For about an hour this afternoon, three generations of women played a spirited game of a new version of scrabble -- the literary one, a Christmas present that we are learning to play. We were three generation, me, my daughter, her daughter and the fourth generation was very much present in the form of a 22 month old who needed attention and his 2 month old baby brother contentedly being fed a bottle by his grandmother and burped by his mother. For the first time ever in a long series of weekly scrabble games I and my granddaughter tied.
We live within two miles of one another. Our competitive temperaments are somewhat different. I have never been a serious game player [except for crossword puzzles where I am the only player]-- so much so that in college when my roommate and two of our boy friends learned to play bridge, they gave up inviting me to play because I just didn't care enough about winning to keep other people's hands in mind. My daughter is marginally more competitive and granddaughter can be very competitive. But we have a give and take when playing, especially this new version in which knowing names of books and authors gives extra points. I've read far more than either but they have read kinds of books I have not so we give each other clues -- which is the same as giving extra points.
In short we spend a structured hour together, catch up a little -- there's not that much catching up to do, of course, and have a sense of togetherness that we know is very, very rare in a society where families seem to be more often widely scattered than living close together. It wasn't always thus for us, of course. I've only lived near-by for three years. We're a lucky family.
ELDER MUSIC: Songs About Cities - Memphis - This Sunday Elder Music column was launched in December of 2008. By May of the following year, one commenter, Peter Tibbles, had added so much knowledge an...
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