A yoyo (also spelled yo-yo) is a toy consisting of two discs and a connecting axle around which a length of string is wound. The player holds on to the end of the string and throws the yoyo downwards. When it hits the end of the string, the yoyo winds back up to the top and can be grabbed by the player or left to roll down again. Repeating this action is called yoyoing (or yo-yoing).

The aforementioned is my understanding and please note that I am not an engineer. I am also not anywhere near proficient in the technique of playing with the yoyo. Mine just rolls down the string … and dies. Right there on the floor tiles at my feet. I pick it up, carefully rewind the string and throw the yoyo as instructed by my children and … it dies at my feet.

Did you know that people have been playing yoyo since 500 BC. In the collage above there is an image of a ceramic pot dating back to that period, showing a boy playing with a yoyo. You would think that now, in the Year of our Lord 2016, every person on this planet should have mastered playing with this simple toy. Not me.

I know for a fact that children younger than my dog can perform tricks with their yoyos. Hell, I’m sure if a gave my stupid dog a yoyo he would know how to play with it. Not me, though. There are thousands of contests all over the world, where players show off their yoyo techniques by performing tricks like “Walking the Dog” or “Rocking the Baby”. I have difficulty walking the dog and rocking the baby without a yoyo in my hand.

Dis nogal eienaardig, want in die laerskool was ek een van die beste tol-draaiers. My pa het vir my ‘n houttol gemaak op sy draaibank wat ek kon gooi dat hy gons soos wat hy spin. Ek kon die draaiende tol opraap met my toutjie en hom verder laat gons in die palm van my hand en net om windgat te wees, kon ek hom al draaiende gooi van een handpalm na die ander.

Ek het albaster gespeel dat dit bars en is altyd gekies om te skiet vir die wenspan, ek kon ‘n tuisgemaakte woer-woer laat klink soos ‘n elektriese bandsaag, ek kon ‘n sokkerbal sekuur deur die hek se opening skop (dit was ons doelpale) en ek kon ‘n tennisbal teen enige hoek of uit enige hoogte vang met een hand, links of regs, maak nie saak nie.

So wat is dit met die yoyo? Ekskuus, klimtol. Hè?