In the 80s we as kids were able to spend hours outside, without our parents ringing us on mobile phones to find out where we were. Dads were allowed to have an incinerator, and while all the kids were out on their bikes on a sunday afternoon, they would get out the incinerators, get out there, and burn cardboard. For no particular reason- just because it was blokey to burn things.
No one could reach you, but it didnâ€™ seem to matter and no-one minded. Everybody would go out on their BMXs and you could bet that nearly all of the kids would have spokey dokes clattering away on their wheels. The 80s equivalent of Spinners
These things were great, and youd go to the shop to get a packet and then attach every spokey dokey to your wheels and cruise around all evening. Usually the goal would be to see who could do the longest skid. Or to ride somewhere and climb trees (there was no playstation then so would couldn't virtually climb the tree, we actually had to do it)
There was none of this safety crap either - no helmet and pads etc. No - the only safety feature of the BMX was the foam strip you had across your handlebars, which offered limited protection. (Skateboards went the other way from what I remember - first you had the stupid looking ones that were really really thin - these were then replaced with the really wide ones, that had add-ons everywhere; plastic surrounds for protection, big plastic skid pad on the back, and grab rails.)
Once you had your spokey dokeys attached, decided who could do the longest skid, and climed the tree, you would get a playing card, stick it so it was poking through your spokes. Or, you could use a can of coke, stamp on it and jam it against the back tyre - you then had the motorcyle sound effect.
At the time, all of this seemed like the coolest thing to do. (Also, the cans of coke had proper ring pulls back then, and you could ping them a surprisingly far distance at someone, before sticking the can on your bike.........brilliant)
Once it was so dark, and the only thing you could see were the spokey dokes themselves, and it was really late (but probably only 8 o'clock) you would ride up to your house, get off the bike and drop it in the same movement so it crashed onto the floor as you were going in the door, go inside, have tea, and watch Gremlins or Ghostbusters or something.
Ahhh the 80s. Spokey Dokes were good.
Posted by Life in the 80's at 7:02 PM