Kurt Vonnegut, 1922-2007Andrew Leonard, who writes a column on globalization called “How the World Works” for salon.com, shares his memory of Thanksgiving Day when he was 12 years old and Kurt Vonnegut, a friend of his father, was visiting. Vonnegut invited him to play a game of chess, with a twist.

On a whim, he suggested that we rearrange the board. Why did the pawns have to go in front, those sacrificial lambs about to be chewed up by the slaughterhouse of the front lines, those powerless vassals of the high and mighty? Let’s force the feudal lords out of their foxholes and into the hurly-burly!

Let’s put the pawns in the back row, he proposed. Let’s put the knights and bishops and kings and queens in the front rank!  (click here to read the full article)

Vonnegut, you Hoosier rascal, if you only knew. While school boards quibble over whether to pull Of Mice and Men from 11th grade required reading lists, parents like me are passing on our dog-eared copies of Cat’s Cradle to our teenagers to help them laugh in times like these.

Hi Ho.