Friday, April 27, 2012


Our seven year old grandson, who certainly doesn’t lack opportunities for good fun, came home from his next door neighbors recently very excited about a new game he and his friends had come up with, “roofball.” One player throws a tennis ball on to the roof of their garage while the next one catches it as it comes down, then throws it on the roof again for the next one to catch, and so on.

Every game has to have rules, of course, and this one is no exception. Fail to get the ball on to the roof, or unintentionally throw it over the roof to the other side, or fail to catch the ball after the first bounce, and you lose a turn. I asked him how you win in this game, and he responded with, “It doesn’t really matter who wins, its just fun to play,” as he proceeded to show me how it's done on his own garage roof (with a larger ball, since his tennis ball got caught in the rain gutter on his first try).

I can’t help but see multiple advantages to roofball over some of the more organized sports he also takes part in, as in his local soccer league, where some adult coach tells the team exactly how the game is to be played, drills each one in becoming the most able player possible, sees to it that someone keeps score, and where winning can become as important as the enjoyment and good exercise of the game itself.

So let me raise three cheers for “roofball,” a game where everyone wins, you learn to take turns and play by the rules, and where every player has lots of fun.
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