Wednesday, January 5, 2011

It's Only A Game...

Many moons ago, CP and I were attending a party at a friend's house, when the game PICTIONARY was pulled out. We were dating at the time. Invincible as a couple. We thought we had this game in the bag.

We were wrong.

The night had been going so well up until that point. Since we were only dating at the time, let us assume that we were probably holding hands... Possibly indulging in public displays of affection or whatever else it is you tend to do more frequently when you are dating, than when you are married. I digress. But things were good.

If you are familiar with the game, please read on. If you are unfamiliar with it, I suggest you click on the link above before reading on. This game is competitive. The aim of the game is to WIN. That's pretty much it. You need to be able to draw your way (or 'guess' your way, depending on which half of the duo you are) to that result. I consider myself quite good at both roles. I am very good at the drawing section, but even better at guessing. And since people had possibly been consuming excessive amounts of alcohol beforehand, I figured this would be a case of WHAM BAM THANK YOU MAM - in our favour.

Round One:

The timer has turned. Everyone is drawing frantically. Their partners are guessing just as quickly. CP puts his index finger thoughtfully on his chin, whilst glancing up pensively at the ceiling, as if some fantastic drawing hand might drop from above, bestowing him with the ability to draw an amazing image that I will be able then guess the answer before all other teams can get in before me!

Other teams are still drawing frantically.

Someone answers correctly. All other teams have pages strewn with a myriad of images; some crossed out, others mini works of art. CP's page - empty.

Maybe we'll have better luck next round?

Round Two:

As above. This round however, CP actually did manage to draw something (and let's - for arguments sake - say it was a circle). I got all excited. My palms started sweating; I was breathing faster. CP paused. Looked deep into the circle he had just drawn, and then scribbled it out and started again. Time over. Another team won. 

I furrowed my brows. How could this be? I am SO GOOD at this game. This kind of result is simply unheard of with me.

Round Three:

As above. This time I glanced furtively at the drawings of everyone else at the table. I didn't even bother to try to look at whatever CP was or wasn't doing. Surely it would be a waste of time anyway?! So as I stared at all the other teams around me, spurting answers left, right and centre. I STILL didn't get it right. I start to wonder how long a relationship can last when one person is so clever at board games such as this, when the other is so phenomenally BAD?!

Round Four:

This time I am the artist. CP is required to guess. The phrase is 'camel toe.' I draw THE best camel you have ever seen drawn in 5 seconds. I draw THE best toe you have ever seen drawn in 5 seconds. I draw an arrow connecting the two best drawings in relation to this phrase. I wait triumphantly for CP to guess the answer. I smile smugly, pointing at the drawings as if the answer is staring him in the face.

Nothing. Not a guess... not a murmer. Not a BURP!

My blood was officially boiling by now. My anger erupted into a blaze of name calling and ability challenging verbal slurs. It was completely out of line, and I fully deserved the backlash that ensued from CP.

Of course, I'm exaggerating.... I mean, since when have I let the truth stand in the way of a good story? But rest assured, it was a pretty heated discussion. It was bad enough that I probably ended up crying and storming home to bed. Alone. I was angry at CP for not being a better drawer. Or a better guesser. Or whatever I wanted him to be. But more to the point, I was angry at myself for being angry at CP.

This was supposed to be a game. I wasn't making it a game. CP had never played before, and I expected him to be either a Picasso or Einstein or something he clearly couldn't be at that time. I felt like I had disappointed him.

If he dragged me out to the sheep yards and demanded that I dench and worm 100 sheep in a matter of hours, and expected I not only complete that task, but that I do it successfully, then I guess the shoe would well and truly be on the other foot.

In any event, we decided not to play Pictionary ever again. It was better for the ongoing serenity of our relationship. Actually... I don't help with the sheep work (yet) either. Maybe it really is better that way? Maybe CP figured that out when he saw what a terrible sport I am when it comes to us working as a team (and screwing up), he decided not to encourage that kind of behaviour.

Now flash to this Christmas just passed. Pictionary reared it's ugly head again. It was a Secret Santa gift.

I wanted to play. I think CP and I can handle it. Apparently the rest of the family feels differently. And in the name of law and order and Christmas cheer, the game was banished. So we played 'Cranium' and 'Jenga' instead. And sometimes CP and I lost. But sometimes we won. And it actually felt nice to just be a team. To have a go and do our best. It felt awesome to win too... but it taught us a lot about who we are as a couple, and how we work better as a team. And basically (with us at least) this comes down to several things. We should avoid anything that involves any sort of creative or dramatic element, and stick to the language and factual aspects of any tasks.

And maybe never, ever, EVER, play Pictionary ever again. Just for arguments sake.


  1. Hi Jess, I've missed your last few posts. Am going to treat myself to a cuppa and a good long read.

    I've only played Pictionary a few times. I'm hopeless at drawing and it seems my mind works differently to most others. I remember once, after I had stumped my partner (which I know is NOT the object of the game) trying to explain what I had drawn and the relationship to the topic and being asked how I figured anyone could possibly have got the connection!

  2. Ah Pictionary. Kate and I played it with mum and dad a while ago. That was challenging.
    Variation on the game you and CP might enjoy - Actionary! You just act out/mime it instead of draw it!


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