[caption id="attachment_6165" align="alignnone" width="800"] By Associated Press (Ottumwa High School yearbook) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons[/caption]Foam fingers and foam hands have been a popular sports spirit item since they were introduced in 1971 at a high school boys state basketball final. However, the first prototype wasn't made of foam. Instead, the giant foam finger at that game was made of hardware cloth and papier-mâché. Since then, many different manufacturing companies have been producing foam fingers and foam hand gestures in bulk.
They have become a staple item at football and basketball games.
However, foam fingers and foam hands aren't just for sports games. They have been very effectively used in advertising, as well as for other "unsanctioned" uses.
The passion that spirit items are intended to stir up inside basketball, baseball and football fans is a powerful tool that unites sports enthusiasts and intimidates visiting teams. This is all done in the name of adding to the fun of the game, but such...