Older book a la "A Dangerous Book for Boys"?
May 4, 2007 7:10 AM   Subscribe

Help me find the name and a copy of a book similar in concept to the newer A Dangerous Book for Boys.

My paternal grandparents used to have a book that they said was my fathers, though it may have been my uncle's (who was 12 years younger than my dad and thus born in '65). It was similar to the new book "A Dangerous Book For Boys," in that many things that a preteen/young teen boy would find fascinating, in terms of escapades. I remember it describing in detail how to build an underground fort with a trapdoor in the ceiling, how to have an awesome crab-apple fight, how to make an icy luge you could shoot riding on metal platters, how to make invisible ink out of milk, how to make an ice rink in your backyard, etc. I think many of these things were couched within a loose storyline of a group of youngins. There may have been jokes and puzzles in it as well. I think it may have been non-traditional sized hardcore or stiff paperback, more like a textbook sized thing, and either predominantly white or yellow in color. The inside had lots of diagrams drawn cartoonishly in black and white. I think the title was something along the lines of "everything your parents don't want you to know" or something like that. Does anyone remember this book? If it belonged to my father, it was probably new in the mid sixties; if it belonged to his younger brother, it was probably new in the mid 70s. My dad vaguely recalls ME being fascinated with this book after finding it in my grandparents house but has no recollection of it being his or his brother's.
posted by Soulbee to Writing & Language (8 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
I do not know it but one that you might find a close second to the above is the American Boys Handy Book:

posted by Wong Fei-hung at 7:22 AM on May 4, 2007

Does it have to be the specific book you're looking for? If not, I might be able to offer a suggestion for a book or two that are similar but are definitely not that book.
posted by drezdn at 8:29 AM on May 4, 2007

Response by poster: I'm open to suggestions, but I am really interested in this particular book. I used to pour/pore/poor (haha which one? or what else?) over it when I was younger and lived a detailed fantasy life for quite some time based upon its contents. i cannot BELIEVE that i can't remember the title and have no idea what happened to it!
posted by Soulbee at 10:29 AM on May 4, 2007

I read a similiar book when I was younger (born in '65 as well) that I have been eager to find again.

I thought it was called 'hodge podge' and was full of things learned by interviewing hundreds of kids.
Jokes, games, and what I remember most, strange superstitions.

The ones that stood out were kid's superstitions involving cemetaries.
In one part of the country I learned kids would hold their breath when passing a cemetary, while in another, kids would say 'bunny bunny bunny bunny' and then when having passed it, say 'rabbit'. I realise how wierd that sounds, and that's why I remember that book.

Sorry to threadjack, but I would love to find that book!
posted by exparrot at 11:08 AM on May 4, 2007

Response by poster: been wracking my brains all day trying to remember things about this book. I think it was written by 2 authors, and may have been something local-ish or at least local authors to New Hampshire. My family has a heavy tradition of teaching at/attending Phillips Exeter Academy...so maybe someone who taught there or went there wrote the book...
posted by Soulbee at 11:20 AM on May 4, 2007

Exparrot, I'm looking at Duncan Emrich's "The Hodgepodge Book: An Almanac of American Folklore, Containing All Manner of Curious, Interesting, and Out-of-the-Way Information Drawn from American Folklore and Not To Be Found Anywhere Else in the World." Four Winds Press, N.Y., 1972 (LC cat card # 72-77811). It's my DH's copy, and now I know why he knows all of those odd traditions!
posted by MonkeyToes at 5:46 PM on May 4, 2007 [1 favorite]

You pored over it. Good luck with the search. Just wanted to chime in that the American Boys Handy Book is great.
posted by Alt F4 at 7:10 PM on May 4, 2007

MonkeyToes...you officially rock.
I'm not %100 sure thats it, but man it's temptingly close.

Of course, its also $45. ugh.

Maybe it's not that tempting...
posted by exparrot at 7:18 AM on May 8, 2007

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