Arman's stuff
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Army Men

(Tue Jul 14 15:32:29 2009)

When I was a kid, I had a big bucket of plastic army men...

When I was a kid, I had a big bucket of plastic army men, as well as a fishing tackle box stuffed full. I would take the box with me when I went to the park, and build a huge castle in the sand. My brother and I would set up battles that would range far and wide across the playground.

In the "heyday" of my collection, I had a 3 foot long aircraft carrier (black and grey), three two-foot airplanes (one green, one tan with a crushed front, and one black with machine guns off one side and underneath), a green tank that fit the army men's scale, a plastic rock wall, a helicopter, and several "a bit small" scale vehicles: a green tank, a green troop carrier, a tan tank, a green jeep, a tan jeep, a green cannon (that the jeep pulled), a few grey, blue, or white planes, and a pile of fences, sandbags, and barbed wire. I had a very large green army, and equally as large tan army, a small blue army, a small bright green army, and exactly six olive army men, who I called commandos. At one point, I was given an old army man, made out of lead.

I've always looked at other designs as cheap knockoffs; they seemed flimsier, as if less effort was put into them. When I got my lead army man (he's a laying-down sniper), I was convinced that my style was the best; obviously, it had been around since army men were made out of lead (1960s, I believe), and it had survived until today. The "Army Men" games were, as far as I can tell, based off this variety of army men, too. Since old army men and new games were based off that design, I just assumed everyone else was trying to copy them.

I lost quite a few army men, over the years, but some still remain. After I left for college and wasn't there to protect my toys, my siblings lost or destroyed a good portion of my collection. My ship is long gone, the big planes all crushed and discarded, and the few army men I have left have been mixed in with other brands and varieties.

Anyway, I've been wanting to buy a few bags of army men lately, under the guise that my son needs some toys like I used to have, but I've not been able to find what I want. I've found the occasional "cheap knockoff" style, but nothing I want. After a little research, I found this site that at least has pictures of the soldiers I played with as a child (I had every variety, including the officer and what they call the "marching rifleman" - he was just standing, as far as I could tell). If you look through the other sets on the site, you'll see that the soldiers are thinner and have a less realistic look than the Tee Mee soldiers. Not to mention most sets don't come with green and tan...

If you can find somewhere I can buy some of that kind of soldiers (for cheap - none of this "10 soldiers for $10" business!), I would be absolutely overjoyed. It used to be $5 for a bag of 50 or so soldiers, plus a tank or jeep-and-cannon and a sheet of plastic with a map printed on it... at that price, I could once again build my armies... Bwaaahahahaha!! I WILL RULE THE WORLD!

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This blag is tagged: Armymen, Childhood, Toys, All