Vists from my parents mean long evenings of the four of us playing board games around the kitchen table. This is fun for me, but torture for my husband, because my parents and I are all in love with words; we play with language, we have huge vocabularies. Fuzzy is smart, of course, but he’s not word-smart, he’s tech-smart, spatial relations-smart. His vocabulary isn’t as extensive as ours (not that I generally USE the words I know – I tend to limit myself far too much), but there is something worse.
He cannot spell.
Now most of the time, this is not a problem. Last night, for example, our game of choice was Phase 10 (I’d lobbied for poker, but…), a card game best described as “gin rummy meets uno.” He did fine with that, especially since the publisher has changed the colors of the cards. (Our set has red, blue, green, and yellow cards; other sets have had red, blue, orange, and yellow cards, and the last two colors were always difficult for my color blind husband to differentiate.)
Tonight, however, we played Scrabble, which is one of my favorite games, but Fuzzy’s least favorite, for obvious reasons. Fuzzy’s a good sport – he mocks himself – but, I know it’s not fun for him, because he can’t spell. And I hate it when he places tiles down, and has to be corrected. I feel bad. And it’s stupid because it’s a game, and it’s supposed to be fun.
Needless to say, I was proud of him, when he came in third tonight, in a very close game (the point spread between the winner and the loser was only 10), and even prouder when he came up with some words that, when challenged, turned out to be allowable. Who knew that obscure knowledge about swords and martial arts could be useful in Scrabble???
I’ve decided that Fuzzy deserves a break, though, and so tomorrow, we’re not playing Scrabble. We’re playing a word game he’s actually good at. We’re playing Upwords. (I hate it, because you can’t use Q without U, but I can live without using such words for one night, I guess.)
But I’d really prefer poker.