The Snow Game of Fox and Geese

 

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This is a game of Fox and Geese, played by jungle animals, on holiday somewhere in Canada.  Montreal, maybe.  Or Sudbury.

The Rules:

1.  Tramp out a big wagon wheel shape in the snow.  This can be done with one person holding one end of a rope at the centre of the circle, and another person at the other end of the rope plodding through the deep snow while taking shouted instructions from the rest of the group waiting to play.  Or you can all just get out there and eyeball it until everyone agrees it could work.

2.  Using some random criteria, like who has the meanest looking face, choose a player to be the fox.  For this game, Zebra it is.

3.  The ostrich, monkey, giraffe, lion, hippo and elephant are all geese to start the game.

4.  The geese must run around and across the wagon wheel rim and spokes like mad things,  while the fox chases them.  All players must not take short cuts, but stay on the wheel at all times.  No face plants or snow angel breaks allowed if they can be avoided.

5.  The hub of the wheel is a safe zone where the geese may stop long enough to gasp for air, and then they have to get back to running around in a haphazard fashion.  Except always on the wheel.  Don’t forget that.

6.  If a goose (for example, the elephant) is tagged by the fox (in this case, the zebra), the elephant then becomes the new fox and the zebra is a goose.  Identity crises all around, accompanied by a lot of yelling to inform the other players, who may or may not hear you over the sound of their own laboured breathing.

7.  There are no winners or losers in this game, only enthusiastic participants who don’t mind looking like a bunch of shrieking maniacs cavorting and prancing around in a snow-covered field all afternoon.

The game ends when:

– the wagon wheel is trampled into oblivion

– the fox, unable to catch anyone, becomes frustrated and starts to cry (there is no crying in snow games – tears freeze)

– at least three faces or three sets of toes have turned blue, or some related colour to be determined by the group, because of exposure or frost bite

– the bar opens at the hotel (you’re on holiday, remember?)

– the lion gets hungry.  Time to go.

This bit of nonsense Is in response to

The Second Annual Contest of Whatever

at Evil Squirrels Nest

It’s not too late to submit a game related animal post for this contest;  deadline is Sunday morning.  And it’s never too late to get out in the snow and play a pointless snow game with your family and friends or some jungle animals on holiday.  Stupid snow should be good for something.

Word Brain

word brainI’m playing this word game (it’s an Apple app) because I like word games and because I want to keep my brain functioning.  I’m not sure if this is helping, or just adding to the general confusion.  The game starts off being really simple and easy (to get you hooked) and becomes more challenging as you progress.  All you have to do is find words by running your finger over the letters in the right order.  The above picture doesn’t make sense to me, because where is the word music in that block of letter blocks?  More puzzling than that, how in the world did this player get two hundred and fifty hints??  It must be a level way beyond the one I’m on.  And either this person is a genius who never uses hints, or there is some magic way to cheat to get them.  I’m going to google that later.

The puzzles I am solving now consist of two words.  If you don’t guess them in the right order, the second one could have its letters drop down too scrambled to solve.  So you have to hit the circling arrows and start again.  When I got to the two-word puzzles it took me – oh, I don’t know, maybe 6 or 10 puzzles – to figure out that the solutions are not words that go together to mean something.  You know, like ‘chair back’, ‘barn yard’ and ‘rock band’.

Here are some of the best ones I found which I think we should add to the English language as two-word phrases.  Just because.  They conjure up the best images.

1.  lemon face (give a baby something sour to see a really great one)

2.  fish shout (hey guys, boat bottom overhead!  go deep!)

3.  egg tennis (hardest serves to return ever)

4.  book elbow (you read way too much)

5.  snail skis (not the best choice for downhill racing)

6.  sock petal (this flower smells weird)

7.  melon well (fetch a pail of honey dews)

8.  sun waffle (for breakfast – moon waffles are for midnight snacks)

9.  skull tent (not proven to be a bear deterrent)

10.  spinach tv (the only reason you have it is because it’s part of a package)

This game really should give these kinds of hints, instead of merely showing you the first letter of one of the words.  If they did that, I would have gotten at lot more of them right, a lot faster.  If anyone from Apple would like to contact me for other advice about their apps, I’m not that busy.

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December It Is

Well look at me. I was going to take a well-earned day off from posting, but then I remembered that every day is a day off for me and do I really need to spend any of these days doing ABSOLUTELY nothing? Or could I just put that off until tomorrow or some other day.

And then as I was wasting time on Facebook looking at pages that I’ve liked in the past but which never ever come up on my news feed, I came across the following interesting thought-provoking stuff.

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Plus W mixed me a spiced rum and orange juice.  So I’m not completely responsible.

Back to the drawing board tomorrow.

Balls

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Last night W wandered into the living room and asked me what I was drawing.

I said balls.

Looking at my sketch book page, he said what is that, an orange, or a peach or what?

I said, it’s just a ball.

He laughed.

I thought, are balls funny?

These particular balls, not amusing to me no matter how hard I look at them, are simply my experiment in colour blending and shading using pencil crayons.  They ended up looking like unfunny balls.  Mission accomplished.

However, after that, the very idea of balls kept me awake last night.  I imagined teaching everything about balls to people learning the English language. This could be funny for the teacher, but probably much less funny for the students.

Consider this comprehensive list, and then you decide how many ball lessons might be required to master all the concepts.

1.  She entered the ballroom wearing her ball gown to dance at the gala ball.  Everyone could see she was having a ball.

2.  At the ball game in the ball park, the pitcher often throws more strikes than balls.  There are fair balls and foul balls and the umpire must have the balls to stand by his various calls.

3.  What do the words tennis, golf, cannon, meat, ping-pong and basket all have in common?  Bingo.  They are all balls.  There are also bingo balls.

4.  He crumpled the paper into a ball.

5.  A football is not the same thing as the ball of your foot, both of which are larger than the ball of your thumb.

6.  The accountants found his financial records to be all balled up.

7.  Yarn and candy and cotton can all be balls.

8.  If you think something is bull shit nonsense, it’s more polite to call it bolus or balls.

9.  You can carry the ball, run with the ball, drop the ball, start the ball rolling,  keep the ball rolling, and just generally be on the ball.

10.  Does a snowman, made of balls of snow, have snowballs?

It’s enough to make a bald man bawl.

Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends.  May there be sufficient left overs for turkey balls tomorrow.

And just to remind you that balls can be hilarious, here’s a classic to start off the holiday coming up next.

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Just Some Unpowerful Stuff

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Ten Words to Cut From Your Writing is an article written by Shanna Mallon which I read on entrepreneur.com.  My life may never be the same.

Here are the offensive little beggars. You might want to jot them down one last time.

- just, really, very, perhaps, maybe, quite, a bit, completely, almost, amazing, literally, stuff, things and got.

The list is longer than ten because some of the words are redundant and grouped together.  Read the article and I promise it will all come clear.   Using them, and words like them, makes your writing weak.  Avoiding them makes your writing tight and powerful and strong.

My first thought was, oh really?  Got?  But I can describe my entire day using the word ‘got’.  Have you got a minute?  I got up, got dressed, got breakfast, got in my car, got to work, got bored, got through it, got home, got hungry, got tired, got to sleep by ten.  Do you suppose she’s got a point?

My second thought was perhaps that’s maybe a bit harsh, though.  Or you might even say almost completely upsetting and discouraging.   I mean that literally.   Especially for those of us who’ve got things to say that are just quite amazing.   You know the kind of stuff I mean.  Very good stuff.  Quite amazing really maybe very good things.

Huh.

My third thought (I know, amazing, three thoughts in one day) was that if I cut out all those words from this blog (or just this post)  half of my written work would disappear.  I’m not saying that’s a bad thing,  nevertheless I would not like to see that happen.  Because it was quite a bit of work.  And then I realized I use the word ‘that’ too much as well.

So I won’t do that.

Honestly I really don’t feel like taking this advice to heart even though I suspect it’s good and amazing stuff.  I believe powerful and strong is for cleaning products and body builders and electrical storms.  And of course strong and serious people with something brilliant to say.  I’m rarely serious.  So I’m excusing myself from paying attention to this list.

Although perhaps not completely.  I will maybe try really very hard to cut down on the use of these offensive little words.  Quite likely tomorrow.  Or one of these amazing days.

Coffee First

No matter what my plans (or lack thereof) are for any given day, I am basically a creature of habit.   My day starts with this lovely thought.
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And second, more coffee.  And guess what comes next?  Gargantuan coffee number three.  Well that’s how it went today, anyway.

That’s probably quite enough coffee for one day.  I’m just not my usual laid back  lazy self tonight.  Instead I think I might describe myself as zingy.  Zippy?  Zonked will come later.

I always make coffee in the morning and drink at least one over sized cup before work.  Then I get a large black coffee from McDonalds for the morning.  Then when a co-worker shows up and asks me if I’d like a coffee, I rarely say no.  That would be rude.  We don’t fool around with wimpy little cups either – these are the super sized jumbo heart palpitation  inducing servings guaranteed to make it pretty much impossible for your eyes to close.

By five o’clock today I was still wide awake and buzzed and not thinking clearly, which helps to explain why I bought a gluten-free pizza crust mix and some yeast and enough pepperoni to pave my driveway.

Yes, I made pizza!  On this no bread no wheat no gluten and not even a measly cracker food plan I made up for myself, the one thing I’ve really been missing is pizza.  W was skeptical because he fears everything gluten-less, but the crust was okay!  It was a lot like biscuit dough, but crunchy.  Really, if you put enough tomato sauce and pepperoni and melted cheese on  something it’s pretty hard for it to taste bad.  I also threw on some bits of onion and green pepper.  Because vegetables.

Do you hate it when somebody says because followed by one word?  Do you get why that’s so popular when it’s rarely a proper explanation for anything?

And while you’re answering that could you also please explain to me why I’m drinking another cup of coffee as we speak?  Don’t worry, this one is decaf.   Because GAWD.

Maybe I should have some wine to help me sleep……  There’s no gluten in wine.  But first……