Puerto Rico has a long and storied history. The beautiful island nation is both part of the USA, but still is its own autonomous island. One of the oldest Spanish colonies in the Americas, Puerto Rico has a very rich heritage comprised of many different types of people that have come, gone and stayed on this tropical paradise for eons. Part Caribbean, Part Latino, and Part American, Puerto Rico offers lucky visitors the best of all worlds and a true melting pot of sights, sounds, tastes, and scents.
Rums of Puerto Rico, a company that has been producing premium Caribbean rums for more than 450 years, has created a great little series for the History Channel featuring inventions and innovations of recent centuries called the, “Rum Times”. I just watched one about the history of ball sports. The focus of the video was on the interesting history of rubber ball sports. In the 16th century, Spanish conquistadors took a group of Aztec men from Mexico across the ocean back to Spain to showcase an ancient game they used to play.
The Spanish were very impressed with the game, not so much for the foreign men and the actual sport, but for the fact that the ball they were using bounced, which was even more intriguing. The ball the Aztec men played with was made from rubber and they are thought to be the first to use rubber in sports balls.
The video continues showing the narrator talking about how other sports using rubber balls have evolved including baseball, basketball, soccer and American football.
The Rum Times is very well made and at the end of the following episode, the narrator heads out of some wooden doors to a popping party showing how Rums of Puerto Rico has been an integral part of the celebratory end of every sport for the better part of 500 years. After the fiesta scene, a new rum drink is featured called, “The Ball Game”, inspired by the invention of sports.