The Tree Game is the high point of our Family Christmas Gathering (maybe a tie with my son’s magic act he performed after dinner). You see, my family does not exchange Christmas gifts, but we all agree to take the chance of winning big (or not at all) playing The Christmas Tree Game. This game of dumb luck can send you away with only a zonker gift like bread pudding, or loads of gift cards, cash and fine champagne. Because a couple of the ornament spots on the Tree board tell all the players to leave their loot behind and move seats to the left or right, the game really is not over until it’s over. High suspense!
All players show up with a minimum of four wrapped gifts ... so there is a huge pile of loot at game start. This year, all were required to bring something made in America, along with a white elephant gift, plus two other wrapped items that could be cash, gift card, or actual presents … all totaling one hundred buckaroos. "Pity the Fool," (As Mr. T would say) that gets stuck with the camping shower. This is the White Elephant “Piece De Resistance” that has been regifted for five years. I found it a tricky task to buy a gift made in America that, old and young, man or woman could use. After scratching my chinny-chin-chin for days, I bought a sixteen-roll pack of toilet paper and camouflaged it festively with green wrapping paper and a gold bow. Other All-American gifts were a Spiffypress.com mouse pad, Hollywood keychain, a CD of the song “Made In America,” a brick, and a metal bank hand crafted by Simcro Precision, Inc.
In this home-spun game (which is in it’s third edition) you roll the dice and your pawn jumps from ornament to ornament on the Tree board. Players are instructed to sing carols, answer Christmas trivia, pick a gift, steal a gift, swap a gift, change seats or pay a “Starbuck,” and wear the silly elf hat. At the end of the game, whoever is wearing the elf hat wins all the Starbucks that add up to a nice cash prize. The biggest loser of the night wins The Mystery Gift. Consider this a consolation prize, that this year doubled as a boobie prize, because part of the Mystery Gift was a zebra-fur-hot water bottle. Really. It would have been a real zonker, except for the lottery tickets tucked inside.
|Christmas Eve! Yes, Daniel has a blue beard... long story!|
Well, Roger That, Houston, this the final chapter on our Christmas Holiday Happenings for 2011. We are a week into 2012 and it’s time to move forward and onward, to reach the top, we’re working for a victory that can’t be stopped! Ooopps, my inner cheerleader slipped out. I guess you can say that I am excited about keeping good balance and seeking new adventures in this brand-spankin-new year!