The Thrashing Machine & Other Boy Games

No, that’s not a typo. Threshing machines and the thrashing machine are similar but the thrashing machine is man-powered. My brothers and son invented it about ten years ago when my boy was a sweaty-headed, little three year-old bouncy ball.  

 RWS_The Thrashing Machine

A couple of weeks ago we had everybody down for supper and card playing and my kids and their two cousins got the thrashing machine running again.

Since both of my brothers were still single when my husband and I had our firstborn, our son got a lot of their attention for years. Whenever company arrived my son was always excited, up for boy adventure, and  wound up, so it seemed perfectly acceptable I guess that my grown brothers still behaved like boys.  

RWS_Going in...
Whenever my family got together, everybody usually came down to our house and “Sweat Boy,” as we used to call our son, loved it. My brothers and son got into playing boy games so much that my son’s head would be slick and wet like he’d just got out of the tub without towel drying it.

 RWS_Getting thrashed

The favorite game though, has been the thrashing machine. The rougher the three of them played, the better they all liked it. Add my two brothers’ nonstop humor, and the after dinner entertainment was covered. 

RWS_Exiting the Thrashing machine

 Some nights the boy games they played were so comical, I had side stitches so bad I couldn’t breathe and had tears in my eyes. My brothers also loved telling me that my nostrils were “flaring” if I got to laughing too hard (don’t ask).

The creation of the thrashing machine was accidental. My brothers liked to toss our boy around semi-rough but still playfully and Sweat Boy ate it up. One time my brothers decided they had to “thrash” him. He had to try to go through their bicycle-rotating legs, with one guy at each end. An arm was the switch lever to start their legs rotating and to make the sound of a machine running. Once Sweat Boy got on his knees and crawled through the thrashing machine, they’d stall him while they shoved him back and forth and thumped him around with their feet. After his very first thrashing, he wanted to play “the thrashing machine” every time they showed up and it’s become a family tradition ever since to get the thrashing machine going when the family gets together.  

One of my favorite of the boy games was the sandbagging game. My son was the boxer wearing toy boxing gloves and had to box a bean bag that the his uncles would wallop him with to try and knock him down. One uncle would be the coach in the corner warming the boxer up giving him pointers and be in charge of making the bell dinging sound. The other uncle would be the opponent/sandbagger with the bean bag. What made it so funny to watch was that my son would be all serious while my brothers were being comedians.  

One short-lived game was when my son was a bulldogger. One uncle was the horse and the other was the steer. They’d start at one corner of the living room and leave the “box” at my son’s head nod and my son would bulldog the “steer.” Of course they also did a lot of bull riding with Sweat Boy too. 

Another one-time game was when my brothers had my son diving from our dresser onto the bed as they threw a stuffed Santa Claus at him that he’d try to land on. When Santa split—due to too many hard hits—the game ended. 

For years, my son would be all sweaty from playing made up boy games with his two uncles whenever we had family get-togethers. Now he just takes it out on the mats at wrestling practice and matches. 

RWS_Takin' it out on the mat

RWS_Wrestling tourney in Newell, SD

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