Wednesday, January 20, 2010


The latest "favorite game" at our house is Bananagrams. We're a little unorthodox around here, though. Those little tiles are just so addicting that we can't keep our hands off each others letters! It's common for a passing hand to reach over someone's shoulder to rearrange letters. Or for multiple suggestions to be shouted out for a player struggling with an unusual collection of letters. Laps are a vehicle to hone in on someone's letters (invited or not).

A whole sub-set of moves exists in the Brown family home. There are defensive moves like the "right-hand-up-elbow-out-shoulder-dodge-to-the-right" to block the hand reaching over the shoulder. Or the "hunch-over-elbow-guard-left-hand-shielding-the-letters-from-view." There are also offensive moves used by non-players to sneak into the game. If the objections of a player are not vociferous enough, there is the "chair-wedge" where a few letters rearranged becomes pulling up a chair which gets scrunched closer and closer to play until the original player becomes elbowed to the side. Or the "over-the-shoulder-two-hander" where hands emerge simultaneously from both sides of a player's head and steal letters from the puzzle to spell out some unusual car part. (My husband, Don, is the only one tall enough to perfect this move.)

We have cooperative moves, too. All players will neglect their own letters if someone is struggling with a bizarre combination of tiles. The youngest kids will man the dictionary during fast-paced games, checking to see if "nee" is actually a word (it is) or if "dissect" has one or two s's (two). We've been known to trade letters. We accept words from either dictionary ("qanat," a canal system used in the middle east is in one but not the other). And at the end of a game, we collectively finish all puzzles and remark on all the outstanding words. Shannon, age 10, used "dragon," "jess" (a leash for a falcon), "oxen," "zygote," and "lint" in a game yesterday!

Soooo... what does Bananagrams have to do with blogging? Don peeked over my shoulder the other day as I was setting up the blog and got very excited, "kwilting is NOT a Bananagrams word!"

Darn... I'll have to check the other dictionary!

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