Games People Play Richard Boissevain, 36, Yo-Yo Entrepreneur

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The Independent Culture
THE BEST games are the ones you make up yourself. At school we were all in gangs, and during break we built camps out of branches and plastic sheeting which we found in the wood behind the school. We set up boundaries and posted sentries, then we'd wage war against all intruders.

I used to get really carried away by it all; I shouted louder than anyone else, and always led the charge from the front. That was when I was quite young, and went to a very friendly, pleasant school. Then I was taken away, because I wasn't doing so well in other areas, and was sent to a more academic school.

It was a difficult time, but I suppose you go through these life-changes when you move from one school to another. The games changed from ones that we invented ourselves to being much more formalised - for instance, having to turn up in the right kit and play hockey.

Then I started playing rugby, which was fantastic. I loved all that business of getting stuck in on Saturday afternoons, although in many ways I preferred the mad times, when the games were much more spontaneous.

I lived on a farm for a while, and we'd go out at night and play a hi- tech version of Hare and Hounds with flashlights, but now I make up games with my children.

"Fire in the Hole" is a good one. You need a sandy beach, some adults and loads of kids. Dig a large hole about 4ft deep, then mark out a 100- ft circle around it. Everyone jumps in the hole, and you count to three and shout "FIRE IN THE HOLE!!!". The kids run out and you chase them. The hole becomes home and the circle is the boundary.

Richard Boissevain runs Tricknology Yo-Yo courses nationwide for children and adults. Hotline: 01225 466999

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