May 5th, 2008


Sunday is Unintentional Game Day

I don't normally play a lot of games. I do have a semi-regular poker game I attend ever few months, and I don't really consider my local bar's trivia night a game per se, but I don't have any kind of video games at home -- I'd never get any work done if I did -- and though I'm sure i have a few old board games tucked away in my apartment, I haven't played them in probably decades. A friend gave me an awesome-looking Justice League of America Monopoly set for my birthday years ago, and it's still in its plastic wrap. When it comes to pastimes, games just aren't what come to my mind first.

And yet today accidentally turned out to be all about games.

First, I went to visit my friends Mark and Dalila at Mark's apartment in the afternoon and wound up playing with his new Wii. We made a Mii for me, then played Wii Bowling, where I did all right, scoring in the 160s, and Mario Kart, which was insane and routinely ended with me in last or close to last place.

Then I discovered tonight was Game Night at the same local bar that does trivia night. The bartender, a friend of mine, told me to come by at 8:30 PM for a Connect Four tournament. So I did, but before the Connect Fours came out, I found myself embroiled in what I swear to God was the longest, most monstrous game of Uno anyone has ever played. I think it lasted an hour. We had to reshuffle the cards four times. It was crazy.

I was also introduced to a completely insane card game called Jungle Speed. I can't even describe the experience except to say that I only watched, too frightened to play. Something about matching designs on cards and grabbing a stick from the middle of the table. Even thinking about it now is making me nuts.

Then a bunch of us played a board game I'd never heard of called Tsuro: The Game of the Path, which was actually quite fun and clever, and certainly less crazy-making than Jungle Speed. You get tiles to put on the board and use them to build pathways to move your piece along. The object is to avoid winding up on a path that will lead you off the board and to be the last one still on the board. We played several rounds. I won one of them.

By the time I went home at 11 PM, the Connect Four tournament still hadn't started. I have a feeling it won't, because Tsuro was such a hit.

I think every Sunday night will be game night at the bar from now on. I don't know how often I'll go. As I said, games aren't really my thing. But I did have a good time today.
Which one of you bitches...?

My Secret Shame

I have an unhealthy fascination -- nay, some might say addiction -- to The Real Housewives of New York City. Damn you, Bravo! I can no longer claim to not watch reality shows!

There isn't enough therapy in the world for these women's children. Especially not "The Countess" LuAnn's kids, who look absolutely crushed every time we see them. Both, I suspect, will grow up to be serial killers.

Ramona is a monster. She frightens me.

Alex lives in my neighborhood, but I don't think I've ever seen her or her husband on the street.

Jill I sort of like, but even though she's got a sense of humor she's still an overly privileged socialite at heart. The kind who walks out of exclusive fashion shows because she's seated in the second row instead of the first. Interestingly, she happens to live in the building right next to the one I lived in from 1981-1984. (And, amazingly, her sister lives in Westport, Connecticut, where I lives from 1972-1981. It's like everyone in that family is following me around!)

Bethenny is the only one I can stand, because she is the only one who is even remotely normal, despite being plastic-surgery fake from head to toe, and even despite trying to pressure a guy she's only been dating for a few weeks to marry her. But she's funny and at least slightly more down to earth than the others. Unlike, say, Luann, she doesn't talk to "the help" like they're children.

The reunion show was particularly a train wreck. It really came out how much they all hate each other. Ramona stormed out at one point, and Alex came off looking like she has Asperger's.

None of them are actually housewives, technically. They all have careers, but more tellingly, none of them spends enough time at home, either with their children or taking care of the house, to be called housewives.

Oh God, someone please help me.