SkyMall Monday: Underwater Pogo Stick

Spring is in the air and thoughts of warm weather, outdoor activities and water sports (not that kind of water sports, sicko) are starting to dance through our heads here at SkyMall Monday headquarters. Nothing beats frolicking in the ocean, lounging in a jacuzzi or enjoying fun and games in a pool. I’ve always been a fan of playing volleyball, basketball and freeze tag in the pool. Taking games played outside of the pool and dipping them in the water just makes everything more fun (See Floating Blackjack). If I could, I’d play UNO, Twister and Spin the Bottle in the pool. But some games just weren’t made to be played underwater. Knowing the difference between dry games and moist games is the key to avoiding painful friction between you and your partner. Games involving bouncing and bumping require moisture. And that’s why one classic game is screaming for us to just add water. Leave it to SkyMall to know when the time is right to get wet and wild by giving us the Underwater Pogo Stick.The problem with pogo sticking has always been the potential castration fear of falling. I’m all for hipping and hopping, but I’m less thrilled by the prospect of tripping and flopping. By bringing the pogo stick into the pool, the threat of broken bones and concussions has been replaced by the chance of drowning. And drowning is a much cooler way to die. If you’re going to die on a pogo stick, you best do so in a way that gets you featured on the front page of the newspaper and not on page F26. No one cares about F26.

I know what you’re thinking. “But, Mike, a pogo stick in the pool? That’s preposterous! Why not a Pogo Ball or a Sit ‘n Spin?” Well, first of all, Pogo Balls are too small for our adult asses. I’m not sure if you’ve looked in the mirror lately, but you’re not a kid anymore. Second of all, Sit ‘n Spin has always been an inappropriate name for a toy. Why not just name it Flippin’ Ya Off? But, since you insist on having the idea of pogo sticking in the water explained, I’ll indulge you. Let’s read the product description together, shall we?

This is the only pogo stick designed for use in swimming pools that allows you to perform a variety of waterborne stunts as you bounce off walls or bottoms. A rigid ball filled with water fits into the non-slip footrest, providing responsive push-off when compressed against a pool’s floor with your body weight, and enables you to splash effortlessly in shallower water and bound powerfully through deeper water.

Before anything can get wet, you must always start with a rigid ball (or two). When things get deeper, you need to be able to bound powerfully.

Everything is better when it’s wetter, so it’s about time we started moistening up our lives. Get bouncing, get jumping and, most importantly, get lubricated. Get the Underwater Pogo Stick.

Check out all of the previous SkyMall Monday posts

Have a road trip scavenger hunt – Road trip tip

Planning a family road trip? To avoid hours of boredom, plan a “scenic scavenger hunt.”

It’s easy. Just write down a list of 100 things you might see along the way, like landmarks, buses or bridges. The first person to complete the list wins.

For preschool kids, substitute magazine photos and trim the list to twenty familiar objects. For older kids, include a challenge: require them to provide one additional fact about each item they find.

Have fun. And by the time you reach the end of the road, you won’t be at the end of your rope.

The Summer Redneck Games: A Hootin’ Good Time!

Starting today, Gadling is taking a look at our favorite festivals around the world. From music festivals to cultural showcases to the just plain bizarre, we hope to inspire you to do some festival exploring of your own. Come back each week for our picks or find them all HERE.

Each July, nearly 100,000 visitors descend on East Dublin, Georgia to participate in a one-of-a-kind event known as the Summer Redneck Games. This unique festival is a celebration of “all things Redneck” including special feats of athleticism, a variety of culinary treats and plenty of fun.

The story of the Redneck Games begins in 1996 before the Atlanta Olympics. After outsiders began making fun of “Rednecks” who were hosting the games, a group of volunteers decided to do something about it. Enterprising locals took critics’ remarks as a challenge, organizing their very own “Redneck Games” and agreed to donate the proceeds from the event to charity. In its inaugural year, more than 5,000 visitors showed up. The organizers knew they were on to something. Over the last decade, the Redneck Games have continued to grow, with participation reaching 95,000 rednecks during the annual one-day July extravaganza.

Much like the Olympic games, the Redneck Games hosts a number of challenging athletic events, but with a uniquely Redneck twist. Favorite contests include the Hubcap Hurl, the Bobbin’ for Pigs Feet Fest, Mud Wrestling, and a special contest called Redneck Horseshoes, which uses toilet seats in place of the standard iron game pieces. There’s also plenty of authentic Redneck foods for hungry spectators, including Corn Dogs, Alligator Kebabs and Elephant Ears. You’re also sure hear authentic Redneck slang like “y’all,” “fixin’ to,” “do what?,” and the all-time favorite (as coined by Redneck favorite, Larry the Cable Guy), “Git R’ Done!”

Though the Redneck Games would seem to be a decidedly local affair, it has slowly attracted fans from across the U.S. and around the world. As the event has become more popular, a steady stream of participants from “above the Mason-Dixon line” has joined in the fun, with events taking place as far away as Canada and a range of international media coverage.

There’s many misconceptions about the Games – critics decry the Redneck Games as nothing more than horseplay and drinking beer. But much like the comments the led to the event’s creation, event organizers and supporters have taken the remarks in stride. To its fans, the Redneck Games remain nothing but a silly, great time. Despite the increase in attendance and popularity, it remains much the same pure fun that it has always been.

Want to join in the craziness? Head down to Georgia this July 10th to check it out. Everyone is welcome – even Yankees…

Gadlinks for Tuesday, 1.26.2010

Happy Tuesday, Gadling fans! Here are a few more travel tidbits to help you through the week.

More Gadlinks HERE.

UNO is the best travel game ever

Traveling is a thrilling, exciting, non-stop tour de force that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Except for when you’re waiting at the airport, stuck on a train, killing time in a hotel room until a monsoon stops or waiting for the bathroom at your hostel to have five fewer white kids with dreadlocks hogging the toilets.

It’s times like those that you need the perfect time filler. It needs to be a) fun, b) inclusive, c) easy to pack and d) easy to explain to newcomers. One game possesses all of these qualities. One game can turn a boring flight delay into an epic showdown. One game is the perfect storm of form, function, egalitarianism and pretty colors. Ladies and gentleman, UNO is the best travel game ever.

Let’s take a look at why that’s just a plain and simple fact.Inclusive – UNO can be played with two to ten players. TEN! You could have half of your hostel throwing down brightly colored cards, laughing hysterically and teaching each other how to say “Draw Four” in any number of languages.

No Language Barriers – Speaking of languages, can your friends count? Are they not color blind? Congratulations, you have the perfect UNO partners.

Easy to Pack – Ever brought a deck of cards with you on a trip? Then you also know how to pack UNO! If you can’t fit UNO into your suitcase, you’ve packed too many condoms.

Perfect Timing – A game of UNO never goes on for hours. If you bust out the Travel Scrabble, you can kiss that whole afternoon goodbye. And good luck playing that with your local friends in Russia, China or anywhere else where English is scarce. UNO is perfect for airports, planes, waiting for your friends to get ready for a night on the town and any other downtime you may encounter on a trip.

Sweet Revenge – Did your friend steal the window seat on the plane? Did she “forget her wallet” when you went out for drinks? UNO is all about screwing people over. Rather than fighting over how much someone owes you for the hotel room, why not just throw down a series of Reverse and Draw Four cards until they beg for mercy?

I’ve played UNO in Iceland. I’ve played UNO in Spain. I’ve yelled at a friend for not bringing UNO to Rome. I’ve been shooed onto a flight by impatient airline employees while trying to complete the final hand of a one-on-one UNO match on a trip to Sweden. I’ve played UNO as a child and I’ve played UNO as an adult. UNO is the same everywhere you go. And UNO is fun every single time.

So, rather than trying to pack Mouse Trap or The Game of Life, do yourself (and your friends) a favor and bring UNO with you on your next trip. Your trip, like the cards, will be wild.

Agree that UNO is the best travel game ever? Share your UNO stories in the comments. Disagree? Well, I guess you can try to make a case for Yahtzee if you really want to embarrass yourself.

Photo by Flickr user Natecull.