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April 28, 2019

I was strolling along through the streets today when I saw a bulky green rotund object ahead of me on the pavement, and as I got closer I saw it was… a discarded gonk!

A gonk. Remember those? If you were born in the 60s or 70s you probably do, but I’m not sure if anyone much under 40 would know about them. Yet once both the thing and the word were ubiquitous. Everyone had at least one gonk in their bedroom. A gonk. It was a cross between a toy and an ornament, I suppose: a big round egglike knitted form with grinning features stuck on its woollen face and small hands and feet splaying outwards. It was a friendly, silly sort of object which seemed to express a very 1970s idea of childish irresponsibility, freedom and whimsicality: the word itself, gonk, somehow suggests this.

Well, I thought gonks had gone for good, but that abandoned one I saw today suggests that they are still around. Or have I seen the last ever gonk?

From → Uncategorized

  1. Craig permalink

    Googles “Gonk”

    I’m not familiar with this toy. I’m not yet 40 as you say. Having looked it up, was Humpty Dumpty on the kids TV show Play School a gonk? This I do remember.

  2. Yes, I’d classify Play School’s Humpty as a gonk. There were other types of gonk – furry ones – but the round woollen knitted ones like Humpty were also known as gonks.

  3. Simon Carter permalink

    I do remember them. And Trolls which were essentially toys whose hair could be brushed. It was a simpler time.

  4. Craig permalink

    The only difference with Trolls is that they never went away, you can still buy them now (the classic style not the film versions). Their continued popularity is presumably why the film was made.

    Gonks however………. You should have rescued it Brandon. It probably was the last Gonk left alive!

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