Chinese handball n [See quot 1984] orig and chiefly NYC Also called king-queen n
A variant of the street game of handball in which the ball has to bounce on the ground before hitting the wall.
1923 Chat (Flatbush ed.) (Brooklyn NY) 23 June 2/7, The athletic activities for the near future include Chinese handball, punchball, basketball and football. 1943 Brooklyn Eagle (NY) 22 Aug 8/4, Older girls also play handball, boxball, Chinese handball and jump rope. 1962 Redlands Daily Facts (CA) 18 Dec 4/5, Mr. Wagner said the program at the school grounds will include basketball, volleyball, croquet, tetherball, chinese handball, foursquare, ping pong and various quiet games. 1964 Daily Press (Newport News VA) 22 Mar mag sec 5/3, And one can still hear mentioned such games as cops and robbers, spin the bottle, ringalevio, fox-in-the-gulley, swing the statue, Chinese handball, marbles . . , cowboys and Indians, box ball and slap ball. 1970 DARE (Qu. EE33, . . Outdoor games) Inf NY118, King-queen—Chinese handball; NY241, King-queen or Chinese handball—each player gets a cement block section of the sidewalk. First is king, then queen, jack, etc. 1980 NY Daily News (NY) 11 Apr 17/1, Strolling up 42d St., DiBretto passed the City University Graduate Center. Inside the covered plaza, three men from DiBretto’s office were playing Chinese handball with a blue Spauldeen. 1981 Verbatim Letters NYC (as of 1930s), Chinese Handball was played against any convenient wall and was, in all respects the same game as conventional handball, except that the ball was required to bounce on the ground before it hit the wall. 1984 Sunday Times (Scranton PA) 14 Oct sec B 3/3 NYC, Handte . . said the game began circa 1926–1933 at Public School No. 32 in Flushing, Queens, N.Y. . . “Back then kids had a superstition that everything was done backwards in China,” he said. “In real handball, you don’t bounce the ball on the way in. Somebody before my time called it Chinese handball.” 2000 Los Angeles Times (CA) 26 Jan sec B 4/5, They remembered her as a studious and cheery girl who . . liked to wear ponytails and play Chinese handball. 2014 NY Times (NY) 26 Aug (Internet) Brooklyn NYC, I showed one of the kids playing what we once called Chinese handball or “king-queen” how to take a video with my phone. (The kids now called this game watermelon.)