Today is Saturday, August 19, 2017

Game Night

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You can learn a lot about someone by the way in which they play a game. My husband and I both come from families that enjoy playing games during get togethers. Because of this, I thought we would be very compatible but alas, there are two types of game playing families and we each belong to a different sect.

I come from a large Greek family and never miss an occasion to go home. The moment I walk in the door for a family event age goes out the window. I’m 11 again and it’s the girls vs. the boys playing football on the lawn or spoons on the pack porch. To say we are competitive is to put it mildly. Age hasn’t mellowed us either.

Recently, I attended a cousin’s engagement party back in Memphis. After we all came in and gave everyone our hugs and kisses, I heard my cousin Jerry scream out from the crowd. My cousin is 40 and a successful business owner and father of two. To his wife’s horror, he yelled out “Hey, I brought Stratego!”. Now, every family has their board game of choice. Ours is Stratego. It’s a board game much like Chess. Except it’s really nothing like Chess – or rather you might say it’s a dumb man’s chess.

Jerry then screamed out “ I call Angel for my team!” Now, I should mention that most of my family members choose me first when picking teams. They do this for two reasons. My team always wins. And my team always cheats. I really don’t know how to play any board game without cheating.

The first time I had my husband over to meet the folks, I introduced him to my family’s version of game night. After dinner, we all sat around the crowded dinner table to play Monopoly. We had been playing for about 40 minutes, when my husband saw me “discreetly” open my purse and bring out my “other” stash of Monopoly money, that I had brought from home to “supplement” my game. He was mortified by my actions. I was mortified that he wasn’t stealing my brother’s hotels as I had instructed him to do. There and then I realized game night would never be the same.  These days during holiday gatherings, when the games begin, it’s my family vs. all the people we married. Apparently, all the cheaters in my family have somehow married killjoy non-cheaters who get all upset when they lose. They refuse to play cards with “our” deck, refuse to acknowledge “shake the table” is a legitimate round of Jenga and refuse to play football with us because they might “get hurt again”. 

My husband’s family belongs to the other game-playing sect. In his home, they read the rules BEFORE they start the game. Their games take hours and hours because when you don’t cheat, games never end! They enjoy games requiring skill and thought. Their favorite is Scrabble. Who ever heard of a game of spelling? They consider it fun. I consider it agony! Believe me, the torture method of water-boarding is nothing compared to 5 hours of Trivial Pursuit – The 80’s Version.

What I find most astonishing about this other sect is that they don’t understand that winning is everything. They droll on and on about - its not whether you win or lose, but how you play the game. I suppose that’s one way to live your life.

I prefer to live instead by my Father’s words said to my brother and I before each of our high school games. You could always find him at the kitchen table reading the evening paper as we walked out the back door. He would see us coming, push his reading glasses down his nose and say, “Don’t come home if you lose!” He wasn’t kidding either.        

Telling Tales 

Angel Kane and Becky Andrews live in Wilson County. This is their story (or tale) about their life, families and times that they share. Besides their weekly column Telling Tales Angel and Becky Co Founded Wilson Living Magazine. The idea of developing a magazine for Wilson County first came to Becky and Angel one afternoon while they sat on her back porch watching their children play in the backyard. 

They were discussing the outpouring of emails, calls and responses to their column “Telling Tales” and wanted to find a way to capture that community spirit. People were stopping them wherever they went to share their own “tales.” They suddenly realized everyone has a story to tell and many of these stories were amazing. And in that moment, Wilson Living Magazine came to life. Be sure to check out Wilson Living Magazine at

You can contact Angel at - You can contact Becky at 

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