Illustration of a board game with two blue soldiers advancing on one red solider as the red soldier cries in defeat.

At the Risk of playing board games

No one likes being a poor loser, especially me

#0006

I am surrounded. I could tell there was no hope, no possibility of retreat. I can’t even surrender to the army advancing on my position.

They will accept no surrender. It is kill or be killed in the game of Risk, a game I had never played before, until now.

I’ve never pretended to be a strategist. Figuring out how to conquer nations is not at the top of my fun to-do list, so as I sit here and watch this traveling horde of blue overcome each and every one of my territories, I suddenly feel an overwhelming urge to cry, “It’s not fair!” If I were five again, I would have thrown in a foot stomp and a pout for good measure.

I am surrounded. I could tell there is no hope, no possibility of retreat…so as I sat here and watch this traveling horde of blue overcome each and every one of my territories, I suddenly feel an overwhelming urge to cry, “It’s not fair!” If I were five again, I would have thrown in a foot stomp and a pout for good measure.

My red pieces had once covered the entire Americas, from Alaska through Southern America to the southmost tip of Chile. Now I am just three soldiers surrounded by an inescapable circle of blue plastic men, pointing their tiny bayonets as they advance forward.

Did the competition cheat? Is it truly unfair?

In all honesty, no.

My opponent simply used the rules of the game to their advantage while I made several mistakes along the way that led to the onslaught I was now facing.

There is nothing to do but admit defeat. It felt like defeat—bitter and unpleasant.

I felt like a poor loser, not gracefully accepting the end result of the game.

In my defense, I have very little experience with losing or winning games. My family didn’t play games very often. When I say very often, I mean hardly at all. I remember playing checkers with my dad during vacation once. Then, we had one family game night in my entire childhood. My game experiences prior to puberty were practically nonexistent. In fact, even as I got older, I just avoided games in general. It didn’t seem fun.

And yet, here I was, staring down at the Risk game board, realizing that this is supposed to be fun and, if I am going to get in the spirit of things, I need to accept defeat gracefully. It was my fault, after all. I didn’t just lose (although that certainly is no fun); I surrendered to the inevitable with a decidedly bad attitude about the whole thing.

Nope, I needed to embrace the spirit of competition and learn that one defeat is nothing in the grand scope of game playing.

Realizing that made me feel so much better as I turned in retaliation.

Rematch!

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Honey Madison

  • MiniPost #0031

    Forget Plan A. I’m on Plan F, which comes with a complimentary bottle of vodka.

    #goals #GoalSetting #LifeLessons

  • MiniPost #0002

    Just about anything, if it is shiny, I’ll be attracted to it. I won’t buy it of course. That would be impractical and a house full of reflective objects would be too much stimulation for my highly sensitive self. But if I’m in a store and I see sparkles, I’m all happy smiles and sunshine.