Games Make Great Presents

Risk Macros

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This is a commercial. Of sorts. A good friend of mine runs a game store in Kingston, RI called “Games Less Ordinary.” I’ve known Anne for almost 20 years now, and we’ve gone through a lot, and I am so incredibly proud of her for starting her own store and running her own business. Years ago when we were dating, she would talk about starting her own business and being her own boss. I love that she found a way to make those dreams and hopes come true.

It’s also not a great time to be a small business owner, what with that pesky economy and all. If you are considering buying a game for someone for the holidays, or just for your own enjoyment, I hope you’ll consider checking out Games Less Ordinary’s Amazon Storefront and ordering from there, or calling them to special order something if they don’t have it in stock. If you happen to be in Kingston, RI you should stop by and check out the store. I don’t play a lot of board games myself, but I know that my friends who play board games on a regular basis have a great deal of fun. I’m going to make an attempt, in the new year, to play more games as a social activity.

Besides, it looks like playing board games can help keep you from going crazy:

In the New England Journal of Medicine study, researchers looked at leisure activities of seniors over a 20-year period to see whether they developed dementia. The study also examined the result of frequently challenging the brain by doing crossword puzzles, playing board games or cards, reading, writing for pleasure and playing musical instruments. They also looked at physical activities’ affect on the brain, such as tennis or golf, swimming, dancing and housework.

They found a reduced incidence of dementia among the people who participated in reading, playing board games, playing musical instruments and dancing. And the researchers found that people who engage in the activities were more frequently less likely to develop dementia.

[From Brain Workout Benefits, Study: Reading, Playing Board Games, Dancing May Prevent Dementia – CBS News; Emphasis added.]

Ok, so it’s not necessarily a 1-to-1 correlation between playing board games and avoiding dementia, but come on, it’s gotta do more good than watching that episode of The New Adventures of Old Christine, House, or America’s Next Top Model.

My game was Risk.1 God I loved that game. I know there are more complex and nuanced war games out there, but there’s something about Risk that just works for me. I miss playing it. I miss the combination of skill and luck and sometimes diplomacy and trickery that went along with the game. I miss spending time with four or five good friends for three, four, sometimes five hours while playing. I remember playing with Clay, Kevin, Jen and a number of others all throughout high school. I especially remember those winter days when we would get together at Clay’s house and play Risk and then have snowball fights and either play more Risk or watch movies. Fun times.

What games do you play or have fond memories of playing? Drop me a comment before heading over to Games Less Ordinary and I hope you’ll consider giving a game as a gift this year and that you will consider getting it from my friends awesome, terrific, wicked cool, and totally rad game store.

On this day..

  1. Which, ironically, Games Less Ordinary does not have listed in their online store, but I know that if I called them up today, they would special order it and I’d have it by next week. []