That Old Crooked Stick

As I sit here and look out at the beauty of the trees that surround me.  I have marveled at each limb that shows its growth.  In the spring the first signs of the buds of the leaves that show tinges of green and then burst forth with their leaves appearing.

Yet, it is the winter that brings the mystery of that same limb for it then is bare and shows a different beauty with its twist and turns.  (Nature does not allow a perfectly straight limb.)  Only man can alter this to that perfection.

Early humans used these as clubs and projectiles in all cultures around the world to hunt small game.  It was also used as weapons when they added a sharp stone to the end and wrapped it with the bark of that same limb.

The Egyptians used throwing sticks to hunt small game as this shows in several wall paintings.  The Aborigines of Australia used boomerangs which are found in many cultures and will return to the user if thrown properly.  Still, the choice of weapon of most cultures was the heavy non-returning stick that could be used as a wielding club or knife.  The Native American tribes also utilized the throwing stick to hunt rabbits and occasionally deer.

No one knows for sure how the returning boomerang was first invented.  One boomerang was discovered in a cave in Poland and was made from a mammoth's tusk.  A hunting boomerang is delicately balanced and much harder to make than a returning one.  It may have been possible that  stone age hunters trying to "Tune" their hunting sticks to fly straight found that curving and flatting the sticks gave them a bit more control. 


My personal first experience with this   Crooked Stick taught me Three- things.  (a)  Never stand in front of the picture window on your first throwing attempt.  (b)  It must be thrown at a 45 degree angle with a sharp flick of the wrist.  (c)  This as many other skills takes practice and patients.  Unlike early man I am very grateful that I do not have to rely on this Crooked Stick to provide food for my table.

Yet, today we have taken that same Crooked Stick and found many useful advantages to this tree limb.


Walking Sticks
Walking Sticks

•  Walking Sticks:

I find that old  Crooked Stick  has many advantages.  When hiking along trails it can make a step over a fallen tree or any obstacle that much easier for balance.  Walking sticks are usually longer and many have wrist straps.

•  Walking Cane:

The cane that aids so many of us in our daily routines of just standing or walking.  We can now choose certain style or color.  Some are very beautiful with their ornate handle grips.  Some are carved with intricate designs, others are plain.


This same old  Crooked Stickhas many benefits other than on a sunny day strolling through the park.  I always have one in my car for just such emergence's as it can be very useful on snow or getting across those icy patches that one might skate across and then have a crash landing.

Yes, this old Crooked Stick  now has a new duty added to its list.  More people are carrying them for a form of defense.  In the world that we live in today with so much crime they have been coming to their own.  Many a senior has warded off a purse snatcher with a good whack!

Now the next time you fuss about that tree in the yard dropping limbs and you picking them up, stop and give it a little more respect for where it has come from---and some of its benefits that it has given to mankind.

That old Crooked Stick may just be your best friend someday.

♥  He who plants a tree, plants living---hope! 

Comments 18 comments

john guilfoyle profile image

john guilfoyle 7 years ago

that took me back...when i was 10 years old i saved up my money and purchased a boomerang...I needed an open area to test it out....there was a sand pit nearby so i ventured forth filled with excitement...there was only one patch of trees...yup, on my first throw that crooked stick veered into those trees upon its was i bummed...i spent hours searching but to no avail...i returned every day for a week or so...2 this day i wonder where that crooked stick went....i'll never b able 2 straighten out that mystery...

hey Ginn, did u notice that when that dude dropped his purse his throws got a lot better? JUst kidding, any fool could notice that it is a manly shoulder pouch...

anyways, bless u Ginn and have a wonderful day...many thanks for an interesting and illuminating article...I was unaware that boomerangs were found outside of australia..unless mine warped time and wound up in Poland!!! ancient mystery 1965 a ten year old boy, having saved his earnings from a newspaper route purchased a seemingly ordinary....

but that's another tale 4 another time..........


Ginn Navarre profile image

Ginn Navarre 7 years ago Author

John, yes isn't it interesting what we can learn from that little CROOKED STICK?

Jerilee Wei profile image

Jerilee Wei 7 years ago from United States

My crooked stick came back, unfortunately, and left me with a near broken nose and a few bruises. My walking crooked stick saves me a lot of hassle when I fly and set off the metal detectors in security with my metal plate and six screws -- they are much more willing to accept my explanation without having to show them my scars. Great hub!

john guilfoyle profile image

john guilfoyle 7 years ago

fore shore...that number 95 on your profile picture is inadequate...I want 2 give u my points 2 bring the equation into balance.

u r a grounding influence 4 me and I am appreciative...

write on Ginn...


Ginn Navarre profile image

Ginn Navarre 7 years ago Author

Jerilee, yes indeed that's another good use for that old CROOKED STICK.

John thanks a lot for your appreciation---it means a lot.

Nancy's Niche profile image

Nancy's Niche 7 years ago from USA

Ginn, another wonderfully written article. Brings back some memories of a "crooked stick" I once had....

Ginn Navarre profile image

Ginn Navarre 7 years ago Author

Nancy, those old crooked sticks---come and go!---better hold on tight.

AdeleCosgroveBray profile image

AdeleCosgroveBray 7 years ago from Wirral, Cheshire, England.

You possess a lovely turn of phrase; I especially enjoyed your descriptions of looking at nature around you.

Ginn Navarre profile image

Ginn Navarre 7 years ago Author

Adele, welcome to our side of the pond on hubpages.

profile image

ralwus 7 years ago

Ginn this was a really cool hub. I couldn't take mine eye off the great video. Throwing stisck should be kept away from all windows and such. LOL "They rod and thy staff, they comfort me." Yes, a person with proper knowlege of using one for self defence is most dangerous and that is why walking sticks were os in use in their day. thanks for sharing this. CC

Ginn Navarre profile image

Ginn Navarre 7 years ago Author

Thanks ralwus, Yes, that first throwing of that stick suprised me too, it was coming fast--so I stupidly just got out of its way but the window didn't.

Cris A profile image

Cris A 7 years ago from Manila, Philippines

Miss Ginn

a lovely hub - an ode to the noble crooked stick. and as could be expected with your hubs, there's the added delight of reading a snippet from you past. (i love your past, if that's possible! LOL) thanks for sharing :D

Ginn Navarre profile image

Ginn Navarre 7 years ago Author

Hey Cris, I'm glad you enjoyed this simple ode to that crooked stick. It's fun to look back at ones past and laugh at all the dumb things we did and laugh about them NOW.

Feline Prophet profile image

Feline Prophet 7 years ago from India

Walking sticks are a great invention - they get you all kinds of concessions in daily life - as my mom is only just discovering! She's finally realised carrying a walking stick gets her more respect than ever!

Ginn Navarre profile image

Ginn Navarre 7 years ago Author

Feline, yes indeed that walking stick does have power in so many ways.

Becky 5 years ago

My grandmother was a teacher and when kids were not paying attention in class, she whacked the desk with her cane. She had arthritis, used a cane, and so she gave up the pointer. I overheard more than one kid talking about how she scared the heck out of them when she whacked the desk. Now they would have her for child abuse. Then, it was just getting their attention.

Ginn Navarre profile image

Ginn Navarre 5 years ago Author

Becky, yes that old cane can come in handy for many things. Thanks

walking canes for sale 5 years ago

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