This is the third
day in a row of rain on our relax-in-the-sun, Jamaica vacation. Dad agrees to play Risk to take his mind off the fact that he paid extra to get a room with six hundred square feet of deck.


After two hours of intense play, and eight slices of banana cream pie from room service, the world is divided: Marc has Australia, Mom has North America, Dad has South America and I have Africa.

It's Dad's turn, and he wants to attack North Africa from Brazil. I start to cry. I try not to, but it's taken me two hours to get a continent.

Dad says, "Oh Christ. This is why I hate this game."

"I just got a continent," I say.

"Look," Dad says, "Someone has to conquer everyone else. Someone has to win the game."

"But why North Africa? Why don't you take Mexico? Mom's got more armies than I do."

"Because that's not my plan," Dad says.

"It's not fair," I say, "Look at Marc. He's got all of Australia, and no one's bothering him."

"He's too far away," Dad says. "And besides, I've got you on one side of me and Mom on the other. I have to attack one of you, or I won't get a card at the end of my turn. It's just how the game goes."

I cry. Dad has twenty eight armies on Brazil, and I have three armies on North Africa.

"I don't want to play," I tell them.

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