Residence: Los Angeles, CA
Date of Performance/Collection: April 23rd, 2013
Primary Language: Spanish
Other Language(s): English, Italian
“One person says things and the other people have to do them or they lose”.
Simon Dice is a Spanish name for Simon Says, a game that kids usually play among themselves. One person is the leader, called “Simon”, and they give commands such as, “Stand on one foot” or “Clap your hands”. These commands are preceded by the words, “Simon dice” or “Simon says”. If the leader does not say these words, the children are not supposed to do the action, and if they do they lose.
The informant played this game back home in Mexico when he was a young boy. He played it with friends at school. He said they he probably wouldn’t find it fun now, nor does he remember it being much fun when he was a kid. This is because it is very simple and not very exciting. He did not know that there is a similar version here in America.
I remember playing Simon Says when I was a kid. However, it was usually suggested by the adults as a group game to keep us entertained for awhile. We could play it at school or at camp. I think at one point I found it fun, because the commands can get pretty ridiculous. And when someone loses, by doing the action when you’re not supposed to, they stand out as the only one who messed up, and everyone laughs at them. I think it’s interesting that the exact same game exists in Mexico, showing that it has been around for some time and traveled across country borders. I also think it’s interesting that the name “Simon” is shared in both versions, although I can’t see a reason why this particular name is important. Note: In the Mexican version, the o in Simon has an accent, but I can’t enter it on the computer.