“Guess What I Am” was my family’s favorite after-dinner game when I was a child. It’s a simplified version of Charades — family members take turns pretending to be various things, and everyone else guesses who they are. It’s great to pass on this game to my kids, although now I realize just how appealing the game was for my parents: not only does it allow the kids to beam out adorableness from every pore, but it can be played while lounging on the couch. Yes!
This, of course, lead to my mom’s infamous “Lincoln Memorial” impersonation (she sat there and did nothing) and also her interptetation of “Windshield Wipers” (she waved her arms back and forth). We teased her about her these for years — but this evening, I found myself sitting on the couch, nursing a babe under one arm while flapping the other and quacking — quite possibly the lamest impression of a duck, ever.
Here’s what you would have overheard in our game tonight:
Jeffrey: Bsssszt, bsssszt, bsssszt, bsssszt!
Me: Are you a robot?
Me: A spaceship?
Me: A bulldozer?
Me: What are you, then?
Jeffrey: [looking put out] I’m one of those Star Wars guys!
Me: Which one?
Jeffrey: You know — the one that goes “bsssszt, bsssszt, bsssszt!”
Ah. Naturally. Why on earth couldn’t I make the connection? But at least Jeffrey had a concrete thing in mind when pretending. Eleanor, on the other hand . . .
Me: Are you a tiger?
Me: A bear?
Me: Ella, what are you?
Ella: . . . I don’t know. . .
Me: Were you a lion?
Playing games with Eleanor always gives way to something that sounds like faux-Zen dialogue from a bad Kung-fu movie.
When you guess what I am, young Grasshopper, then you will be ready . . .