7 Dark AF Ways Your Ancestors Had Fun

At some point in “peoples lives”, we’ve all been so that we found ourselves doing something unbelievably stupid simply to pass the time. But fortunately, these days, we have almost unlimited access to books and music and movies and ludicrous sums of porn, so it’s rare. Back in the working day, our ancestors had a lot fewer things around to entertain them. Maybe that’s why they came up with all this crazy material …


The Navy Junior Boxing Program Had Kids As Young As Two Beating Each Other Up

When it comes to sports, we’ve managed to come up with some complicated ways to entertain ourselves over the years. There is the frenetic tempo of basketball, the relaxation of a baseball game, and whatever the hell cricket is. But perhaps nothing is as simple and as enjoyable as watching two people beat the snot out of each other. Boxing has probably existed in one kind or the other since we came down out of the trees, but at the least we had the good sense to make it the standard rules that it should be two adults of similar sizings going at it. Except for a period of time during and after World War II, that is, when mothers decided it would be hilarious to watch their children battle it out.

Library of Congress In the Navy! Yes, you can sail the seven seas. In the Navy! Our boxing league’s for under-threes !

Probably desperate for anything that would take their intellects off the horrors they had seen in combat, the Navy set up a junior boxing program for the progeny of their enlisted boys. Sure, some of these kids were 14, which seems like an OK age to start learning the sweet science, but a very young were two. Two years old . Honestly, at that point, why have an age limit at all? Infants flail their limbs around; why not stay their little hands in boxing gloves right after they are birthed into the world?

US Navy They can’t violate their skulls if their skulls aren’t solid yet!

Lest you think that these toddlers were well up for punching their friends in the face, one child( now an old boy) who participated says that he recollects half the sons saying they didn’t want to fight, simply to be told by their war-weary fathers to “shut up and be a man.” See, that is the problem with this generation of two-year-olds: They aren’t expected to be manly enough. While organizations like the American Academy of Pediatrics want to coddle our special snowflakes and say that they “vigorously oppose” boxing as a athletic for children because of the risk of “chronic” or “fatal” injuries, it wasn’t that bad. A press photo from the time assures us that there was “little in the way of bloodshed.”


Balloon Jumping

In 1923, Popular Science asked its readers 😛 TAGEND

How would you like to own your own hand-power jitney balloon, to expend your Saturday afternoons joyriding in the sky, up a thousand feet or so, swaying beneath the round belly of a small gas-filled purse and traveling anywhere you can induce the playful breezes to take you ?

That … voices horrible. Right? We’re not the only ones who appreciate a giant flashing neon sign telling us to run away? A thousand feet up? “Small gas-filled bag”? “Playful, ” aka suicidally strong, breezes? We’re sorry, people of 1923, were the newly devised vehicle and airliner already get boring? Look, we don’t wishes to accuse old-timey people of being stupid since they are old-timey, but seriously? Nutcases.

British Pathe But well-dressed nutcases, dammit.

Amazingly, some people truly believed this was a transportation breakthrough, and that soon we would all be swimming around under own private gas-bags. But you won’t be surprised to know that it was ridiculously dangerous, even for people who knew what they were doing. One early fanatic was a Royal Air Force parachutist named Dobbs. You would think a humankind who qualified other people how to safely bail out of planes “wouldve been” perfect person to get others interested in this new shape of amusement. And he did try, for a few years at least, putting on shows ” members of the public, hoping they would all run out and buy their own balloons and he wouldn’t be so alone up there. But it kind of sets people off when you manage to die right in the middle of showing off how awesome and safe your new doll is, which is exactly what Dobbs did.

In 1927, he was doing his thing at the Stag Lane Aerodrome in North London when someone noticed he was jumping closer and closer to a high-tension cable. Despite hearing the warns that the wire was live, Dobbs wailed back that he would risk it and proceeded to try to hop over the cable . He is recorded as “nearly” clearing it, but “nearly” simply counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. His feet got tangled in the wire, and when he reached down to try to free himself, he grabbed it and was electrocuted, throwing him down to the ground( so hey, it got him untangled !) and killing him on the spot.

And that, boys and girls, is why Mom and Dad don’t hop-skip/ swim to work to this day.


Blind People Beat The Crap Out Of Each Other( And Pigs) For The Amusement Of The Upper Classes

Until very, very recently in history, it wasn’t a good idea to be born with any kind of disability. Able-bodied humans, probably trying to get their brains off the fact that at any minute they could die from childbirth or plague or explosive diarrhea, liked a little bit of entirely non-politically correct blood athletic to pass the time. That’s how they came up with a medieval favorite that the French called Le jeu de la truie et des quatre aveugles , or “the game of the sow and the four blind men.”

The game was simple, if absolutely awful: Get yourself a swine and a few blind guys( if you were low on actual sightless people, you are able ever get some consider ones and blindfold them ), and throw them in a ring or other cordoned-off space. Then arm “the mens” to the teeth with huge wooden bats and “re just telling me” to start swaying. Whoever kills the poorest of the poor piggy gets to keep it as a trophy. Harmless fun, right? Well , not for the pig, but no matter how they get slaughtered back then, it was probably still horrible, so whatever. But the problem was that this play wasn’t genuinely about killing the swine. The true entertainment received from watching a bunch of blind people inadvertently smash each other with the bats until they were half-dead.

People must have gotten a kick out of it, because the game had staying power. It was played after the Spanish won the Battle of Navas de Tolosa over the Moors in 1212. It was part of the celebrations during a bridal between a prince and princess in Navarre. It was played in 1386 in Germany with a full dozen guys beating the animal and one another. But they had to eventually make those men a little help; they reach each other so many times that many of them aimed up collapsing, so they set a buzzer on the animal and attained them keep going. And an anonymous chronicler records it being played at a festival in Paris in 1425. That hour, they even had a little parade for the four blind guys before the event, which was probably a nice remembrance to try to hold onto every time they get bashed in the head.


Fox Tossing

These days, if you want to get in an debate about the care of foxes, you have to bring up fox hunting, which involves riding in all the regions of the beautiful countryside before your pack of puppies rips one to sheds in front of you. But oh, has humanity managed to be so much more creative with fox torture in the past.

Creative with the technique, anyway, if not the epithet. Because when you hear “fox flinging, ” you probably get a good suggestion what this is going to necessitate. Basically, you have an arena of some sort so that the fox can’t escape. Then you line up in pairs, as if you are going to swing a leap rope between you, but instead it’s a cloth that you will use for the tossing. The foxes are let out of their cages and run around terrified out of their little brains. When they step on your cloth, you and your spouse pull it tight, trying to fling the fox as high in the air as is practicable. The higher the better, since part of the “fun” was to watch the acrobatics it did in midair in order to try to land on its paws. But it would be wasteful for a fox to ground and bash its brain open on a solid floor, hence ruining your opportunity of get in more flings, so the ground was often contained within sawdust. Still, it didn’t prevent all injuries, especially since the animals were often tossed as high as 24 feet , and after the fun was over, the players would finish off any injured ones with a good clubbing.

via Wiki Commons They couldn’t spare a single winging fox.

If you got endured with foxes, people also use rabbits, badgers, and “wildcats.” These events were often a veritable massacre, with hundreds of animals dead by the end. Still, sometimes the poorest of the poor animals got their own back. Foxes and “wildcats” have claws, after all, and it was accepted that to play this game meant risking get bitten or slashed. But the occupational hazards didn’t stop its popularity, and even Holy Roman Emperor Leopold I would play at least once a year.


Goose Pulling

A lot of these other animal torturing plays had died out by the time we hit the modern epoch. But not goose pulling. Goose pulling was so much fun that people had to keep playing it well into the 1800 s. And lest you think it was only those mean Europeans doing all this stuff, this one managed to hop-skip the pond and became popular in America as well.

Goose pulling, like fox tossing, is exactly what it is just like( OK no , not that , sicko ). First you get a rope or bar and place it across a road. Take a LIVE goose( or if you want to mix it up, a rabbit) and shave its neck. Then you embrace its shaven neck and head in grease. Take your greased-up goose and hang it from the rope or bar by its feet, so its poor little body is flapping in the breeze in sheer fear. Then, anyone who wants to play get on their pony, and they take turns charging down the road and trying to rends the head off the live goose . These are your ancestors. These sick fucks.

Frederic Remington “More fun than choking my chicken! “

Anyone who missed the goose solely would get doused in cold water, which doesn’t actually seem fair, holding what the fowl “ve been through”. It must have been a fairly hard play, since it often lasted for hours before someone finally killed the thing. The win would get the goose, or sometimes a small cash prize, or only beverages at the saloon subsequentlies. You threw the poor, panicked bird through that for not a lot of reward. Oh, and this event traditionally took place on Shrove Tuesday, also known as the day before Lent starts, also known as the traditional period people get all the fun material out of their systems. So “thats what” people in the past genuinely want to get do before their 40 periods of religious sobriety: rip a bird’s brain clean off with their bare hands.

Oh wait, did we say up there this succumbed out in the 1800 s? Yeah, about that. If you happen to be in parts of Germany, Belgium, or the Netherlands on Shrove tuesday, to this day you might ensure people yanking the heads off geese in this manner. Thankfully, somewhere along the line, animal rights activists must have gotten involved, because at the least now the goose is dead before they string it up.

CA_Rotwang/ Wiki Commons “In New Orleans, they’re flashing boobs, but this is how we get by in Hamburg.”


The Bizarre Wax Bullet Duels That Terminated In Parties

These periods if someone insults you, you write a passive-aggressive Facebook post about them. But back in the day, people were constantly waiting for the chance to take offense at something person told us they could duel. Despite putting their lives on the line, men and even sometimes girls could not wait to grab a pair handgun or swords and have at it. But after a while, governments stepped in and induced dueling illegal, and people seemed to come to their senses and chose they didn’t want to die because someone induced fun of their hat. Did that mean they stopped dueling? Of course not. They simply procured a lane to make it a bit safer.

In the early 1900 s, people started dueling with wax bullets. That lane, you could still have the fun of pointing a handgun at person and aiming for their heart, but didn’t “re going to have to” spend the rest of their own lives in jail if you hit your target. The duels created such “general merriment” that they were even held during Carnegie Hall. Then in 1908, they added a wax bullet dueling demonstration to the Olympics, as well as various hitting championships around the world.

Library of Congress Because paintball is too fluid and painless.

Of course, just because the projectile you are getting shooting with isn’t a real bullet doesn’t mean you can’t get hurt. There were narratives of both competitors and spectators losing eyes if a shot went wrong. Bits of body parts could also be removed, and one man who was interviewed about his experience dueling told how he inadvertently shot off the fleshy bit between his opponent’s thumb and pointer thumb. He also warned that the fake bullets seemed virtually identical to real bullets, and that people had been killed when they mixed them up. Still, he said dueling was a “necessary evil, ” and that the ability to shoot at person if they were rude stimulated people polite. If that’s true-life, considering the country of the world, maybe we should think about bringing it back.


The Toy Guillotine Fad

You recollect “when youre” a kid how you’d take your dolls and set them in your doll electric chair and pretend to kill them? No? Oh right, that’s because we’re not insane, unlike French children during the Revolution, who went absolutely crazy for toy guillotines.

It was altogether common for kids to attend the many, many beheadings that were taking place during the terror, and when they got home, they craved their own version to play with. Two-foot-tall operating models became all the rage, with children using them to chop the heads off dolls or even small animals. And the same style people today was concern that violent video games are ruining our youths, eventually these tiny guillotines were banned out of dread the latter are a bad influence on children.

via 50watts. com “We don’t want every child to turn into Sid.”

That didn’t stop their parents having fun with the fad, though. They had smaller modelings built that they would employ during dinner to chop up bread and veggies. Sometimes they would have small figures of politicians or other celebrities made and filled with a red incense that would spurt everywhere when they were beheaded. Dames would then dip their handkerchiefs in the incense so they left the dinner smelling nice. The apparently bloodstained handkerchiefs would go well with their other accessory, guillotine earrings.

After all the killings stopped and the aristocracy came back into power, they wanted to show how proud they were of their relatives who had died. So both women and men started wearing their whisker short in the back, as if it had been sliced off by the guillotine. Women wore red scarves to represent the blood and those worn by two famous women who had been executed. And at a ball comprised each year for people who could demonstrate they were related to a victim of the guillotine, dancers would bow to each other in a jerking motion, as if their brain had been lopped off. That would be like if everybody went to prom and the cool thing to do was lay on the ground and feign you were get a lethal injection.

Kathy wrote a very funny book called FUNERALS TO DIE FOR, and you can buy it here. Or follow her on Facebook, Tumblr, Instagram, or Twitter .

PS It’s not like you can’t still get a little guillotine for your desk .

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