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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I Spy

One of our favourite don't-let-him-fall-asleep-in-the-car games to play these days is I Spy. If you're not familiar with the game, well you probably aren't reading my parenthood-inspired ramblings in the first place, but I'll cover the basics anyway. The spy gives clues as to what s/he sees and the guesser, you guessed it, guesses what the spy is seeing. The spy must use the phrase "I spy with my little eye," but I have no clue as to why this is. It's tradition - we'll go with that.

Spyer: "I spy with my little eye something that is.........(long pause for effect)....... green."
Guesser: "That road sign there," or "That car beside us," or "This stuff coming out of my nose." (Have I mentioned boys are sometimes gross? Oh, yes I have. See Everyone Should Grow Up and Have a Boy.)
You get the idea.

Adapted rules for our particular family's needs and preferences are as follows:
1. Mom and dad are always the spies, and Jack is always the guesser.
2. If one clue is not enough, just keep throwing them out there until the guesser guesses correctly, or prepare to be accused of offering "a bad spy." Even then there's no guarantee.

Our son is still in a car seat, and these days bundled in a hooded jacket, so his peripheral vision is not stellar. Anything we spy while driving will soon be out of view to him. There is a very limited amount of time in which to guess what we see.

Thus our en route I Spy rounds go something like this:

Spy (e.g. mommy): I spy with my little eye.................... something that is red................. and rectangular shaped.............. and high above the road........... with a picture of an Eagle and some words on it........ and it's coming up on your right... (running out of time) and it’s a sign.
Guesser (Jack): It’s that sign, mommy!!
Mommy: YES!!! Good guess, Jack!
Jack: That took a long time to guess. That wasn't a very good spy mommy. Try another one.

And so it goes. Mom and dad continue spying different things - not an easy task in a grey and white winter landscape - and Jack evaluates us based on some set of factors known only to him. It's good fun... for a while.... until we wish we had just let him sleep. 

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