August 24, 2009

Resplendent in D-E-F-E-A-T

Least surprising news of the day: I like playing Scrabble. It wasn't always this way; for years, I was more of a Boggle man. (I used to say that Scrabble was a writer's game, Boggle an editor's game. Pretentious, no?) But in recent years, I've become more enamored of the pride of Alfred Mosher Butts, in no small part to the brief Scrabulous fad, and it's drifted to the top of my board-game greatest hits list. (It wouldn't stand a chance if I could get my hands on another copy of this.)

My lady friend and I like playing Scrabble quite a lot—on our second date, we went here. I win almost every time, which seems to genuinely trouble her, yet she keeps suggesting rematches. However, just last week, she finally defeated me. Take a look:Sorry for the crappy photo, but this is a nice-looking board, some good words here. I'm particularly proud of my use of obscure mammals—I used "ELFIN" to build off "COAT" and make "COATI," and I got a triple-word score in the top left corner with "NUTRIA" (with help from "AA," which is widely regarded as one of those words useful for absolutely nothing other than Scrabble, but I first learned it in a Green Lantern comic book. So there).

Nonetheless, the lady was victorious, 304–292. In my defense, she picked and used every high-value letter; I was able to play nothing higher than a Y. And no one got a bingo. (That "MURDERER" at bottom left was me adding "ER" to her "MURDER." And hey, it intersects with "AXE"!)

However, tonight is our big rematch. I need to decide what's more important to me: winning the game, and thus maintaining my game-playing pride, or losing the game, and making my girlfriend happy. A tough choice for someone like me.