My family, on occasion, can be a wee bit geeky. I’ll be the first to admit it. We tote books everywhere we go. We’ve been known to get up from the dinner table to look up a word. Some of us wear tube socks, and have the tan lines to prove it.
But perhaps the most shining example of our geekiness is that whenever we have family reunions, we become vicious gamers.
No, I’m not talking cool games, such as Angry Birds or Mario Kart or Zombie Gunship. No, we play table games: Scrabble, mahjong, Risk, Monopoly, Yatzee. We get very serious about it, sometimes to the point of people not speaking to one another for a few hours–which doesn’t always go over well with the cook when it’s time to sit down for Thanksgiving dinner. But that’s just the way we are. Super geeky, super competitive, and super serious game-players.
I thought we’d about reached our maximum of un-hipness when we spent most of our last summer vacation together playing Scrabble (which, in case you don’t know, has some fun variations not to be played sober or while there are grandparents around). But then my sister blew that illusion when she called me last December to tell me what she wanted for Christmas. I had drawn her name out of the hat, so it was my turn to get her a gift in our family gift exchange.
“The Settlers of Catan with the seafaring expansion pack.”
“Settlers of Catan. The Seafaring Edition. It’s at the top of my Christmas list.”
So being the cool sister that I am, I hopped online and ordered it for her. Good thing I did, too, because it was in such high demand that many places had it backordered. Anyway, the thing arrived on my doorstep. I took one look at it and decided it wasn’t for me. You know, the package was very medieval-looking and the cards talked about plagues and villages and I knew right away this was one game I would NOT be wasting my Christmas holiday playing.
We played for hours. And hours. We actually became sad when the visit wrapped up and we had to put the game away because it marked the end of our too-short family reunion. Back to the real world.
Which brings me to the real reason we’re such game nuts in our family. It’s because we like each other, and it’s a fun way to spend time together and catch up. Games give us a chance to sit around a table and drink and eat and laugh with people we don’t see very often. And when reality isn’t fun to talk about for whatever reason, we can still be together and focus on the game.
Our next family reunion is this weekend, and I’m so excited. My sister and her family are coming in from overseas, and my parents and other relatives are gathering at my house for a few days. I can’t wait to see everyone. I’ve got my bar stocked, my chocolate-chip cookies baked, and my games all dusted off and ready to go. As we approach our fourteenth day of 100-plus temperatures in Austin, I’m looking forward spending some time indoors instead of roasting in the heat.
Does your family play games? What are they?
Anyone who leaves a comment is entered to win a signed copy of my latest book, UNFORGIVABLE.
And just in case you doubted what I said about geekiness, I’m playing a game today here on the blog. Whoever wins will get a $15 gift card to Starbucks:
Look at the Scrabble board below and tell me the point value of the word “murder” in Murder She Writes. First person to get it right wins the gift card, anyone who comments at all gets a chance to win the book.