MY MOTHER'S DAUGHTER
20 January 2005
Sorry, Joan. I just had to post that. It's not that I'm such a great Scrabble player. It really all depends on the luck of the draw--who gets the good tiles and whether there is space to put them. Joan has beaten me soundly in the recent past, but I've had a run of good luck lately and this game is probably the best I'll ever do, so I wanted to preserve it!
I learned at my mother's knee how to play cutthroat anything. She was never one of those mothers who let her kids win. She still isn't. She's out for blood and really gets into whatever game she is playing.
When Karen and I were kids, she would regularly whup our butts in Monopoly. I remember endless games of Monopoly, sitting on the floor around the round coffee table in the living room. She was the stereotypical slum landlord. No rent breaks for her! You paid your money or you were out.
I also learned to play canasta, a game which I spent summers playing with my cousin when we were teens. We would sit around the kitchen table day after day, munching onion and mustard sandwiches until my aunt finally shoed us outside to get some fresh air.
Now my cousin, my mother and I play canasta and my mother is gleeful whenever she's winning, angry when she loses (ok--it's "play anger" but still she, who is graceful in all things, is definitely not a gracous loser. I have seen her throw a deck of cards across the table. The only reason she doesn't throw them on the floor is that she's a super tidy person and it would mess up her house! [I love my mother and love giving her a hard time.]).
In fact my cousin now brings her grandson to play with my mother and it is the grandson's goal in life to beat my mother...at something.
Recently I went with my cousin, her husband and my mother to visit my aunt in the Alzheimers facility. After the visit, we all went back to Peach & Bob's house, where they were going to "get" me. They were going to teach me a new game and laugh at how badly I played.
I'm sure it was beginners luck, but I skunked the lot of them. They got me down at my mother's house a few weeks later, determined to regain their honor. I told the story of that game here. I love that story. It's kind of like the game of Scrabble with Joan.
While I have inherited some of my mother's cutthroatedness, I'm not as cold-blooded as she is.
I convinced Jeri to play on-line Scrabble recently and found myself apologizing to her when I started beating her. I was even looking for lower point words at one point until I realized this "child" is older than I was when I gave birth to her, so I stopped cutting her some "mom-slack."
Besides, she's played games with her grandmother.
She knows about losing!
PHOTO OF THE DAY
My mother as I will always remember her!