It’s a Numbers Game

I love board games.

Pre-COVID, I loved my monthly full-day board gaming extravaganzas. I affectionately called them “nerdathons.” Thirty to forty of us avid game nerds would gather and play new games or break out old classic like Settlers of Catan.

While I’ll be excited to get back to my nerdathons,  I’m grateful to have played frequent online matches of Settlers of Catan with my brothers and old friends during lockdown.

Before this newest wave of coronavirus cases shutdown LA anew, I’d been planning a gathering with local friends. The host was itching to play in-person Catan. He was still sore about losing the one game of Catan we’d played in the past year. And until he mentioned it, I’d forgotten about that last game. I’d come out on the losing end too — and I’m someone who used to HAVE to win — but I realized I no longer wrapped my identity around winning.

It dawned on me that online Catan had reduced game friction: no commuting to each other’s houses, no setup & clean up, much shorter games with the online timer. And by playing more games, the mport of each individual game lessens. I’d won my share of games. And I’d lost many more.

I discovered that my identity no longer hinged on whether I’d won or lost a game.

I discovered that it was simply a numbers game.

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