We are heading into summer, a time for doing lots of great things outside. One of them is croquet.
We have a small problem, though. The rules.
Apparently there are several sets of rules including the official rules and the Renfro rules. I know what the official rules are. I can look them up in one of several books we have, or in the rules that came along with our croquet set, or if there’s some chance they’ve changed I can be safe and look them up online and know I have the latest ones.
Not so with the Renfro rules. They are how the Renfros played growing up and only Rachel and Donna seem to know them. And I swear they change. I’ve been surprised many times through the decades when someone else thinks they’re winning it turns out that they’re not, or that they did something improper.
I’ve tried different approaches. I’ve insisted that I am right. That was foolish. I’ve suggested that we consult the official rules and accept them whatever they say. That was naive. I’ve asked that the Renfro rules be disclosed before we start playing, reasoning that I don’t care what the rules are as long as I know what they are beforehand. That gets the most interesting results, and leads me to believe that the Renfros don’t actually know what they think the rules are either, since they can’t consistently explain them. It’s like pornography…they know the rules when they encounter the situation. Well, not exactly like pornography.
So as I get older and accumulate wisdom, I find the best approach is to be amused as the game evolves and to enjoy the weather and the company. Everyone else does. Alex, the only one in this picture with no Renfro blood, clearly understands this at an early age. He can be seen staying out of the discussion.