As the holidays get ready to roll over us, I find myself scrambling to locate fun gifts for both my niece and nephew. Unlike years past however, I have opted to stay clear of the typical plug-n-play gifts as I feel that this year calls for something a little more low-tech and dare I say – more traditional?

During my quest for the perfect gift, I found myself thinking back to my own childhood and looking at toys that I once enjoyed growing up. While some of them may not be manufactured any longer, I was pleasantly surprised by the ones that still managed to keep their heads above water in this video game based universe.

One of the toys I was shocked to see still very much in existence was Lincoln Logs. Yes, just like their Lego and Tinkertoy counterparts, it seems that these building blocks from my childhood (and perhaps even yours) are still alive and kicking. Man, I used to build with these things for hours on end. Granted, I eventually moved onto other toys as I grew older. Yet somehow they still remain a great memory for me now as I look back as an adult.

Now, since I was a child in the late 1970’s, there were some TV shows growing up that held a lot of value to me personally. Some of them were important enough that I managed to drop just the right number of hints to all but guarantee that I might receive the corresponding action figures to those old programs. Two of them that come to mind are Battlestar Galactica and of course, the Six Million Dollar Man (today he would be the “Water-cooled AMD 64 Man”).

I spent more time playing with the action figure of famed Lee Majors than with his sci-fi counterparts. When it came time for the actual programs themselves however, there could be no doubt which one really inspired me.

The television program known as Battlestar Galactica thrilled me on so many levels that it was enough to boggle the mind. Even as an adult, the program still holds a certain sustainable level of intrigue as it begs the question; “What if?”

Toys were not something that seemed to be in short supply growing up. Although in those days, we did not have to ‘plug it in’ to allow our imaginations take hold.

I think this is best illustrated by those of us that remember the Mighty Men and Monster Maker! Yes, while our childhood programing may of maintained a certain level of cheesiness, at least our other toys could provide us with hours of ‘mighty monster fun’ as we’d create the strangest and most bizarre things that our twisted little minds could come up with!

Now, a couple of people out there might be wondering if I was raised in a closet. After all, there was one man that was anything but fiction. Who the heck am I talking about? Why, none other than the man himself – Evel “Freaking” Knievel.

Reckless, irresponsible and perhaps even a poor influence on little kids who would try to imitate his crazy stunts on their big-wheels. To young kids like myself growing up, the man was a half-cocked legend to be admired.

Now for those of you too young to remember him, you might have heard of his son, Robbie. Most certainly a chip off of the old block with regards to his stunts.

So, what toys were big when you were growing up? Heck, for that matter. Were toys even a part of your childhood? I’d love to hear about it. Hit me up with an email and tell me all about it. Who knows, we may have shared some common interests way back when?

[tags]lincoln logs,knievel,mighty men,monster maker,bionic man[/tags]