Greg PetersI haven’t played Monopoly in years, and now that they’ve let the cat out of the bag and onto the game board, I doubt I’ll return anytime soon.

At the risk of sounding like the late Andy Rooney, did you ever wonder what those idiots over on Facebook were thinking when they voted out the iron and replaced it with a cat? Lord only knows.

Hasbro, which has been churning out copies of Monopoly since 1935, gave the iron its walking papers on Wednesday — the same day it handed a lush new contract to (gulp) a cat. And not even a loveable cat like Garfield.

This feels like when you watch your cherished co-workers walk out the door with their boxes of belongings after years of dedicated service. How fair was this? The iron had a lot of good years left in him; with him went years of institutional knowledge.

What, indeed, will become of the iron? Perhaps there’s an opening in Candyland. I heard Life was hiring, but you have to have agency experience to get in. Maybe he’ll hook on with Yahtzee just to pay the bills.

An article in the Huffington Post said “Monopoly’s iconic tokens originated when the niece of game creator, Charles Darrow, suggested using charms from her charm bracelet for tokens.”

Despite the introduction of the cat and the axing of the iron, the other tokens remain as they should be: Racecar, Scottie dog, a shoe, thimble, top hat, wheelbarrow and battleship. Scottie and the wheelbarrow were the most recent additions, coming along in the pre-social media days of the1950s, the HuffPost said.

I guess the anachronistic Monopoly is a lot like your daddy’s job search. Everything is in its usual place. You pass go, you collect $200. You do something wrong, you go to jail.

It’s a throwback to the days when you called on the good old boy network to get a job. A time when you were broke and jobless one day, and Uncle Louie had you selling insurance the next.

It sounds a whole lot like today’s social networking job search — only now we’ve got a cat and Uncle Louie is all your Facebook friends. And we have LinkedIn. And Twitter. And if we’re really lucky we can post our interviews on Four-Square and become king of McDonald’s.

While the cat is new, the rents and mortgages haven’t budged in decades. Talk about your ultimate rent-controlled properties. And who goes to jail anymore? Today you just strap on a court-mandated ankle bracelet and hop around like Martha Stewart on house arrest.

Maybe there’s some old-school strategy for the new-age job searcher. Do you put all your eggs in a pricey basket by buying high-risk high-reward properties like Boardwalk and Park Place hoping for the big score, or do you spread the wealth and develop multiple moderately priced properties?

In modern parlance, Boardwalk and Park Place are like the paid job-search services such as The Ladders. Ultimately, they will find you the big score, but is the risk worth the reward?

I always liked to own the railroads. There’s symmetry there. I like to spread my online search presence evenly on a lot of fronts, posting to job boards, LinkedIn, Twitter and other sources. It’s a bit of a scorched earth approach, but such are the times we live in.

The key to Monopoly is your game piece. You have to dress for success. The hat, race car and dog are always good. They show you’re confident and know where you’re going — the business suits of Monopoly.

If you’re going for an off-script play, the shoe, thimble and wheelbarrow are good choices. They are the perfect tact if you’re comfortable going against type. It’s a gamble, but they might be just the kind of different that gets you hired.

That just leaves the battleship and the cat. The battleship, tested and true, but showing its years, much like the older worker trying to hang with the smart-phone generation.

The cat might be your go-to piece. It’s new, It’s bright. It’s got it – whatever it is. Call it the flavor of the week, just be sure to find a way to get with it, or get left behind.

Happy job hunting, and you can read more of my own personal brand of blogging at Xogdog’s Blog or Running 4 My Life. Heck, if you need a blogger, check out my LinkedIn profile and drop me an email. Will blog for food!