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The ‘Bambaram’ (also ‘Pambaram’) or the Spinning Top has been a part of the Indian culture.
Spinning a top was a game of skill. Youngsters would have their own top or Bambaram. Come holidays, the Top would come out of hiding and the heat of the day would be consumed by sweat due to this fabulous pastime. The top and its rope are like the nail and the finger. The tiny nail at the bottom of the top would help it to spin around.
Those were the times when solid wooden spinning tops were wrapped by a thin rope before being flung on a surface. It was especially important to choose a top with the best of center of gravity. Boys used to experiment with the top before purchasing them. Once spun around, the Bambaram would be transferred from one location to the other and this would keep happening until the Kinetic push is exhausted.
The village quadrangle was the place, and every other child would be waiting to compete. Bambaram-s were made by the local people and these craftsmen-carpenters were in much demand during the vacation. Back those times, when the Pambaram was a matter of pride and the boy with one would be blessed with hangers-on. The most skilled guy would be much sort after. A spinning top on the palm was the most happening thing and it would require amazing dexterity to handle it. The top would kind of tickle the palm while spinning fast and talented kids would transfer the top from the palm to the arm.
Long ago, the top occupied the center stage amongst games and all the ingredients required for making the same, the rope, the nail, the top (wooden part), and the colors, were naturally available materials. These Pambaram-s built skills and friendships that would last a lifetime. The simple top added joy and contentment at a time when the society knew the value of things and people. It is high time that we go back to those good old days and good old games.
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