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Stubs: Limbs Are Overrated

Updated: Jan 7


My childhood home was one of thirteen houses that lined our isolated street. Our small street was part of an even smaller town that was surrounded by farms and a large steel factory. Growing up, we were told land mines existed in the muddy farmland, which only led to careless exploring. There were other times when we trespassed at the factory and climbed on top of old tractor trailers because we thought it was cool. Les we not forget all the fires we started. Ah yes, a time before WiFi. Then there were games we invented.


When our parents forced us outside, we ran through a gauntlet of games we frequented. Each game had a shelf life. Tag, manhunt, lighting toys on fire, stealing our parents cigarettes, making each other eat things we find, Mario Kart, Crash Bandicoot, and Goldeneye eventually grew old. This led us to creating a game of our own, one that we affectionately called Stubs.


It’s quite simple, don’t get hit by the ball. One person has the ball and tries to peg everyone else. This person is known as The Stub-Master. Everyone else avoids getting hit, however when you do, you must pay the price. The price was that the limb has been figuratively blown off your body. It had become a stub. If your leg gets hit, stub. If your arm, stub. But if your chest or head get hit, you die. First person to be dead becomes the next Stub-Master.


Don’t get me wrong, we had our share of screen time a la N64, PS1, Sega, and Gameboy Color. We played computer games, board games, and even dabbled with a Ouiji board. Every yard has some version of a fort or base that we constructed and used during weekly games of manhunt. We were active kids who pushed the envelope.


Perhaps a game where limbs are blown off the body is morbid. Although it was hailed by my parents in the 90's as inventive and creative. As I grew older I learned that people with actual missing limbs don’t like their stub being called a stub.


They also don’t like to be called The Stub-Master.



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