the noodle moodle

Photo by Family Circle Australia Aug 14, 2012

Photo by Family Circle Australia Aug 14, 2012

     IT’S true that in life there are those more inclined to use their noodles than others.

For example Ben, 11, uses his whenever possible to wallop his brother.

I love it because you can fight with them and you don’t get in trouble because it doesn’t hurt a bit,” he says.

There is something simultaneously both completely ridiculous and utterly zen about the pool noodle.

To start with, the notion that – without them sniffing it – a tube of non absorbent extruded polyethylene could keep kids transfixed for hours is pretty amazing.

Then there’s the fact that one noodle, 1.8m long and 70mm in width that weighs almost nothing itself, can support a 90 kg person.

And, the noodle is so versatile.

You can sit astride it or ride side-saddle; place it behind you neck and float backwards, tuck it under your arms and paddle forwards or latch several together as a raft, and that is just if you are unimaginative.

But for all its many applications, for all the elegant simplicity of its design, its ubiquitous appearance at merest sight of a puddle – no one has recorded the history of the noodle.

Unlike the hula hoop, yo-yo or pet rock it apparently has no place in great pop culture collections of the world.

No one even seems to know who invented it.

My own research efforts drew a blank before 1995 when a company called Nomanco began making a product called Funnoodle in Zebulon, North Carolina.

But, I’m clinging on for dear life. The hunt for the originator of all this fun may have me treading some murky waters, but I’ll keep noodling for facts.

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