I spent most of today cleaning out sections of the garage that store all the games we’ve been playing for the past twenty years, and some even further back than that.  Twister, Stratego, Clue, Life, Monopoly.  And not just one version, but whatever the big hit movie of the day was, like the Life game with Monsters Inc. characters, or the Harry Potter version of Clue.  These became popular because, let’s face it, these games were classics, and the only way to involve the kids was if they saw their favorite Disney character on the box.  So, the Disney Trivial Pursuit was a bit hit for the kids, and the adults were able to still enjoy a bit of competition.  And, oh the joy on the faces of my daughters, and nieces, when they knew the name of the Prince in whatever movie, or one of the characters in Little Mermaid. All their cartoon and movie-watching time was not in vain!

So, I was talking about the games.  It’s a real melancholy task, cleaning out childhood games.  Some folks hoard them, thinking they can never part with them, no matter how old their kids get.  Others try to keep them in pristine condition so they can resold on eBay, while I am happy to bring whatever still has all the pieces, and the instructions, and a box that hasn’t disintegrated yet to my local second hand thrift shop.  I am all in favor of passing the torch, letting the next generation know the fun of “sinking the battleship.” 

The games continue!

But, don’t get me wrong.  The game playing still continues in my family, and I’m sure it will for a very long time.  Just the other night we collected in Queens to play a few rounds of board games, mostly ones that don’t involve many pieces, or pages and pages of rules.  In fact, we tend not to even unpack all the pieces, nor unfold the playing board, but rather do an abbreviated version to keep the fun moving, and enjoy just the sense of play.

One game, a new one in the field, caught my attention here at the office and I offered to bring it to our game night and give it a try.  It’s called Goggle Eyes,  (no, not Google Eyes for your SEO fans), but goggle, like in the glasses.  It’s as if you were playing Pictionary with blurred vision (and for you partiers out there, I guess you already had a go-around with this).  But it’s a very cool concept when playing with the adults whose vision is already questionable.

The idea is to roll the die, and the colored dot (red, blue, green or yellow) indicates the level of blurriness the team member will have as they try and draw the object, or thing, or whatever the category is.  But, the best part are the goggles, more like big clown glasses with removable lenses, hence the ability to change the level of clear vision.  The hardest lenses to see through resemble what it’s like to look through those blurry glass blocks you see in office buildings.  You can barely see the pad of paper and tip of the pencil, let alone try to draw the Eiffel Tower, as I had to do on my turn.

We all took a turn, as we had more games to play, but I will say that for a group of all ages, it’s a winner.  I think it’s brand new and will probably be on the shelves for the holiday season, so if you are looking for an easy to learn game, that really does “draw” laughs (especially from all the ones in the group that wear tri-focals), it’s worth a go.

Another game of choice, one especially good when it’s getting late, but you still got “game” is Bunco.  This game has so few rules, it probably should have it’s own category. You roll the dice and count how many 1’s you get, then once someone gets 21 – 1’s, you move on to 2’s.  When that lucky someone gets 21, someone rings the bell (like the bellhop kind of bell), and the crowd laughs and cheers.  I think in many instances, wine is involved.  Hence the ease of the rules.


Get in the game

If you haven’t had a family game night, it’s time, and if you haven’t ever had one, just pick up one of the games mentioned and give it a go.  It’s a real easy way to spend quality time together, and with somewhat of a purpose.  And, there is nothing like hearing that bell go off, as someone hollers, “bunco!”