Yesterday, my oldest nephew came up with an interesting new game which was a first in both our lives. We had been playing catch with the usual tennis ball when suddenly he hit upon the idea, his experiment. His younger brother had just had a ball bought for him which lit up when it received pressure on it. The young boy had decided to use this glowing ball of light in a game of catch in the dark.
So, we switched off the lights and began playing. It was a memorable experience. The glowing ball of light in the dark flickered with neon intensity and made the room glow in an eerie fashion. Occasionally, the lights in the ball would go out, plunging us into the blindness of the dark. Each time this happened, the ball would escape from our clutches, since you cannot catch what you cannot see and then we would have to spend some time searching for it in the dark. The fact that we could only see the vaguest outlines of the other catcher or thrower had a subtle effect on the dynamics of the game. It was less intimate, alien. I was used to seeing the expressions on the boy’s face as we threw and caught the ball.
As we were playing, the younger brother came and we started on a game of ‘Piggy in the Middle’. He was filled with furious energy and screamed and yelped as he tried to grasp the glowing ball of light.
My young nephew’s ‘experiment’ was successful and it was a lot of fun. I wondered afterwards how many people had played catch in the dark like we had.