hate the game, love the playa

A reminder–there are less than 12 hours left to enter to win the British H.P. cover. So far, it looks like there’s only one entry, so it won’t be that hard to at least come in second.

And while we’re on the subject of kid things we love, I thought I’d turn the tables & write about a kid thing I hate. There are lots of kid games that are merely annoying. (Chutes and Ladders, I’m looking at you.) But somewhere we’ve acquired a Milton Bradley game that I truly despise–it’s called Guess Who?

guess-who.jpg

It’s a two-player game. Each person has the same 24 cards on their board–each card pictures a different individual. Each player picks a yellow card that matches one of the board cards, and then takes turns asking the other player questions that narrow down the identity of the yellow card. They can only be yes or no questions (ie–“does your person have blonde hair?”). The person who narrows it down the fastest & guesses the right person wins.

Why do I loathe it so? Well, first of all, the construction. The game falls apart constantly while you’re playing it. While that’s merely frustrating for me, it is infuriating for the Bee, because she isn’t always dexterous enough to put it back together, and if I have to put it back together for her, then I see her pieces. It’s clear to me that they made it very cheaply–it wouldn’t have been hard to produce the face cards and their holders as one item, instead of in two pieces, but I’m sure that would have made it more expensive.

But beyond my irritation with the cheap construction, is my sheer animus about the fact that the default character in this game is a white man (and a white man with hair, at that!). Out of 24 characters, only 5 are women (adding insult to injury, the Potato seems to have lost two of the women cards in our game, leaving 3). Only five of the characters are black (one of which is a woman). None are Asian, Latino or Native American. I guess the lesson this game is teaching is that it’s hard to tell white men apart? The 15 of them come in great variation–bald (4) and with hair; blonde (4), white-haired (4), two flavors of brunette (4), redhead (3)*; wearing glasses (3) or well-sighted; bearded (3) or clean-shaven. Nobody else has this kind of variety.

What’s up with that?

And while we’re on the subject, what multi-racial games for kids are out there that I don’t know about?

*Does not equal 15 due to the fact that men can be both bald and have facial hair.

August 8, 2007. family life, thoughtful parenting. 6 comments.