Table of Contents - Volume 11, number 1 (March 2006) - 24 pages
This action figure, known throughout the Pacific, begins just like ‘Ten Men’ (a popular figure first described by Mrs. Jayne). The initial pattern, which represents heavy rain, can be partially dissolved and reformed over and over again.
Islanders claim that lightning strikes cause the pattern to dissolve.
When making a complex string figure, Melanesians often remove loops from each hand and reset them in a different order to achieve a desired arrangement. The following figure is prime example.
In this rather long series, an action figure is formed that represents two fish swimming apart. According to legend, the fish escaped from a net that had a hole in it. Next, the figure is partially dissolved and the entire weaving sequence is repeated. Remarkably, a different figure results. The second figure represents an intact net (no escaping fish are seen).
In this amusing figure, which represents someone raising their eyebrows, the amount of tension applied to the little finger loops is altered. As a result, the strings shift and a second design appears.
This splendid figure, known throughout the Pacific, appeared in the June 2001 issue but without the surprise ending.
In Fiji the pattern is called ‘Full Morning’ because the design springs into view just like the rising sun. In the Solomon Islands the figure represents a flock of birds that suddenly appears out of nowhere and pauses to feed. But when startled, the flock scatters in all directions without leaving a trace (the figure dissolves).
Simple action figures are often the most effective.
In this figure a triangle represents the mouth of a toothless old man. As thumbs tug on adjacent strings the triangle contracts and expands, thus simulating a mouth chewing.
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