i miss mumblety peg

Ah, the great knife games of our youth!

Mumblety peg was a game we played at camp where you would flick a pocket knife off various parts of your body and try to make the blade “stick” face down into the ground.

(Not to be confused with the knife games where you’d stab around your fingers or throw a knife as close as possible to your foot. Although, I understand those were great fun too.)

In mumblety peg, you’d flip the knife off your palm, elbow, etc., working it up to your forehead. You had two chances each turn. If you took a third chance and the knife didn’t stick into the ground you had to start from scratch. (Pun intended.) First one to make it off all body parts and then back to the beginning was the winner.

During course of play, you’d get little nicks and cuts all over your palms, knees, and wrists. We played quite frequently at camp in the 70s. Although, even then, we were told that if we got caught our knives would be taken away. (Never had mine taken away tho.)

Recently, I was quite pleased to learn that mumblety peg was created (or at least tremendously well-documented) by legendary Boy Scout emeritus Dan Beard. And, as a tribute, I considered spending a day at my son’s BSA summer camp teaching it to all the kids, but I thought it unlikely that the other parents would appreciate it.

Here’s the rules from Dan:


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s