Wednesday, April 19, 2006


Passover is over, just in time for one day of work followed by the weekend.

What's been happening?

Not much in the way of games.

In shul this morning I saw a young child slowly and methodically putting together some puzzles with 9 or 12 pieces. It took a lot of brow furrowing and turning, but eventually it all came together. I was thinking how this was a bad lesson for life, since in real life success is not necessarily your reward for a job well done how inspirational and lovely it was to see a child learning and growing.

Later in the day Rachel and I attended a "end of holiday" gathering. A hassidic story was being told, but I sat down with the kids who were playing Monopoly until Rachel told me that I was being rude.

The edition was the Millennium edition. It comes in a silver cookie tin. The pieces are a cellphone, a monitor (which they call a computer), a spokeless bicycle, and so on. The money was ... how shall I say? Disgusting. It was translucent and looked like Monopoly money that had been soaked in grease. But it was intentionally printed that way. And the board sparkled. Ugh.

I was curious as to how I might feel about playing the game with the real rules: no free parking money, auctioning off properties, and so on, but I never got the chance. I did get the chance to teach the correct rules to the stunned children, who couldn't believe that they didn't get double the money for landing on Go and so on until I pointed this out in the rules.

I got to observe the game for a while, and I have to say that even with the correct rules, it is a mind-numbing experience to watch. Roll, land, buy. Roll, land, pay. Roll, land, pick card, pay/take. That's about it.

I generously assume that with adults there is at least a little more interest during the trading portion of the game. I assume that really really good players might even make future trades, even before the game started, such as "I will trade you this if I land on it for that if you land on it, and you won't have to pay me rent the first two times." Or something.

But really, there is just nothing you can do to get rid of the problem of those infernal dice. Except play something else.


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