I think I’ve mentioned that countries have replaced planets (mostly, for now) as Benji’s area of interest. This is slightly more interesting to us, too, because after three years of planets we had started scraping be l the bottom of the barrel as far as planet books for kids go. There are lots, it’s true, but we also read lots.

Anyway, we’re on to countries of the world! Benji has spent hours poring over our old have of Take-Off, which hails from my childhood, and consequently he’s learned Europe with West Germany and Yugoslavia, etc. He invents different games about countries, like having one in each continent marked that we have to guess.

Well, last night he came up with a new game: the geopolitics/disputed border game. In this game, he and Ian are two countries that are fighting about a border. They want things like access to imaginary rivers or to the real stairs. I’m the UN, and I come in and offer various possible compromises until I come up with one they both agree on. Borders are represented with pillows laid on the floor.

It’s a decently fun game, even for adults, but we had a hard time not laughing at the fact that we were playing it at all. What kid plays geopolitics and diplomacy?! … But it’s much better than some of the fairly boring planet games, so I’ll take it.

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