Monday, April 18, 2011

games night

One of the main benefits of having children is having people around to play cards with. Iris and Lola and I often play crazy eights or a delightful game called "Rat-a-Tat Cat." Lola refuses to play poker because it is too heavily identified with Iris (once Iris had a marathon poker session with another child, ending in cleaning out the other child's accumulated allowance entirely, which we made her pay back later). We've tried many other games, but veering away from crazy eights or Rat-a-Tat Cat usually ends in disaster, and last night was no exception.

Last night after dinner I started up a game of Fan Tan, a card game we learned a few years ago when visiting relatives. Lola, who had wanted to play Apples to Apples, was indignantly fussy after her father's victory at Fan Tan. I said, "Lola, if you said, 'I'd like to get Apples to Apples' now, that would be a lot nicer than your screaming and crying, 'I wanted to play Apples to Apples." Lola cut me off in midsentence: "Please, darling exalted Lord Mommy, I would like to get Apples to Apples."

Sadly Apples to Apples didn't go any better for Lola than Fan Tan had. At one point it was the Sober Husband's job to judge, selecting the best fit for "protective", and he was determined to select Lola's card because she hadn't won a single hand yet. He peered closely into Lola's face, looking for a tell to see which card she'd played. Unfortunately however Lola was charmed by the card I'd played and reacted most to that one, so he chose that, and Lola burst out in tears. "Oops! I made a mistake! 'Flying Squirrels' is what I meant to pick!" he said.

Iris was outraged. "Flying squirrels, they aren't even protective! Why did you play that? Flying squirrels!"

"Flying squirrels are famous for how protective they are of their young," I said.

"I've watched as many nature shows as you have, and I don't remember that," said Iris fiercely.

"I don't just watch television, I've traveled," I said. "I've been to places like Borneo, and flying squirrels are famous for being so protective of their young. They will just FLY AT YOU."

Iris grew more and more indignant, not accepting this. I continued. "And don't step between a flying squirrel and its nuts! That would be a terrible day for you, indeed."

Around this point it became clear that carrying on a civilized game of Apples to Apples was no longer possible. The children wandered off to create their own Apples to Apples cards, with such curiously-omitted-from-the-real-game subjects as "Lola's Buttocks."


Silliyak said...

Not stepping between anything and it's nuts seems like sage advice to me.

hughman said...

"One of the main benefits of having children is having people around to play cards with."


the Drunken Housewife said...

I should have also mentioned that another prime benefit is having someone to fetch you drinks.

Anonymous said...

You don't have to give them quarters to get your drinks?! I went wrong somehwere! :)


backgammon online said...

At least you have some playing cards available. When you have kids, they'll ask for it anyway.

Billy S. said...

I love playing cards with my kids. I can make up my own rules and they never complain. And if they win they will be the happiest kids in the planet.

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