Sunday, December 27, 2009

Mexican Train

I love the holidays because old friends come back into town and friends who live close by have more free time than usual and extra incentive to do fun stuff because of the unusual out-of-town guests! Nothing but parties and good food for weeks on end, very nice.

Tonight was one of those - homemade individual pizza pies and silly movies (The Princess Bride and Elf) and then a game that's new to me! And lots of fun!

It's called Mexican Train and it rocks! And . . . no . . . I don't know why it's called Mexican Train. We pondered the name while playing. We are not sure it is PC. We think it makes innocent game-playing statements sound kind of racist. We think this is funny, because my friends are generally not the sort of people who make racist comments. Does anyone out there know why the game is called Mexican Train? People need to know. Our best guess is that it was created way back when by someone in Mexico, and whoever they are, they rock, because it is awesome.

Basically, it's a dominoes game. The domino tiles go up to a double-twelve and down to a double-blank. There's a round for each of the doubles; first placing the double-twelve and playing off of it, next round off the double-eleven, etc. You can play with two players (apparently, but I think it's more fun with at least four people, and best the way we played, with teams of two). In addition to playing off your own line, matching like to like, you can start "Mexican Trains" off the in-between spaces and anyone can play off those. There are details of how to close other railroad lines down and what to do with doubles etc. but you can learn those if/when you play.

The fun part is having a buddy to discuss strategy with - you can arrange linking railroad lines of domino to domino and consider various moves several plays out. Very social, simple enough rules but involves strategy and luck - good game! I recommend checking it out, especially because it really can accommodate up to eight players. That's unusual in board or card games and nice around the holidays.

Tip: We're pretty sure points are counted against you (like in golf) and not for you, as we played. Hmm, maybe we should have read the instructions . . .

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