OK, now, before we start playing, we should get one thing out of the way. Hasbro says it's going to allow people to play by their own rules from now on. It's going to publish the most popular "House rules" that people use, right there in the rulebook. Well, I say forget it. We play it straight, strictly according to the real rules, or the way the rules used to be, back when rules meant something.
I mean, Monopoly is not a dinner party, and it's not a game of Twister. It's not about being flexible. It's about real estate, and commerce, and it's about knowing how to make deals. Listen, while we're talking, why don't you go ahead and count out the money? It's two five hundreds, two one hundreds, five fifties, six twenties, five tens, five fives and five ones, except instead of five ones I just use another five, so that's six fives. We don't need ones. We can just agree that every dollar amount gets rounded up or down to the nearest five, O.K.? I've played that way for years and it works fine, except for when somebody lands on Mediterranean without any houses and the rent's only two bucks. If that happens I promise I'll give you a five, and you can keep the change.
Like I said, Monopoly's all about making deals. You know what I like best? I like when I've got a pretty low-rent monopoly, maybe the light blues or even the railroads, and I've also got a piece of every other color group on the board, so nobody can make a deal without coming through me. And I won't make a deal unless I get another monopoly out of it. That's when the game gets really fun, when people start wheeling and dealing. And I'm open to just about anything, so long as I get another monopoly. Of course I also need some cash in that deal, too, because a monopoly's not worth much unless I can build on it, right? And if I can see you've got a big stack of cash, and not much property, then it only makes sense that you should give me some of that cash. Otherwise, if I leave you with all that money and a monopoly you can build on, I might as well give up and go home. Except this is my house.
Speaking of houses, remember, if you have to take them down because you're losing, you only get half price for them. I know it seems like a bite, but that's what the rules say. And you have to sell your houses before you can mortgage the property they're on. It's in the rules. That thing about paying 10 percent interest when you un-mortgage a property, though, that's nuts. Who's got time for that? Did you bring a calculator? We can just mortgage and un-mortgage, same price for both.
Um ... it looks like you only gave me fifteen hundred bucks. I think that's a couple of hundred short. I better count it.
When you do have to pay interest, or parking fees, or street assessments, or anything like that, all that goes into Free Parking. I've seen that get crazy, like this one time there was three thousand bucks in there, on top of the five hundred that's supposed to be in there. That five hundred bucks is in the rules, yeah. I'm pretty sure. Fine, look it up.
So it's not in the rules, big deal. Listen, everybody plays this way, otherwise what's Free Parking even for? It's quantitative easing. And don't talk to me about property auctions, either. I've never met anybody who thought a property went up for auction the first time somebody landed on it. Seriously, it'd never work. Who's supposed to be the auctioneer? The banker? Have you even played this game before?
Yes, I did just tuck a five hundred into my sock. That's my reserve. I didn't steal it or anything, it's just out of sight.
All I know is, if you start messing with the rules, it's going to be chaos. I think Hasbro's making a big mistake. House rules, indeed. The only house rule I've got is this one: I get the racecar. Now roll.