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Question of the Month: Dice

by Susan Henderson on March 3, 2008

What’s your favorite game involving dice? And if you have a story to share about you and that game, let me hear it.

*

Wednesday, Daisuke Tsutsumi will be here. He’s a fabulous illustrator who goes by the nickname of “Dice.” I hope you’ll be back to see his art and join the conversation.

{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

terrybain March 3, 2008 at 4:38 pm

Okay. Disqus is back. So comment away. And keep your fingers crossed that we stay up. I’m pretty sure we will… but crossed fingers couldn’t hurt, could they?

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terrybain March 3, 2008 at 4:52 pm

Oh, and by the way, I’m tempted to answer today’s question, after having spent most of the morning trying to get litpark back online, by saying that trusting your data to the internet is the biggest dice game of all, but instead I’ll say that when I was a kid we used to play 10,000 (commercially called Farkle, apparently), and that was fun, but I’m not sure we called it either of those names. But I haven’t really played any sort of dice games in years. Except maybe Yahtzee.

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terrybain March 3, 2008 at 5:06 pm

Also by the way, if you posted a comment here before disqus was back up, it might have disappeared. If you need help reposting it, let me know and I’ll give you a hand. here

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Kimberly March 3, 2008 at 5:50 pm

No dice.

(Stories, that is)

Crap.

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jessicaK March 3, 2008 at 5:59 pm

A world without Litpark??
That’s a dicey thought.
Didn’t want to contemplate it. Glad you’re back.

Jessica Keener

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Erin March 3, 2008 at 6:25 pm

RISK. I beat my sister and her husband at that game when I was 11-years-old. They never saw me coming. I’ve probably lost every game of RISK since, but I still feel like I’m a lucky roller.

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Lee March 3, 2008 at 6:43 pm

I used to play some game with these tiny little figurine pigs that were somehow supposed to represent dice, but I don’t remember what it was called.
I do remember some kid from Brooklyn who wore glasses and yelled, “That man was me!”
And I remember never having as much, if any, beer at the end of the game as we did the beginning.
I’m pretty sure that was my favorite game— whatever it was.

~Lee

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Aurelio March 3, 2008 at 7:26 pm

Parcheesi uses dice, doesn’t it? I don’t remember. I liked Parcheesi, but preferred The Game of Life, which I recall has a noisy spinner. I liked to collect as many children as I could in my little car and cash them in for money at the end. Whoever wrote the game was pretty cynical about parenting.

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robinslick March 3, 2008 at 8:30 pm

Actually, Kim, you took my answer.

Crap.

Shooting them, that is.

Oh, I’m lying. I never shot craps in my life. I don’t even know what it is, only that it involves dice and it’s a gamble-in-a-casino or on the street corner when the police are looking the other way type game. It just sounded cool and I wanted to say I did it.

But I do play Boggle. And Perquackey. Technically both use dice, except with letters instead of numbers.

What a geek. I should have just stuck with saying I shot craps. Whatever. The main thing is, I went to the above mentioned Dice’s website and it is AMAZING. What a treat!

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DarylDarko March 3, 2008 at 9:05 pm

Yahtzee is what I have played the most, although I used to really enjoy Trouble, with that cool popping plastic dome. It was very cool. I’ve been invited twice to play Dungeons & Dragons, but I chickened out both times. Have never shot craps. Ive never even been inside a casino (or an alley).

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Dennis Mahagin March 3, 2008 at 5:45 pm

I gotta go with the game of craps. I’m talking about Casino Craps, not that back-alley cash n’ carry type of craps.

Standing at a hot craps table in, let’s say, the MGM on Tropicana and LV Blvd, is an excellent “people watching” exercise. Great for a writer. There are definitely some insights into the human condition, which might be gleaned in such a milieu! True dat.

Once, I was at a craps table (this was in the old Desert Inn, on the strip…long, long since torn down) and anyway Bruce Willis was at this craps table, too. He kept making all these complicated proposition bets before every roll, some weird wagers that I had never even heard of before, and I thought I knew the game of craps! I mean, Bruce would spend at least five minutes getting all his crazy bets down, and it was clear that one of the croupiers was getting a little perturbed by his showboat action.

But what could he do? It’s Bruce Willis, right?

I just kept my money on the pass line, and there was this one good looking lady shooter who was on an incredible roll, so I made out pretty good.Probably cleared at least a couple grand. At one point, old Bruce saw my rising stack of chips, and gave me a little thumbs up.

Cheap thrills, people!

Anyway, after about a half hour, Bruce and his handlers headed out of there, and so I asked the main stick boss, the one who’d gotten pissed off, before–how Willis made out.

“He musta dropped at least a hundred grand,” the croupier said.

“Really?” I said, “he seemed all happy to me.”

The croupier shrugged:

“The money ain’t nothing to him, but I think he really digs the attention.”

“The adoration, you mean,” I said.

“Whatever,” said the stick man. “Freaking big shots, they’re a pain in the ass.”

Then, after I talked to the guy for a few more minutes, I went across the casino and blew all my craps winnings, and then some, at a nickel minimum blackjack table. There weren’t any celebrities at that table, and I received no adoration whatsoever, from anyone.

;)–D

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Terry March 3, 2008 at 5:55 pm

Oh, and by the way, I’m tempted to answer today’s question, after having spent most of the morning trying to get litpark back online, by saying that trusting your data to the internet is the biggest dice game of all, but instead I’ll say that when I was a kid we used to play 10,000 (commercially called Farkle, apparently), and that was fun, but I’m not sure we called it either of those names. But I haven’t really played any sort of dice games in years. Except maybe Yahtzee.

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lance_reynald March 3, 2008 at 11:18 pm

I lack patience for dice games…
always someones else getting their turn…
then the counting each point out…

I’m more the free spin kinda fella…

a monopoly tycoon…

cruising the board as a scotty dog or a tophop when dice are involved…

but spin a bottle or bust out twister…

that’s all about some good clean fun.

unless you’re drinking… then we’re gonna have to play truth or dare…

truths easy on the writers, dares just get ya into trouble.

( wondertwin… sofa full of pillows coming at ya!)

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Nathalie March 4, 2008 at 1:45 am

Probably Monopoly. That’s the only game I played as a kid outside of Scrabble.

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Nathalie March 4, 2008 at 1:47 am

Commenting with crossed fingers isn’t that easy…
Happy to see the site back up though.

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 6:59 am

Your kids are a good age for Yahtzee. You should see if they like it.

Thank you for rescuing the site!

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 6:59 am

Look what you started.

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 7:00 am

I’m relieved! Thanks for your help!

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 7:03 am

RISK is probably my favorite game. I always go to the death fighting for Ural. That ensures that one of my kids will win the game.

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 7:03 am

I want to know what game this is!

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 7:05 am

Just reading about all these board games reminds me I have a comment to make back to Lance.

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 7:06 am

I’m excited to have Dice here. I’m glad you took a sneak peek.

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 7:07 am

I’m just remembering how much I actually like Yahtzee.

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 7:10 am

And see, this is why you are the wondertwin because I could have written this same answer. Except for the Monopoly part. With most games, I just feel like my life is ticking away – wondering which is worse, waiting for my turn or taking my turn. I never care about winning or collecting money. The only joy I get in playing games with my kids is to make some big bluster about wanting to win and then strategically blow the game so there’s a big comedy at the end. But when I was a kid, I was famous for swiping my arm over the board mid-game just to end it and to begin some more interesting drama.

Truth or Dare: yes!

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SusanHenderson March 4, 2008 at 7:11 am

Perhaps we are all too cool for games?

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Nathalie March 4, 2008 at 7:21 am

Not as far as I am concerned. It’s just an educational flaw. We did not play much when I was a kid. Scrabble, yes and the odd monopoly. Most of my friends played card games at home.
I am clueless. I did some role playing games when at university and that involved some dice as I recall.

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Ric March 4, 2008 at 8:13 am

the 10,000 dice game with 6 dice – our scoring is a bit different but around the kitchen table, it all works. Yahtzee – both single and triple – even printed up some score sheets once (being a printer helps)

My wife can still holler FAMILY TIME – even though the kids are well into their twenties. And the smiles, and enjoyment at being family, come right back. Most of our holiday gatherings end up in the kitchen with the sound of dice clicking on the oak table.

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Betsy March 4, 2008 at 9:06 am

I can’t think of a particular incident, but I will say that as much as I love games now, dice or no dice, when I was a kid just about any game had the potential to end with me storming off to my room in a fit.

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DarylDarko March 4, 2008 at 10:27 am

ah but you see “the game” IS life. so you are one of those bratty kids that were “notorious”, not famous (fame contributes a sense of being beloved) for ruining our enterprise establishing opportunities of being champion game players by “childishly” overturning game boards. you don’t still do that, do you? i can see it being a good memory for a short scene in bio-pic but there must have been great heartache attached to such real life scenes, no?

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Kimberly March 4, 2008 at 10:59 am

🙂

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Greg_Boose March 4, 2008 at 11:28 am

Gotta be Risk, the game of world domination.

I must be a nerd as I play games about every couple of weeks. The most popular in my circle of friends and in my family is dominoes (and not the type that you line up and knock down).

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Greg_Boose March 4, 2008 at 11:31 am

Oh, and Clue is pretty damn sweet.

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Carolyn_Burns_Bass March 4, 2008 at 11:36 am

I would like to cash my kids in right about now. They’re both in college and costing quite a lot these days.

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Carolyn_Burns_Bass March 4, 2008 at 11:37 am

Yes, Jess. Monday’s are just not the same without a romp in the Park.

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Gail Siegel March 4, 2008 at 11:43 am

We use those special 10-sided dice to pick precincts for random audits after the elections! I’ve never been much for board games except for backgammon–as a dating ritual with my husband. Later in life, I remember playing everything from Yahtzee to Candyland and elaborate card games with my kids. I’d always be saying “You take my turn while I clear the dishes.”

But give me a set of jacks…

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Carolyn_Burns_Bass March 4, 2008 at 11:47 am

The sound of a rattling Yahtzee cup is comfort food for my soul. Yahtzee was as much a part of my childhood as chicken soup and apple pie. My grandmother was the Yahtzee Queen, who could talk the dice into giving whatever she wanted. So rich is the Yahtzee inheritance, that once I found in an antique store a pristine classic Yahtzee game, with all of the little chips, score pad, and perfectly pointed little pencils. I had to have it. It’s displayed above the game cabinet in our family room as an artifact to my childhood.

As my recently-completed novel draws from my childhood memories, Yahtzee most definitely has a role (pun intended).

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Erin March 4, 2008 at 12:02 pm

It’s called Pig Mania (the version we played). Now you can find it as Pass the Pigs or something like that. You get a different amount of points depending on the position the pigs land – I think the “double snouter” was the highest of honors.
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/image/252697

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Lee March 4, 2008 at 3:59 pm

That’s it!!!
Thanks Erin!
When I wrote that I hadn’t thought of that game in years and for some reason I didn’t think it likely that I’d ever know the name of it.
The games I play now are much different and don’t involve so much alcohol.
I checked your link and “Pass the Pigs” looks just like what we played.
Awesome . . .

~Lee

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dennis mahagin March 5, 2008 at 3:47 am

I gotta go with craps.

I mean Casino Craps, not that back-alley cash n’ carry kind of craps. Standing at a crowded Vegas craps table is actually a very good “people watching” exercise. Excellent
for a writer. There are definitely some insights into the human condition that might be gleaned from such a milieu!

Once I was at a craps table in the old Desert Inn casino (long since torn down) and Bruce Willis was gambling at this table. He kept making these complicated proposition bets before every roll–some very “off the wall angles”–some of which I’d never even heard of before, and I thought I knew the game of craps! I mean, Bruce was seriously holding up the game with his weird wagers, and there was this one croupier who was getting just a wee bit bent out of shape by it all. But what could he do, right? It was Bruce Willis!

For my part, I kept betting the pass line; there was this good- looking lady shooter who was on a tremendous hot streak, and I got behind her action, big time. I was up at least a couple grand, in a hurry. At one point, Bruce Willis glanced at my rapidly-rising stack of chips, and gave me a little thumbs up, plus a wink. Cheap thrills, people!

So anyway, a little while later, Willis and his entourage packed up, and got out of there. I started talking to the croupier, who’d shown his irritation with the movie star, earlier. I asked him how Bruce Willis made out.

“He probably dropped at least a hundred grand,” this croupier told me.

“Really?” I said, “He looked all happy to me.”

“The money don’t mean shit to him,” said the croupier, “but I think he really gets off on the attention.”

“You mean the adoration?” I said.

“Whatever,” the stick man concluded. “Freaking big shots, man. Nothing but a pain in the ass.”

I talked to the guy for a few more minutes, and then strolled over to the other side of the casino–where I proceeded to blow all my craps winnings, and then some, at a nickel minimum blackjack table. There were no celebrities at this table, and I received very little adoration, from anyone.

;)-D

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SusanHenderson March 6, 2008 at 11:02 pm

I’ve been enjoying your comments – and Gail, I love the story about the D&D dice used at the elections. I’m not going to be back until April. My post tonight will explain. Take good care, everyone.

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dadshouse March 20, 2008 at 12:24 am

Liar’s Dice. I have a buddy who can’t lost. One time in the BVI (while drinking Dark and Stormies) we got him down to one dice. Damned if he didn’t use every trick in the book to push us into a corner where we had to bluff. Somehow he won.

Liar’s Dice is a great way to meet women in a pub. (As a single dad, and therefore a single man, meeting women in a pub, or anywhere, is a very good thing)

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Susan Henderson May 6, 2008 at 2:11 pm

Hey, t, how come all the Disqus comments disappeared on this post? There were 50 or so, and for some reason this reverted to the old commenting method.

???

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