Wednesday, March 22, 2006

For The Love of The Game

I have always loved to play games. Monopoly is my all time favourite and I can get a little carried away with enforcing the rules. For my benefit of course. We used to rent a cottage at Crane Lake every summer and Monopoly was our evening ritual. Cries of “buy it” (when we landed on a property for sale) and “mine” (when someone landed on our place and owed us money) could be heard echoing across the lake.

RISK was another great way to spend a rainy Saturday afternoon. You could conquer the world while mom brought you cookies and milk. I was never a very good loser and was a terrible winner. Once I got he upper hand and pushed you down into Australia there was no mercy. None.

Playing these and other fine games are not only a great way to have fun, but also to get to know people. Some of my fondest memories of my grandmother are of playing euchre with her and her politely telling you that you played well. But could have done better if you played you cards ‘right.’ Not long ago I hosted a games night and it was quite interesting to see how involved some people were.

We started with a rousing game of win-lose-or draw. It was boys vs. girls and I say this as God as my witness, I would not have wanted Lord Fauntleroy as a teacher growing up. We guessed ‘feather the nest,’ ‘feather a nest,’ ‘feather my nest’ but never got around to ‘feather YOUR nest’ and let me tell you did we hear about it. The dry erase marker almost took out poor Alberta Boy’s eye as it flew across the room and we all got a sound tongue lashing. To top things off, when he yelled the answer at us the girls pounced on their chance to steal and got a point. Overall, not a good round for the boys. We were all very attentive after that.

Hoopla pits everyone against a timer as you have to draw, act and do a variety of other tasks to make people guess your clue. We were all very excited and mindful of the timer as it ticked down to our inevitable doom. All of us except one of the dollhouse girls. No names here. She is great at playing the game, once she gets started. But therein lays the problem. I am sure our (read my) incessant yelling didn’t help ease any pressure but come on here! We must beat the little plastic timer!!!

I also learned that drinking and Rumoli (it is poker meets board game) do not mix. Each person at the table found out just what happens when you put a cocktail between Underpants Boy and money that belongs to him. To be fair, he had to get his money quickly because if another card is played, you forfeit. (Lord Fauntleroy, you know, being a Lord and all, was a little more careless with his lucre and I am still finding dimes and nickels down behind my radiators.) After the Pink girl from the dollhouse had a Cosmo dumped in her lap, I a glass of white wine and sister a glass of red, we amended the rule to simply calling the money and then collecting it at the end of the round. Despite this, there was one more spill and we all thought that a sign that it was time to wrap things up.


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