Monday, March 3, 2008

'Board' to Tears

It never ceases to amaze me that of all the things I dislike - and there are many - the one that throws people in to great degrees of distress is board games.

What is the big deal about not particularly liking board games? Come on - does anyone really love Monopoly? It takes like six hours to play, focuses heavily on real estate, and I'm sorry, but I have a hard time believing that anyone really pays cash for a railroad.

Keep in mind also that Monopoly was invented during the depression by a guy wishing he had money to go out and do FUN stuff.

Contrary to popular belief amongst my game-playing friends, my hatred was not fueled by growing up in a family of board game nazis. We just didn't play a lot of games.

First of all, Mickey, our garbage disposal of a dog, always managed to eat the pieces. This was especially detrimental considering half our games were inherited from my grandmother's basement and had lost a good amount of pieces between 1959 and 1977 anyway. Second of all, games were boring. I vastly preferred books. Still do.

The only fond memories of game playing I have are playing Trivial Pursuit with the Peruskis. Rose and I played as a team against her dad, Uncle Mark, and brother Gregory. We always lost because Mr. Peruski was one of those people who retained a freakish amount of trivial knowledge. I love playing Trivial Pursuit with Rose's family. It loses its appeal to me when played with other people. (I also play Cranium with the Persuksis and Craig the pharmacist, but only when copious amounts of tequila are involved.)

But I digress.

What spawned this post is that things came to a head in our house yesterday when Noe apparently decided that there was a void in his life due to my lack of game play. When I came home from the gym this evening (five miles, go me!) he met me at the door with a newly-purchased edition of Scrabble.

Why Scrabble? Because I was an English major, I read all the time, and I like crossword puzzles. Noe reasoned that if I were going to learn to love any game, by default it would be Scrabble.

I was in a fairly accomodating mood, coming off a good day at work and a not-too-miserable five-mile run. I agreed to give Scrabble a shot.

(That's right - I had never played. I can see your jaws hitting the floor. I swear, I really don't think it's THAT weird.)

So after a cursory glance at the instructions, we were off. And of course I drew vowel after crappy vowel, never managed to have words long enough to hit the triple scores, and earned an average of about four points per word. Noe beat me 330 to 178. wasn't half bad. I have agreed to play again. I might have even enjoyed it a little bit.

Don't jump the gun here and start inviting me to game nights or anything, though. This is a word game. It involves elements I like. I am willing to keep playing Scrabble, but don't expect me to convert to a full-fledged game lover.

(Although I will play Christmas Story Monopoly when the holidays roll around, but that's mostly because I want to be the leg lamp.)


Alexis said...

I surprisingly haven't played must Scrabble in my lifetime, but I am addicted to Scrabulous on Facebook. It allows you to look up words (i.e., cheat), and the fact that it isn't real-time takes away the pressure.

I feel like I'm spamming you now. Free ringtones?

Alison said...

When people find out that I don't know how to play Euchre and have NO INTEREST in learning (I'd never even heard of it until moving to Michigan), they flip out on me. I, on the other hand, do enjoy board games on occasion. There are actually some fun modern games (Balderdash, Apples to Apples) that are a blast with a big group of people.

Jennifer said...

I don't like board games either. To be honest I would much rather play computer versions. I can think of 100 things I would rather do than play Monopoly, but I am totally down for playing on the Wii!