Monday, April 20, 2009


The game, not the Shakespeare. This morning Holly the dog woke me with her morning whine saying she needed to go out. After a brisk walk with her, I returned to the domicile hoping that all was still quiet so I could go back to sleep. It was not meant to be.

The Boyo greeted me at the gate and wished me a good morning. Then we decided that since Mommy and Sweet Pea were still asleep, perhaps a quiet game would be a good idea. The Boyo's first choice was Frogs in a Bog. A delightful marble game where a player slides a little thingy that makes his opponents marbles drop into the plastic tray with a nice loud "chlank".

That was nixed quickly, and he next chose Othello. "A minute to learn, a lifetime to master." Well, we've also been working at the whole concept of "between" as well. So I figured what the heck, let's play Othello!

I showed him how to put his pieces down so that one of my white pieces was between two of his black pieces. He was still a little shady on the whole concept though, and didn't understand why he couldn't just put the pieces down in a neat pattern. I gently guided him in correct piece placement and the game progressed. Now, one very winning strategy to Othello is to capture the corners. If one can accomplish this, then one can pretty much dominate the board.

The Boyo however had not learned this strategy and had not learned that since Daddy had the corners, he was supposed to lose. He made moves that were counter intuitive due to their extreme randomness, and had the very good fortune of thwarting my normally dominating game. In the end, he won by two pieces, pretty much oblivious to how he had done it. To be fair, I was a little distracted at first by coaching him on the rules. But by mid-game, he was placing them pretty well on his own and giving me a sound thrashing!

He asked if we could play again, and my bruised ego almost said no, but I agreed, and the second game we played his way... putting all the pieces in neat patterns and flipping them back and forth. That game was a tie by confusion, and a good time was had by all.

I'm hoping that this natural ability he seems to have to be random yet successful holds out for him throughout his life!

More Later

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