Tuesday, 1 May 2012


Tonka owns.

If you don't know what Tonka is, it's a series of play vehicles from a long ass time ago. In the 1990s there was a revival of the die-cast metal construction vehicles, and I am proud to say I have some of these toys and used them on a very regular basis in schoolyard folly. I had the crane, two plows, and big metal dump truck.They were so cool because you could move the parts and and load them up with shit and haul it around. Very useful at the beach or sand pit to build your dream castle. Only peasants used the bucket and shovel!

Tonka also had a series of computer games aimed at young children that I was completely enamoured with. Kids used to call me Tonka Joe (name of the main character) because of my obsession with the games and the metal toys they were based on. Fitting!

My favourites were Tonka Construction, Tonka Search and Rescue, Tonka Garage, and Tonka Raceway. In Raceway you could spin around in the car you made in Garage, and Search and Rescue had an epic adventure feel to it. Tonka Construction was always my favourite though. It was the first time I ever saw a black person (warning: childhood race relations ahead!), so naturally I thought he was made of chocolate.Speaking of chocolate, I used to also believe the boulders on the cover of the box were Nesquik cereal bits and that you'd get to mine those in the game. It wasn't till later that my dream of chocolate was crushed by how doesn't take on the form of humans and precious minerals in the real world. 

Those were better days.

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