Memory Lane: Adults at Play

Image result for images of original monopoly board

As a little boy, I watched in fascination, and not a little envy, when my aunts sat down to play Monopoly. Joan, Millie, and Gertie, usually with my mother and father joining them–and all that cool stuff going on: I used to poke around Grandpa’s house trying to find the Monopoly board, but could never guess where they’d put it.

I was used to kiddy games like Chutes and Ladders. But this game sounded all grown-up. Railroads! Houses and Hotels! And what exactly was that thing called “Community Chest”? And could that possibly be real money they were tossing around?

Eventually they bought a new Monopoly game and handed down the old game to my cousins, my brother and sister, and me. How intriguing it was, to study all those Rules and figure out how to play the game properly. Our reading comprehension still had some growing up to do, but I’m convinced it grew faster because we were so hot to play Monopoly and we just kept reading and re-reading those rules until we got them right. Or almost right.

Any of those adults could have taken over and taught us how to play, but some rare wisdom told them that it’d be a lot more fun for us if we doped it out for ourselves. It took us longer to learn the game that way, but so what? Working at it until we got it right was great!

I’m afraid that kind of wisdom’s even rarer, nowadays.

But I still love Monopoly, and I still have the game that Grandma gave me for Christmas, long ago. Complete with bills, rules, and cards scotch-taped together where necessary.

About leeduigon

I have lived in Metuchen, NJ, all my life. I have been married to my wife Patricia since 1977. I am a former newspaper editor and reporter. I was also the owner-operator of my own small business for several years. I wrote various novels and short stories published during 1980s and 1990s. I am a long-time student of judo and Japanese swordsmanship (kenjutsu). I also play chess, basketball, and military and sports simulations. View all posts by leeduigon

6 responses to “Memory Lane: Adults at Play

  • UnKnowable

    The greatest gift was allowing you to learn for yourself. I loved Monopoly when I was a kid. It’s been a while since I’ve played.

    Like

  • Linda Sorci

    Monopoly! Yay! We had fun even from the start of the game trying to decide what we wanted to ‘be’ – the shoe, the hat, the car, the dog . . . and then to become a tycoon with houses and hotels, and sometimes trying so hard not to go bankrupt! Wow! 🙂

    Like

  • David Ingram

    My neighborhood buddies and I played Monopoly for hours and hours at a time – we loved it. I believe it helped me to excel in arithmetic and learn the value of property. We developed some rules of our own to make the game more competitive.

    Like

  • Phoebe

    My cousin Jerry and I used to play Monopoly for hours also. In fact, when it looked as though someone was going to win and thereby end the game, the winner-to-be would usually cheat in the other person’s favor, just to keep the game going. It was an eye-opener for me, much later in life, to find that some people played cut-throat Monopoly. For Jerry and me, all the games (I also remember Rich Uncle, among others) were just ways of having fun together.

    And yes, of course we learned on out own. The instructions were pretty straightforward.

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