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Stickball—and street games in general—are relics of an earlier time and an earlier city. It’s hard to imagine street games taking hold in a place like Los Angeles the way they did in New York in the 50s and 60s. The street was the front yard for most kids, and it saw more action from tennis shoes than tires.

Since then, the virtual world has tempted kids back inside, but the old guard is putting up a fight. A documentary called New York Street Games is bringing together Old New Yorkers like Regis Philbin and Hector Elizando to reminisce about playing Johnny-on-the-Pony and mourn the loss of the good old days. It’s a little too backward-looking for our taste, but it’s good to know what a common space looks like.

But if they’re really serious about keeping the commons alive, maybe they should give the skateboarders a break.

—R.B.

CONTRIBUTORS

  • Russell Brandom