Last evening, as I waited for the F train on the way to see Yo La Tengo, I saw this guy doing amazing yo-yo tricks on the platform. When I was a kid, I recall Duncan yo-yos being the fad before skateboards. But at least last night, at Jay Street/Boro Hall, and then aboard the train, it was enjoying a renaissance.
His name is Justin Weber. In our two-stop chat,told me the modern yo-yo was invented in the Philippines, and brought to America in the 1920s by Pedro Flores. Shortly after, Donald Duncan bought the Flores Yo-Yo Company and trademarked the term - which in the Ilokano language, means “come back”.
Weber’s aluminum-body yo-yo was craft-built in Canada. There is a World Yo-Yo-Competition, (in which he competed).