The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

February 7, 2013

Mike Pound: New Monopoly token doesn’t please everyone

Shilo was upset.

For the most part, Shilo, our German shepherd, is pretty laid back. Sure, if someone rings our doorbell she might get a little loud, and she does like to chase the occasional rabbit or squirrel, but, like I said, for the most part she’s laid back.

But the news that came out Wednesday hit Shilo hard.

“A cat,” she said. “I can’t believe they picked a cat.”

“It could be worse,” I said, trying to cheer her up. “They could have picked a squirrel.”

“That at least would have made sense,” Shilo said. “If you had the dog, you could pretend to chase the squirrel, and if you had the squirrel, you could pretend to run away from the dog.”

Shilo had spent time mulling over the news that the folks at Hasbro Gaming, which produces the board game Monopoly, are replacing the iron token with a cat.

The Hasbro folks asked people to vote online for their favorite tokens. The iron lost, garnering only 8 percent of the vote. Oddly enough, Mitt Romney received 10 percent of the vote. Ha!

Shilo said she understood Hasbro opting to get rid of the iron.

“When was the last time you heard anyone say, ‘Ooh, I want to be the iron’?” Shilo asked.

Shilo had a point. In the world of Monopoly, the iron was what you got when everyone else who picked before you got a chance.

“I’d take the thimble before I’d take the iron,” Shilo said.

As you can imagine, Peanut Butter, one of our cats, had a different take on the news.

“I think it’s purrrfect,” he said.

“Stop that,” Shilo said. “It was funny five years ago. Now it’s just pathetic.”

In a separate Facebook contest, the cat was chosen to be the new token over such suggestions as a toy robot, guitar, helicopter and diamond ring. Shilo, as you might guess, isn’t putting much stock in the second vote.

“It was on Facebook, for gosh sakes,” Shilo said. “I don’t care what the contest is, if it’s on Facebook, a cat is going to win.”

You have to admit, Shilo had a point.

“You need to go to the store and buy as many Monopoly games as you can find,” Shilo said.

“Why?” I asked.

“To stockpile,” she said. “What if this isn’t the end? What if it’s only the beginning? Sure, they say it was a one-time deal, but what if it’s not? What if they take the wheelbarrow, the top hat or (gasp) THE SCOTTIE DOG?”

I told Shilo to relax. I told her that no one has ever proposed taking away the dog.

“They will get my Scottie dog only if they can pry it out of my slightly dry paws,” Shilo said.

Shilo said she felt a bit sad for the iron. The iron never asked to be the iron. And, really, the iron never complained about being the iron. It just went about doing its job day after day. Always being the last token picked, but always smiling and always showing up for work.

“You could learn a lot from the iron,” Shilo said.

Shilo said the iron — much like all dogs — was loyal.

“Unlike a certain animal that will go nameless but whose initials are C-A-T,” Shilo added.

“Hey,” Peanut Butter said. “Cats are loyal.”

“Cats are the Benedict Arnold of the pet world,” Shilo said.

“Why you! If I wasn’t declawed …” Peanut Butter said.

Shilo said that when she first heard about the online contest, she was worried about the wheelbarrow. She figured that, with a poor economy, the wheelbarrow might be considered a bad fit. But as it turns out, it was the iron that people thought was a bad fit.

“There are no winners here,” Shilo said with a sigh. “Just a bunch of losers.”

“Except for the cat,” Peanut Butter said.

I told Shilo that in the Facebook vote, the cat received 31 percent of the vote.

“What token came in last?” Shilo asked.

“Mitt Romney,” I said.

“Ha!” Shilo said.

DO YOU HAVE AN IDEA for Mike Pound’s column? Call him at 417-623-3480, ext. 7259, or email him at mpound@joplinglobe.com. Follow him on Twitter @mikepoundglobe.

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