Cereal is boring, right? WRONG. Now you may say, Mary, what a ridiculous way to start a blog post. And you’d be right, but cereal is in no way boring, and I am very passionate about it. What do I get from cereal? Well fiber for one, heart healthy grains, the sense that I’m in a commercial (and yes, I have practiced that “I am totally enjoying this cereal commercial look, who hasn’t). But most of all, I get… my childhood. Well at least the technology part of it.
Cereal boxes contained the best “free” prizes in the world. It had prizes like Hotwheels cars, spoons with lightsaber handles(!!!!) and little spongebob toys but the best prizes were CD’s with classic games like Oregon Trail, Amazon Trail, Liberty Kids, Backyard Baseball, and my personal favorite, Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? What more could a kid want? General Mills and Kellogg’s were seriously my best friends in the whole world. My childhood was chiefly made up of playing outside because we had a big yard and lots of neighborhood kids to play with. Due to this, computer time was severely limited and honestly not very desired at the time but, because of the largely educational value of many of these cereal computer games, we were allowed to play.
What kid from the 2000’s hasn’t played Oregon Trail? I probably started about a thousand journeys because the best part was making your wagon train in Independence. You got to pick a name, a profession, and a wagon leader AND decide which supplies you were going to buy. Would your strategy be to buy all ammunition and fishing supplies so that you could spend a ridiculous time hunting and figuring out how to fish? This selection seemed to be popular with my brothers; one time I’m pretty sure that they killed like 20 buffalos in a buffalo stampede and had 3,000 lbs of meat…I don’t think the Indians liked them very much. Or would you actually try to reach the end of the trail, picking intelligent people and buy medicine and vegetables so that your travelers wouldn’t die of dysentery and scurvy by the next town (an all too common occurrence). Also, I don’t believe that any wagon could have capsized in rivers as much as all that. I think I may have won/actually finished the game twice…maybe.
My favorite game, Carmen Sandiego, was so awesome! For those that don’t know, I pity you. This game was a nerdy kids dream with word puzzles, mystery and hidden item games. You were agent 13 and had to free all of the previous agents in order to get to catch Carmen, this evil genius, and you had to travel the whole world and solve puzzles to free the agents. I’m pretty sure I learned at least half of my vocabulary words and all of the spelling for them with this game. Liberty Kids was great too, you went around interviewing people about the American Revolution and its battles and “meeting” important people like George Washington, Ben Franklin and Abigail Adams. I learned a whole lot from this game as well and my love of history was certainly influenced by this silly little adventure game that I got in a cereal box.
All the other games, Clue, Amazon Trail and Backyard Baseball, to name a few, were just as cool and I spent way too much time playing them as well but they were all we had in the way of computer/video game entertainment at the time. However, the best part of all of these games was that they came with cereal. Yes, I love cereal. And that’s okay because the games came with awesome cereals like Lucky Charms, Trix and Honey Nut Cheerios, which, we all know, are delicious. So that’s my bit of 90’s and early 2000’s nostalgia for the night and hopefully I’ll be back soon with another random subject. It is Christmas break after all!!!
**insert happy dance here**
Thanks for Reading! 🙂