John Kersey, Staff Writer

Everywhere you look, everywhere you turn, anywhere you are, you will see these all around campus.

A Japanese toy by the name of “kendama” is rapidly spreading around Poway High School. The kendama consists of the “ken” (handle) attached by a string to the “tama” (ball).

It seems as there might be a real reason for why the kendama is growing so quickly but there really is no reason for it other than to mess around.

The forerunner of today’s kendama went on sale in 1919 but never made its way to America until around 2006.

The kendama has a “big cup,” “small cup,” “base cup,” and “spike.” There are over 1,000,000 different combinations of tricks you can do, and you can even make up your own tricks and combos, such as landing the ball on those cups or spikes or even landing them in between them in the little slots spread throughout the Ken. 

Landing it between the spike and the big cup, is called birdy. “Swinging birdy is my favorite trick because it is really challenging, but once I mastered it I was able to beat everyone I played,” sophomore James Speck said.

Another trick you can do is when you land the ball on a cup and then throw it up and spin the ken around the ball and catch it on the cup again. This is called an orbit, which happens to be sophomore Troy Sorenson’s favorite move. “The orbit is my favorite trick because you can do it as many times as you want, and if you don’t do it right, the string will get caught inside and make you fail,” Sorenson said. 

Those without a kendama can share with friends, and play with or against them. Even though she does not have one, sophomore Bella Bevilacqua still joins in on the fun. “ Even though I don’t own a kendama, I play against my friends and always have fun,” Bevilacqua said.