Recently, I have been prompted to take a long deep look into my psyche and the picture that has emerged is not pretty. Far from being the chilled out, mellow, bonhommying creature of my imaginings, it seems that I am, in fact, a fully paid up member of the school of bad losers. Rotten losers! Foul tempered, sulky, ungracious in the extreme, losers! And nowhere does this become more apparent than whilst engaging in that seemingly innocuous game, Scrabble. Unreasonable though it is, the minute those little letter-covered blocks emerge from their wee green sack, my territorial instincts come hurtling to the fore. ‘I am the writer,’ I shriek as if this, in some way, negates everybody else’s ability to spell or even to understand English. ‘I should have the last word!’ And this, regardless of whether the other participants (armed with Eng. Lit degrees) or even all the King’s horses and all the King’s men beg to differ. ‘Hah! Call that a word,’ I yell, my dudgeon rising to heights unscaled by any other dudgeon in the history of dudgeons. ‘Well, I never heard of it, and it’s no good stabbing your finger, that dictionary is clearly wrong.’ But, of course, the same rules are somewhat more elastic when it comes to my own contributions. The trick is to look both incredulous and aggrieved (should not be attempted if you’ve had Botox). ‘What? You’ve managed to live on this planet for the last hundred years and never heard of zuvixyfug?. Yes, yes, it’s supercalifragilisticexpialaudacious – (imagine how much that scores on a triple) – but to hell with the moral high ground, I want to win! I want to conquer (‘q’ and ‘u’ are always a handy combination). And you know, when you think of it, Scrabble is a good metaphor for society. There are the high scorers and the inventive (me!), the play-it-by the rules mob, (safe, but dull), and the out and out losers. A quick look at our politicians will demonstrate exactly what I mean. Spice up a dull moment by putting them into each category. If necessary, you can invent a new one, e.g., ‘extremely stupid’ or ‘born without a brain’. You can do the same with members of the judiciary, footballers (must look up how much super-injunction scores), actors and celebs, your boss, friends and family. The list is endless.
Scrabble– it sorts the wit from the chavs. I’m in it to win it!