Oh, the games we play


When I got my first smart phone years ago, playing Solitaire on it was a favorite pastime. All of a sudden, instead of browsing through magazines while waiting at the doctor’s office, my fingers would nimbly finagle the playing cards, ultimately completing the final configuration that would win the game. It was great fun!

I soon learned that there are a myriad of other games to fill my time. Initially, the Candy Crush series kept most of my attention. It didn’t seem silly at all to match three candies and watch the domino effect cross the board; candies matching, fish swimming, balls of color exploding. In a relatively short time, I was up to level 2457 and still going. The game seems to be kind of a fidget toy for my fingers, but one that also can affect my feelings. (“Yay! I won another level” or “Crap, that is the 235th time I have played this level and I just can’t get past it.”)

Playing Words with Friends has proven to be a more social thought-provoking game, one in which my intellect is being challenged. The friends with whom I play seem to be equally matched, with us taking turns winning. The interlocking words are most often banal with a lot of easy four letter words, but sometimes I learn of new words that were not in my vocabulary. ZA is the official slang word for Pizza. MUZJIKS, a high scoring word, refers to Russian peasants. SMEE is an obscure type of duck. QAPIK is money in Azerbaijan, using the elusive Q without a U. Similarly, FAQIR refers to a type of monk who takes vows of poverty. I play at least 25 games, one word a day with each opponent, usually when relaxing in a nice, hot bubble bath.

More recently, I have discovered that many of my favorite casino slot machines are available on my phone. Out of desperation and withdrawal at being unable to actually go to the casino to play, it was with great excitement that I learned that “Invaders of the Planet Moolah” was available. Sentimental about my brother’s love for this particular game, I play it daily. Each time there is a match and the cows zap the icons up into their space ships, I can imagine my brother laughing giddily and it brightens my day. Each day I am bequeathed two million dollars with which to play, and each day I watch as the money gets dwindled down to nothing. Similarly, the slot machine game “Goldfish” is available. Not only is it a matching game, but irregularly there is a goldfish mini-game where different color fish spout forth extra money. The same thrill is not there as there as when actually playing the game in person with actual money involved, but it should be some consolation that every day my million dollars dwindles down to nothing, which should be a good lesson learned regarding the actually ability to win in the long run.

Another favorite phone game is called “Amazon.” When I was a child, looking through catalogues and picking out what I wanted for Christmas was an annual ritual which I loved. Of course, with my parents being very economical, I was generally gifted with practical items such as clothing or books. However, a whole range of exciting things are available on my Amazon Game; bacon gumballs, Poo-Pourri Toilet Spray, goldfish in a bag earrings, and reusable toaster bags so one can make grilled cheese in a toaster without dripping the cheese everywhere. Fortunately, the more conventional items from Amazon grace my front doorstep regularly; socks, Hershey Kisses, t-shirts, books, curtains, gummy vitamins, and a whole variety of clothing that looks good in the pictures, (but doesn’t look good on me.) Yes! Amazon is my favorite game to play on my phone. Unfortunately, it is the only game that costs me money, LOTS of money …

Life Matters, gmes


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