Monday, November 3, 2008


Oldest Son and Youngest Son have a new obsession - Tazos. Obsession began when one of Oldest Son's Mexican friends gave him one.

A Tazo is a round, flat decorative disk. The object of the game is to flick a Tazo against another Tazo to flip it. If you flip it then you get to keep the Tazo. Game protocol dictates a decision at beginning of play on whether you are playing "for keeps." It seems a lot like marbles to me.

It took us a awhile to figure out where to get the Tazos. Youngest Son first thought was "Can you order some off internet?" Google research indicated no. You get them in bags of chips (we cannot completely escape manipulative marketing directed at kids.) So yes, we bought the individual size bags of chips. We provided a base of about 4 Tazos each. Oldest Son then purchased a few more at School Bazaar last Friday and won a few that afternoon. So Youngest Son and Oldest Son had a respectable 11 each.

While talking to Oldest Son on the phone , he excitedly shared his Tazos tally for the day. First he lost 4 then he gave two to friend for assisting him on his homework then he won big - something like 15 Tazos.

Decision making. Risk taking. Negotiation. Sharing. Compromise. Winning. Losing. Disappointment. Sportsmanship. Ownership. Responsibility. Bartering. Independence. Consequences. Rewards. Losses. Giving. Strategy. Skill. An impressive list of learnings from a childhood game.


Bob Mrotek said...

Here is a good site for the history of tazos:

American Mommy in Mexico said...

B - THANKS!!! This site is very informative and I plan to share it with the boys.

Steve Cotton said...

Your comparison with marbles is apt. Play always teaches various layers of social skills -- something video games can only provide in a very shallow way. I have always known them as pogs. But the local kids seemed only to collect them, not play with them. What a pity!

VisitLaManzanilla said...

Yes, pokemon has been replaced by Tazo's! And yes we have bought more bags of individual serving sized chips in the last 6 weeks then we've purchased in the last 6 years.

Theresa in Mèrida said...

They also make me think of pogs. My girls did pogs, I think. Or maybe it was my little sister?
We played marbles and some other street games.

Vamanos said...

Aha! My girls have collected them from chips but I had no idea what they were. Thanks!

ibis said...

Every drawer I open, the buttom of the school backbacks and beneath the car seats are full with tazos. I wonder where my girls get them, from because they dont officially buy chips. I ask them and they tell me that friends from school give have them. Whenever they find a big metal tazo that I now know comes in the HUUUGE chip bags, they negotiate with it with other school kids, kind of baseball cards or some tradding good. The question remains? How many chips are kids eating and parents buying to have all these tazos around. Why dont they implatate them in apples or put them in milk bottles?

American Mommy in Mexico said...

S - We have not allowed our kids to have video games yet. Someday I am sure we will but not yet. In the meantime - tazos works.

V - we recognized early on that we would have to committ to a set number of chip bags or we would be drowning in chips!

T - I think these are very much like pogs.

V - Glad we could help solve the mystery!

I - I am so with you. Consumerism is alive and strong even here in Mexico!