Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Is there a 'P'?

_ _ _ _

I ask, "Is there an 'A'?"

Without a word she drew the circle.

"Is there a 'B'?"

The circle gained an ear.

"How about a 'P'?"

In the first blank, she wrote 'P'. I knew at once that the other three letters were 'ONY'. Well, I knew when we started playing that the word was "PONY". Every day while we sat in the car waiting to pick James up from preschool, Stacey and I play Hangman. Every day she chose the same word. I changed my strategy from day to day just to keep her interest. Once in awhile, I actually completed the man dangling at the end of a rope.

A few years ago I was looking for a game for my daughter and family. I came across the game that my mother had taught me to play when I was a little girl sitting in church, the boxed edition of Hangman. In picking up the box, I was surprised at the repulsion I felt holding a game in which an imaginary person was hanged.

I decided to find out just how far back the game could be traced. It seems that it dates back to the Victorian age in England being first mentioned in a work by Alice Gomme titled Birds, Beasts and Fishes. The year was 1894. This game reflecting another era is still played today.

"Grammy, can we play Hangman?" my granddaughter asks as we sit in the car waiting for her sister to get off the school bus.

"Sure we can," I answer.

No longer do the figures consist of just circles and sticks. No, now they have hair, clothing and anything we can think of to keep the spelling game going.

"Gabby, what kind of person are you drawing?" I asked looking at the strange person on the gallows.

"It's an elf, Grammy,"  she replied. Hm. I wonder if we missed something at Christmas? Hm.

No comments:

Post a Comment