I played Sue and Graham yesterday, and utterly clobbered them. I couldn’t help myself. I’m incapable of “taking it easy” when it comes to that game. They teamed up so we could introduce Graham to the game, but he lost interest after about ten minutes.
He’s six. The game says “age 10 and up”. So it makes sense that he instead ended up arranging Sue’s quickly decimated soldiers in a “G” on the table. He was in over his head, and bored. Though I’m sure many an eight-year-old could handle this game. Why is it “10 and up”?
Who determines the age range for these things, anyway?! I’m gonna write my congresswoman, or the Consumer Product Safety Commission, or … well, …somebody! If Gov. Blagojevich of Illinois can get all in a huff about Grand Theft Auto’s negative effect on kids, then I can get in a huff about letting my child legally play Stratego before he turns ten… at which point the real U.S. Army recruiters will be knocking on our door, psyching Graham up with free copies of American Heroes 6 for PS4, their insidious propaganda tool, created to prep him for the coming war with Iran. How’s a simple board game — with its field marshals (huh?), generals, colonels, miners and a weak-ass spy (who can barely kill anybody) going to compete for a ten-year-old’s attention with such high-tech games around?
Speaking of video games, that’s really why I had to celebrate my Stratego victory over Sue. Because she generally splatters me all over the field on Madden NFL for Playstation 2, and generally beats the pants off me at every other game – both electronic and board-related. (I promised her I would fess up about this, if I blogged about Stratego. Now let’s never talk about it again. Please? I’m feeling very vulnerable right now.)
I have many fond memories of playing Stratego against my sister Laura when we were kids. Those of you who know her will vouch for her being a tough cookie. So my battle skills at Stratego were hardened by all those games… years of grueling training, stoked by the fires of intense sibling rivalry.
Most importantly, though, I’ve finally found a battle I can win against my wife. I can die happy. (Though hopefully not by being blown up while capturing a flag, or run over by a thug stealing a car, or electrocuted by some CIA trojan horse, inserted into a videogame and specially-targeted to take out whiny, liberal peaceniks.)