Your Quarters Worth

Back On Board (Games)

Remember playing games as a kid?

Maybe you’ve got kids of your own and play some with them.

Not those games. The other kind. We’re talking about board games.

Unless you were deprived by bad parents and possibly home-schooled, board games are to certain to be a significant element of your past.

From the first ones we experience, like Chutes And Ladders, Candyland, and Cooties, to the more complex and advanced from later in life, like Monopoly, Risk, and Catan, boards games have always been there.

Board games arm us with skills used all throughout life.

Hand-eye coordination is built by grasping game pieces and rolling dice. Risk assessment, decision making, math, and negotiation can be found in almost all games. There’s even temper control, debate, and cheating without getting caught. The list is endless.

With so many benefits, and the cherished memories that come with, it’s a wonder why people play board games so much less as they get on in years.

Life is busy, a constant jumble of working hours and tasks on a to-do list.

People see friends less and for shorter durations. Board games take time and space to setup and play out. And when we do get together our attention is diverted by smart phones, social media, and other virtual and ‘e’ experiences.

We’re seeing our relations even less since the coronavirus pandemic, if at all. When sharing spinners and Pop-O-Matic bubbles now require gloves and alcohol based disinfectant spray, it’s no surprise that old fashioned board games have degraded into figments of nostalgic long-term memories.

The world is different today.

What used to entertain us then seemingly isn’t fast, intense, or colorful enough for modernity.

Then again, maybe we should slow down. Perhaps we should take some time to appreciate old school low-tech entertainment every so often.

Operation, Trouble, and Guess Who foster connection and relationships better than Playstation, XBOX, and Nintendo ever will anyway. And playing board games like Chess, Life, and Battleship bring out the best and sometimes the worst in each of us. They recall a time when life and the world was much simpler than it is currently.

Luckily, board games are still available at big box stores, local supermarkets, and online marketplaces.

Vintage iterations can be uncovered at second-hand stores and flea markets. Most of those had better quality manufacturing right here in the U.S., as opposed to modern iterations made with cheap labor and and cheaper quality parts. For instance Mouse Trap, pictured above, is non-functional junk in its modern interpretation.

The next time you get bored you should get out the board.

You should hook up with friends and family members, if it’s safe to, and play a board game. Do the unthinkable by looking into another’s eyes and connect with something other then a cell phone or TV screen.

It’s time to dust off those colorful cardboard boxes you’ve been storing in the closet all these years. Connect 4, Scrabble, and Kerplunk are calling. Just be nice to your fellow players. Don’t take the results too seriously. They’re just games.

Written by John Andreula

Edited by Kodid Laraque-Two Elk

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