It’s common knowledge amongst my friends and family that I am a boring old fart, spoil sport, misery guts, party pooper. I will happily admit that, and own the title.
What have I done to earn this infamy?
I don’t play games.
In fact, I hate them.
Ok, I don’t hate games. There are a few I will play. I like an old fashioned game of mah-jong, and I am pretty good at poker, and I thoroughly enjoy a game of Scrabble every now and then. Give me a good 1000 piece puzzle and I will sit for hours, completing it, and I don’t even mind doing this with someone else helping me, but as me to join in a game where I have to beat other people in a group and I will rapidly retreat, or play to loose as fast as possible to get out of the game.
I simply don’t enjoy playing games, in groups, with groups, as a group. I never have, and never really will or want to.
There, I said it. Now you know why the title of boring old fart, party pooper is mine.
I don’t know if it is being a naturally anxious person who feels that game put me under pressure to perform and compete (which I loathe. I was excellent at spelling at school but refused to take part in competitions to prove this) or if it’s just not getting the point of game playing or a combination of both.
I am very happy to sit and read my book and knit, and watch from the sidelines whilst other people play, but this never seems to be enough for the game playing lovers who feel affronted that I don’t want to join in. Like most things it seems that someone not wanting to participate is more offensive than bullying someone into taking part when they really don’t want to.
I don’t particularly enjoy the competitive dynamic, the having to be the best, beat everyone, someone having to be the smug but pretending to be gracious winner, and someone having to be the looser and be polite about that.
I get bored, very quickly when I am pressured into joining a game, and I also find the whole process tedious. It gives me no pleasure, so therefore I would rather not.
But, the world, and people think that I should, somehow, force myself to participate. I have tried, it never gets enjoyable and I would just rather not. People buy me games to play, to try and encourage me to like them. I donate them to charity or let them gather dust in our cupboard.
My children and husband enjoy playing games, and I don’t stop them. I will happily do other things whilst they play, and they know now, that it’s not personal, that my joining in is a form of slow torture I would prefer to avoid. They leave me be. Occasionally I will suffer through a painful family game of Monopoly, counting the rounds til I can run away and make dinner or call bedtime but generally I try and sit it out. I will refuse invitations to games evenings, or only go on the understanding that I won’t play, but am happy to watch. I won’t sign up for anything team building that involves game playing dynamics. Thanks, but no thanks.
Life is a game, we all play it, I prefer not to spend my precious spare down time pretending to play a game, when real life is a hard enough game to play and try and win. So if you ask me to join in a game, don’t be offended if I say no thanks. It’s not you, it really is me. I am the party pooper, boring old fart, I am ok with that. You will have much more fun if I don’t join in, I promise… 😉