What am I thankful for this year?  Glad you asked!  I’m thankful that Thanksgiving Week (11/24-11/30) also happens to be National Game and Puzzle Week!  Personally, I dread the holidays.  I have so little in common with my extended family that getting together those few times each year to sit around on lumpy furniture and stare at each other has become something of an annually recurring nightmare for me.  Which isn’t to say that my family is weird or wrong or bad in any way – I think they’re great (Nice save, Michael!) but that doesn’t remove the fact that reconnecting each year over mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie is really freaking awkward.

Real Family

Not my real family but maybe a little bit like my real family.

THAT IS WHY I LOVE BOARD GAMES, PEOPLE. They are pure magic.  Nothing to talk about with your twelve-year-old cousin who likes to grab your phone when you’re not looking and thumb through your photos? PLAY A ROUND OF MONOPOLY. Ran out of things to say to that aunt or uncle you haven’t seen since last Thanksgiving? GRAB THAT OLD CHESS SET. Really, though. There is no better icebreaker than a board game, especially one that you may have played with relatives years and years ago. It takes the pressure and focus off of one-on-one conversation and gets people to behave more like themselves.  I am such a sassy person, and the only way I can really feel like myself around relatives is to kick their asses at Monopoly.  It’s something of a family tradition.

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So, what do you think?