid without a June birthday who’d tackle the parachute to the ground before they had a chance to try. Jerk.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Gel Pens

If you have noticed, we over here at Children of the 90s have been pretty caught up in the back-to-school spirit. There's something about fall that brings all of us 90s nostalgianiks right back to our frantic scrambling office-supply store shopping trips. We would all try to use our intuition and summer-accumulated wisdom to buy the most coveted back-to-school items, but there was little way of knowing whether your choice was going to sink or swim in the classroom implement hierarchy. It's a cruel world, and we might as well have learned it at a young age. There's nothing quite like ridicule and public shaming over what we were toting in our pencil cases. It's probably what's turned us into the humble adults we are today.

The problem with school supply trends was that we could hardly look to fashion magazines for our social cues on what to buy. Instead, we had to simply hold our collective breath and hope that whatever we'd haplessly shoved into our OfficeMax carts was the wise choice. Would Yikes Pencils be in or out? Would Clueless's Cher's feather pen still be the highly coveted item of the back-to-school season, or were Troll pencil toppers the way to go? It was enough to etch premature wrinkles into our juvenile brows.

There are, however, some school supplies that spoke for themselves. When we saw them in the store, we simply knew we had to have them. They had a value all their own, not only because they were popular, but because they had real appeal. Not to mention we knew deep down, even from a young age, that if one of these babies would set our parents back $2 a pop versus the fifty cents or so they'd shell out for a regular pen they just had to be great. After all, the pricers wouldn't lie to us. They know real value, and we had to be prepared to pay for it.

Gel pens quickly became a veritable writing implement phenomenon, flooding into middle school desks everywhere with a barrage of metallic colors. These things were legitimately impressive, for school supplies. We had never seen this type of performance before in a pen, nor had we particularly cared when it came in the drab shades of blue and black favored by rival pen producers. Gelly Rolls, though, these things were impressive. Not only did they come in a vast spectrum of visually appealing shiny colors, but they could write on all sorts of surfaces! What more could you ask for?

Sure, our parents were probably less than pleased when we came home with homeroom-drawn gelly roll tattoos graffiti-ing our bodies, but at least it was still a step above opting for permanent ink. My mother unleashed upon me a slew of old-wives' tales of how the ink would permeate my skin and lead to all sorts of terrifying blood poisoning, but I saw right through it. Well, I did at first. My vision started to blur after the fourth or fifth day, now that I think about it. I'm sure it's just a coincidence.

Gel pens had pretty incredible powers, really. For one, they could write on black paper. I know, I know. Maybe I should give a minute to let that sink in. Black paper. Have you ever heard of such a thing? I know I hadn't, until I bought a colored multi-pack that came complete with a pad of black paper. I sat there staring at my new acquisition, thinking, Why, it just can't be. How can a pen write on a piece of black paper? I couldn't quite wrap my head around it, but suffice it to say I was sold. Yearbook signing would never be the same.

There were a few prototypes in particular that particularly astonished, amazed, and amused us. I wrote many an origami-folded note to my friends, imploring them "W/B/S" (write back soon) and declaring my feelings via LYLAS (love ya like a sister). Among the most popular on the market were:

Gelly Roll

These were truly the original impressive gel pen. They were so shiny. Really, just so so shiny. My mind is riddled with mental ADD at the mere thought of them, so just imagine the effect they had on real live kids attempting to take notes with their sparkly, sparkly ink. Ooh, sparkly. I'm sorry, what were we talking about here?


Though now the name sort of makes me want to vomit, in middle school we were completely enamored with these pastel-hued pens. These things drew on everything, leaving no drawable surface on my body, clothing, and schoolwork untouched by the magic of their soft hues.

Marble Ink

Described by their manufacturers as "a milkshake of colors", these pens were a teacher's worst nightmare. To receive a handwritten essay that gradually shifted from one end of the color spectrum to the next and back again was nothing short of a grading nightmare. Kids were certainly entertained by them, though, so it would take more than simple chastisements to stop us. We had pen rights, dammit, and we were prepared to exercise them, color-induced nausea aside.

Sure, there were a few kinks in the process. Namely, when the inkwell in the pen's core began to go dry, these things were nearly impossible to write with. You'd scratch through your paper just trying to get some color out of it. And don't even get me started on the moments of gel overload. Believe me, these splotches were not pretty. Okay, they were kind of pretty, but that's not the point. It's hard to take an algebra answer seriously when half of the equation is obscured by a giant shimmering pink blob you're forced to turn into a flower to make it less conspicuous.

Regardless of their minor flaws, these babies were golden. And silver. And bronze, and well, you get the idea. My technicolor-dreampen-case was brimming with shimmery, shiny colors and for a brief moment in time, it was enough to hold my attention and entertain me in class. If only I could get as worked up about office supplies now. It's hard to picture me hugging my stapler or spooning with the fax machine, but I'm willing to give it a try. What can I say? I'm a dreamer.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Children of the 90s Ultimate Classroom Distractions

While today teachers are battling the ever-mounting presence of technology in their classrooms, they're certainly not facing a new demon. Sure, kids these days are lacing their iPod earbuds surreptitiously through their hooded sweatshirts and sending text messages in lieu of passing paper notes, but it's generally in the same spirit of general classroom unruliness that came with all preceding generations. Don't think for one minute that all those iPhone-confiscating teachers aren't reading those forbidden texts every bit the same as ours were reading our discarded notes.

Growing up, we certainly were never wanting for in-class stimulation. Unfortunately for our teachers, however, very little of that stimulation came from reading, writing, and/or 'rithmetic. Instead, it more often than not came from the innumerable devices and distractions we utilized in lieu of sitting still and paying attention. Some were store bought, others homemade, but regardless of their origins these distracting devices held our attention during the times we probably should have been learning something. Heck, if it weren't for Silly Putty, I might even know how to do long division. Maybe.

Not all of these are exclusive to children of the 90s, but we certainly carried on a tradition of undercover classroom tomfoolery that would make even the most deviant of past generation students smile. We may not have grown up with all the technology available to today's young students, but we certainly made up for it in imagination and misused innovation. Here are just a few of the many, many classroom distractions that so often kept us from learning the math and science our nation's young people so sorely needed:

Fortune Tellers

I know, I know, these things go way back. Some may know them by their alias/alter-ego Cootie Catchers, these babies date back from the middle of the last century, with generations of schoolchildren everywhere entertaining themselves with their origami goodness and fortune-telling powers. The concept behind them was simple, though the construction was nothing short of a marketable skill. Typically, certain folds were decorated with numbers, letters, or colors, while the inside creases were scrawled with fortunes.

Granted, these fortunes came from the crayons of grade-school kids, so they were sometimes less than insightful. You'd be lucky to get a "Someone has a crush on you" or "You have cooties" result. Startling accurate though, these were. This self-diagnostic test was the first to pronounce me cootie-ridden, which I was luckily able to treat with another round at the paper fortune teller. Thanks, Cootie Catcher.

Rubber Poppers

These toys were deceptively simple, so it's a wonder that they were able to wreak quite as much havoc as they did on classrooms. Typically purchased for a nickel at a toy store or in a quarter machine at the supermarket, these things did little more than create an irritating disturbance wherever we brought them. You would turn the little convex thick rubber popper inside out, wait patiently with bated breath and dread-filled anticipation, and finally watch it pop itself back into shape. Usually this process involved a high vertical jump, the better of which could sufficiently damage an overhead lamp or skylight. It's pretty clear why teachers didn't want them around, but their appeal to impish children was undeniable.

Laser Pointers

Laser pointers were first manufactured in the 80s, but they became increasingly portable and conveniently keychain-based in the 90s, making them a coveted item for mischievous children. The pointers were intended to highlight text or images in a presentation, but they were quickly adopted for far more deviant purposes. You couldn't go to a PG movie back in those days without spying that familiar achingly annoying red dot on the screen, usually gracing the general region of the star's privates. In class, children found pleasure in shining a little red dot on their classmates, despite warnings that direct eye contact could have stare-at-an-eclipse-type repercussions. It's no wonder so many schools quickly issued bans on the pointers. I imagine many schoolteachers grew frustrated with constantly seeing a red dot centered sniper-like on their crotches.


Aside from note-passing, more organized written games were also pretty popular classroom distractions. Most notably MASH was a popular choice for its uncanny future-telling ability. It stands for Mansion, Apartment, Shack, and House, denoting the preset options for dwelling accommodations. Luckily we had the power to fill in the blanks in the other categories, but it seemed we were always forced into adding some pretty bad choices to the mix. These things were fairly right on if I do say so myself. After all, how else could I have predicted that I'd be living in a Shack in Samoa with a poodle named Jeeves married to the kid who sat in the back of the class picking his nose? That kind of stuff just doesn't foretell itself.

Origami-Style Note Folding

As we moved through the grade ranks, we became more and more interested in secretly passing notes during class instead of listening to our instructor drone on about Tuck Everlasting or multiplication tables. There was far more to enjoy in the process than just marking the "yes" box on a "Do you like me?" note. We cultivated incredibly intricate folding methods that rivaled traditional Origami's complexity and tradition. Soon everyone knew how to fold in tight packages, often featuring a pull-tab for the convenience of the readers. Of course, these things made a great deal of noise when opened, completely forgoing their intended role as a secret note. At the very least, though, they helped us develop the fast fine motor skills we now use to download apps on our iPhones.

Metallic Gum Wrapper Decoupage

Who says not paying attention in class is for dummies? Some of us slackers had a certain ingenuity that you just can't get from book-learnin'. That is, we were able to develop new and exciting uses for mundane, everyday materials while simultaneously feeding our gum-chewing addiction. There was no more satisfyingly monotonous and tedious task than methodically peeling the metallic outer layer from our gum wrappers and carefully sticking it to our notebook-fronts. It was something of an art, really, only with more under-the-fingernail pain. It did, to its credit, produce a fair deal of shiny, shiny notebooks.

Slap Bracelets

Are they jewelry or a toy? Or better yet, a weapon? It's tough to say, but one thing was for sure: slap bracelets were an unquenchable and distracting fashion statement. Many schools banned the metal-rodded coated bracelets, crying out against safety. Yes, a few kids sliced their wrists open, but it's more likely our schools were a tad more concerned with the more mundane everyday irritation of that "thwack!" sound in round-esque repetition throughout the schoolday.

It may not have been quite on par with what our teachers wanted us to learn, but you can't say there was nothing to gain in our classroom tomfoolery. In fact, the retention rate on many of these classroom irritants is far greater than many of our school-sanctioned class subjects. After all, I couldn't reduce a fraction to save my life, but I can still fold notes with the best of 'em. That's just results.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Trapper Keepers

Children of the 90s note: I don't want to hear it from any of you naysayers that Trapper Keepers belong to 80s children. Can't we share? Many of us 80s babies were 90s children, you know, and we loved our Trapper Keepers with every bit the same ardor as you did. Case closed. With velcro, no less. That stuff sticks.

There's nothing like overpriced school supplies to give kids an unneeded boost of self importance. Really, anybody who was anybody had a Trapper Keeper. Well, anybody who was anybody aged five to fifteen who grew up during the 80s and 90s. I highly doubt any high powered lawyers were toting around a Ninja Turtles-themed binder in their briefcases.

School supply shopping is always an ordeal, but Mead stepped in and gave us a few more things worthy of our throwing ourselves tantrum-style on the floor in the middle of OfficeMax. These things were more than worth completely humiliating our parents in a highly public place if only it meant that we would soon be toting a Trapper Keeper full of coordinating folders in our backpack.

Buying designer-esque school supplies was the only reason to get excited for going back to school in the fall. Picking out each shiny folder, the multicolored pens, and best of all our very own brand-spanking new Trapper Keeper complete with Velcro closure sporting our favorite design or character on the front. They may have been five bucks at the store, but the market value amongst children was off the charts.

This is probably the quintessential late 80s/early 90s school supply commercial. The humor is so cheesy they might as well package it with crackers and call it a Handi-Snack

It was the ultimate status symbol for a kid reentering the school year. God help you if you started at a new school and were caught unaware of the fact that Lisa Frank ballerina bunnies or Sonic the Hedgehog were the only designs to have. Those with the lesser abstract-patterned Trapper Keepers were left to wallow in their quiet school supply induced shame, kicking themselves for coveting the paint splattered cover in lieu of the more contemporary character designs.

Trapper Keepers were the ultimate school accessory and supposedly taught us organizational skills from a young age, though mine was always bursting at the seams with untidy clutter. They were generally pretty functional as far as elementary school supplies go, giving our parents less of a reason to veto their purchase on that all-important back to school shopping trip. They typically featured specially fitted folders, a handy pencil case, and a wraparound closure to encase all of our schoolwork in a neat little package. Don't even get me started on the satisfying sound of pulling open the Velcro tab. These babies were nothing short of a kid's dream.

Now in an age where kids are now sporting actual designer school supplies (Louis Vuitton pencil cases, anyone?) it's almost laughable to reminisce about a time when a run-of-the-mill product available for a few bucks at WalMart commanded respect and awe from our classmates. Kids these days (using this phrase is the first sign of adulthood) with their iPhones and Ed Hardy tee shirts are unlikely to appreciate the value of a simple pleasure like a Trapper Keeper. We, on the other hand, knew their worth. You know, as our Trapper Keepers had to keep our papers in order as we trudged to school on foot. In the snow. Uphill both ways.

In any given classroom during the 80s and 90s there were undoubtedly a vast spectrum of designs and styles on display. Trapper Keepers were all for gender stereotyping, offering typical boy- and girl-specific fare. For the girls, we had our dolphins, our kittens, our puppies, and all other types of aww-inspiring images to nicely complement our burgeoning sticker collections. For the boys, we had video game themes, sports team logos, masculine cartoon characters, cars, or extreme sports-type designs. Sure, there were crossover abstract designs that were pretty gender neutral, but dammit if I wasn't going to get a kitty cover like the rest of my female classmates.

These homework holders may seem benign, but mischievous kids were always able to find ways to provoke school administrators into banning these covetable caches. With a bit of destructive disassemblage, we could easy build desktop self-enclosing Trapper Keeper cubicles behind which to write notes, play with contraband Silly Putty, and engage in other banned activities. Other schools considered the binders to be more of a distraction than they were worth and because they created unnecessary class distinctions. All over something you could purchase all Wal-Mart, no less. Those were the good old days.

Nowadays, you can find Trapper Keepers again stocked in store shelves but they're certainly a different model than the ones we so craved. The satisfying sound of pulled Velcro is no more, as the new TKs feature a quieter, more demure magnetic closure. They have customizable covers under which you can slide your own photos or design. Heck, they don't even come with the signature Trapper folders, which have since been replaced with bland dividers. Maybe I'm reading into it a bit too far, but wouldn't that make it just a Keeper? I'm about to cry false advertising.

To make matters worse, a couple of years ago Mead released a model that would play music from your iPod. Really? What has this come to? I was happy just to have a picture of a panda doing some housepainting on the cover. Now these kids are using them as speaker systems? What exactly is this world coming to where a kid can't enjoy a simple school supply simply on the merit of its design alone? These kids can have their crappy new models. I'm digging up my old Lisa Frank prototype. At least then I can remember Trapper Keepers for the way they were.

Check it out:
The Surfing Pizza's Ode to Trapper Keepers

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