Wishing everyone a safe and enjoyable holiday season!
Growing up in an active family of 7, allowed for games of all sorts to be played regularly. Beginning in the 1970's, ping pong, billiards, pinball, and wiffle ball were some of our favorites. Being in Kentucky meant basketball was huge and we spent countless hours playing and watching. Football was also very instrumental as Louisville is home to many fans and players alike.
Then there was Brickpong in 2015. It all began in our basement with a handmade 8ft by 3ft table that appeared to be best served as a game table. In lieu of a net, three old bricks were repurposed from our garage and placed on their sides across the middle on the table. The first brick was placed in the center of the table. The other two bricks were placed in a similar fashion, each one an inch from the edge of the table. This placement of the 2 outside bricks created a 5 inch gap or "alley" on each side of the middle brick.
My son and I grabbed a couple of ping pong paddles, a ball, and began to rally back and forth. Immediately it was fun as we discovered the bouncing of the ball off the bricks to be pleasurable and challenging. The term "brickochet" was chosen to describe the ball bouncing off the bricks in random trajectories. Brickpong was born, but the name did not last.
The initial set of rules referred to the "east and west alleys" in describing the two 5 inch gaps between the 3 bricks. A four inch wide stripe was added across the middle of the table to complete the "alley". The bricks were replaced with blocks made of wood. The reduced density of the wood blocks allowed the ball to bounce slower, yielding longer more controlled rallies.
The most liberating rule changes involved allowing the ball to bounce multiple times on each player's side of the alley, and concluding the rally when the ball fell off the table top. These changes also made it entirely clear who wins or loses the rally. The name Alleypong came to mind to more accurately describe the game at hand.
Most importantly, feedback from hundreds of brave participants over the years has helped shape this game to what it is today, of which we are forever grateful!