Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Most Dangerous Game

by Josh

Since life is a game we're all doomed to lose - thanks, Ingmar - I prefer playing games that I can win. Unfortunately, this considerably narrows my options.

There's baseball, of course, and football and basketball and ice hockey and field hockey and street hockey. There's tennis and badminton and ping-pong. There's even golf, although one could argue that golf, much like drinking, is less a game than a excuse for silly behavior. Interestingly, I can elevate silly behavior to a spectacle, but I am a terrible drinker and an even worse golfer.

This brings us, I suppose, to board games. To the surprise of no one, I have always fancied chess -thanks again, Ingmar - but I know I'll never be as good a player as I imagine I want to be. This actually strikes at the crux of my problem, and why detective fiction - especially that modeled after Poe and Doyle's genius-sleuths - leaves me so frustrated. When I was in second grade, my IQ tested at 139. This is one point below genius. Genius minus one. If I have a monkey on my back, in between banana chews that monkey is taunting, "Genius minus one, genius minus one!" over and over into my left ear while giving my right ear a wet willy.

Yes, my monkey can talk. Why? Is that unusual?

But I'm getting off-topic. I was talking about games. And I do enjoy poker, if only because it's little more than theatre with gambling. Every so often I'll play poker with friends or family and I'll have a grand old time, but the enjoyment is really 99% social and 1% game. Playing poker online, for example, leaves me sensationally bored.

So what's left? Ah yes. The game of love, baby, the game of love-love-love-love-love.

Well...the less said about this, the better.

In the end, I suppose, in this game as in the rest, it just comes down to the fact that I don't enjoy losing. But that won't stop me from making a fool of myself driving to the hoop or castling my king and rook or raising on a 10-high or asking a stranger on a date; like I said, I can elevate silly behavior to a spectacle. Come and see.


Sue Ann Jaffarian said...

Josh, you always seem to make me cry or laugh. Today was laughter, just in case you were wondering. I fancy myself far better than I am at a lot of things, too. Is that because we're writers, or simply because we're human?

Reece said...

Thanks, Ingmar (and Josh). Well played, as always.

Gabi said...

Genius minus one? That leaves the Math Olympics out. Better check your addition.

Joshua Corin said...

Sue Ann, I think it's because we're human writers.

Joshua Corin said...

Thanks, Reece (and Ingmar).

Joshua Corin said...

Gabi, what is this addition of which you speak...?