Friday, July 17, 2009
Friday Five: GAMES!
Jan is looking at games for the family vacation. I am not much of games player. But it is fun to do this Friday Five.
In less than three weeks, my family, including children and their partners, will be gathering in Seattle, WA for 12 days. After various days in Seattle sightseeing and in Bellingham seeing family, we will travel to the coast of Washington State to spend three nights in a large rented house. With nine adults (from almost 20 years old and up), I am thinking that we need to have some activities pre-planned--like GAMES! (Any ideas will be appreciated.)
So this Friday Five is about games, so play on ahead. . . .
1. Childhood games?
When I was a child, we played pickup games of baseball, football, whatever we had on hand. Some of us had equipment and some of us did not. I learned to catch softballs without a glove before my folks had enough to buy me a glove. After Christmas we would drag discarded Christmas trees to build forts for mudball fights. We learned strategies of attack and defend of which Sun Tzu would have been proud. We didn’t need any equipment for that. Make believe was an important part of our childhood games. Most of us didn’t have TVs until later in our childhood so we learned to play Cops and Robbers, G-man, Wonderwoman from the comic books or the radio. Of course we played Cowboys and Indians which probably isn’t PC anymore but in TX?....of course we played Cowboys and Indians! Our imaginations were creative and fertile. A finger was a gun, a broomstick was a horse and a towel tied around the neck was a superman cape. All we needed was another kid to play with.
2. Favorite and/or most hated board games? Because we didn’t have many board games I remember only parchesi, checkers, Chinese checkers, dominos and yatsi. Monopoly was a colossal bore for me. I couldn’t understand how you could charge someone money for just landing on your property. It wasn’t fair in my young mind. I have always been a communalist at heart.
3. Card games?
We played fish and slap jack. We didn’t have special decks then, just the discarded decks that some of the adults would hand down to us: Rummy, gin, poker with matchsticks, and later, cribbage. Finally, we learned canasta, bid whist and pinochle. I was never really good at them, but it was good for rainy days. J plays bridge but I can’t count cards worth a damn.
4. Travel/car games?
License plates (seeing how many different states we could count on one trip), Trying to find all the letters of the alphabet in license tags. We sang a lot too. All the camp songs were sung on the way to camp and back. There was no radio in the car during my childhood. I think I can still sing a pretty good rendition of Skidimerinkidink, Skidimerinkidoo.
5. Adult pastimes that are not video games? READING!! Reading funny books outloud while others are washing dishes, or fixing dinner. Doing the NY Times cross word puzzle as a community project. Somebody has to have a dictionary and an atlas. Handwork—knitting, sewing, tatting, quilting, while carrying on a conversation with others. Word games—scrabble, etc. I am a lousy speller so this is not fun for me.
Bonus: Any ideas for family vacations or gatherings? I still think that a good game of softball or red rover with all members of the family playing, or volley ball or badminton or even basketball HORSE are fun. Croquet can be fun if you have space. Even grandma can play HORSE even if she can’t run anymore.