Monday, 30 April 2018

Luck Be A Lady Tonight

And so to the theatre. I have been to see 'Guys and Dolls'. It turned out to be one of those shows/films that I would have sworn blind that I had seen before, but the watching of which made clear that I hadn't. It is, as you probably already knew, based on Damon Runyon's short stories of the inter-war New York demi-monde, and as such I was rather surprised by the uncanny resemblance to certain wargamers of my acquaintance.

It wasn't so much the unlikely names of the characters: such as Nicely-Nicely Johnson, the Seldom Seen Kid or Harry the Horse, although one of my first wargaming opponents was, and is, always known as Len the Ink (*). It was more to do with the rolling of dice. The programme contained an explanation of the rules of craps which left me none the wiser except to appreciate that it is clearly more possible to roll the wrong number than it is the right one; if that's not a pithy description of wargaming then I don't know what is. But in particular there was the solution to that problem employed by Big Jule, the Chicago mobster: he has the spots removed from a set of dice, but before it is done he memorises which side was which number so when they are rolled he can tell the other players what the blank faces currently uppermost would have been displaying. Tell me that you don't know a wargamer like that.

Anyway, here's Marlon Brando annoying Frank Sinatra both in and out of character:

* Also several decades ago I shared a house with the Teddy Bear Kid, but that's a digression for another day.

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