One of the games I remember most from my childhood was the game of Monopoly. It was a real estate game, which doesn’t sound cool at all when described that way, but it was actually tons of fun. You could buy and sell property with colorful stacks of funny money and become “rich” in a completely fantasy sort of way. At the start of the game, though, came perhaps the most important decision and strategy of all. You first had to select or fight over which of the eight little tokens would become your persona for next few hours. The pieces have changed over the years and some of the original choices have been retired. The original concept was provided by the inventor’s niece who suggested using charms from a girl’s bracelet as playing pieces. This would become the entire brilliance of the game and what’s made it so iconic to this day. That said, if you were one to choose the iron, thimble or wheelbarrow, for instance, you’d be out of luck in the modern version. But for this little quiz, it’s time to be like a kid again, so please share whatever token you enjoyed most in the comments below!
For me, I was definitely partial to the top hat, but my love of animals meant that I was mostly a sucker for the Scottie dog. Both of these pieces managed to survive the various updates to the game, so I was thankful for that, at least. I think a Scottie dog in a top hat would have been the best token of all. You can now get a rubber duck, dinosaur, cat and penguin as options, which didn’t exist at all when I was young. The cat actually beat out a little robot contender that I thought should have won. I would have totally chosen that one. These little tokens were such wonderful memories. Kudos to the uncredited inventor’s niece for suggesting them. The game was fun, but super long, so all you had to keep you company, if you weren’t in the process of winning stacks of money was that little silver token (now gold in some cases… they changed that bit too). Even if I wasn’t winning, having that little charm was still like getting a little gift of something. A shiny little object that felt valuable in some way.
These days, I have a Monopoly set sitting in a little wooden box that I haven’t played in years. In many ways, I think my attention span has grown even shorter than when I was a kid. The idea of breaking out the game and going through round after round is a bit daunting to me. But it was super fun and I really enjoyed it. Perhaps that’s why at the age of 18, I got my real estate license. This was yet another blip in my life’s adventure while I was attending art school and working as an assistant to a top local realtor. I was mostly helping with marketing and designing ads, but had to also help with the daily grind as well. When I was told I couldn’t show a home without a license I demanded that I must get one. A couple weeks later, after taking some classes, I took a big fat test and managed to procure one. I let it lapse a few years later and no longer have it. Without shiny tokens to amuse me, I quickly grew tired of it and moved on to other things. The tokens, after all, where everything. So, my dear friends, what monopoly token are you?
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Da Vinci Paint Co.: Terra Cotta and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!