Although I am actually not old enough to remember the Boer War, I admit, I am kind of fascinated by by contract bridge.
In my all-time favorite book, "The Secret History," Donna Tartt writes about how there was once a bridge fad at (fictional) Hampden College, to the point where bridge rooms were set up and devoted to the game, with tables featuring the four card suits carved into them. The fad died and no one took the tables away, and the rooms end up being used only for drug deals and secret trysts. (Or for discussing the weird murderous habits of your Greek-class pals, but I digress.)
Tartt's point is well-taken: Bill Gates and Warren Buffett love it, but realistically, bridge is never likely to come back amongst college students or anyone younger than 50 (if that). But newspapers still run bridge columns and old folks get irked when said columns are messed with. (Or when they're called "cranky retirees" -- scroll down for that.)
Bridge sounds so complicated, too -- I fear that it's one of those games, like "Settlers of Catan," where you need to play it with people who love it and understand it rather than pick it up on your own. (Friends of mine play "Settlers," which Rob and I have dubbed "Cuttlefish of Satan" for our own weird reasons. I haven't tried it yet, but plan to eventually.)
This New Yorker article from last year takes a fascinating look at the game, and inspired me to buy this book: "The Backwash Squeeze and Other Improbable Feats: A Newcomer's Journey into the World of Bridge."