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Tycho / on Mon, Feb 14 2011 at 12:00 am

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The Ecology Of The Loser

Losing in a game that takes a long time to play feels bad; and losing in a wargame (which has a tactical component, even if dice are the final arbiter) feels worse.  These things are compounded until the defeat becomes a barbed crown of shame, a crown which stands upon each brow differently.

We only had three panels, so there wasn’t one left for me, but I tend to internalize the loss or contextualize it in a greater framework of personal failure.  I lose because I’m bad - at games, and at living.  Bad on the inside.  I’m not a bad loser, as it is my absolute expectation.  What I am is a bad winner.  But this is something that happens so rarely it’s not something people must endure with any frequency.

I can watch a sport, and because it is a game and I like those, I know what it means when the pieces move around.  But this knowledge extends only to this particular instance: my awareness doesn’t extend past the boundaries of the current iteration, there’s no metadata I can use to make predictions, or to claim ownership.  I also don’t care.  So, there’s that.  It’s very different when watching a game you understand unfold, but it also helped me to understand this other pastime, even if I am not currently a subscriber.

I think about our Monday matches all week, and I quickly came to realize that I was thinking about “plays,” such as those catalogued on sports programs about sports where two men talk about “plays.”  I know how far this moves, and also what it means to move that far, even though I wasn’t playing; I bit my nails when the Angelii swept up, and rode each savage reprisal like a wave.  And what, then, if my eyes did sting with its beauty?  I could see the weft of the round’s structure, and the rules threading through, and the great creatures moving atop it, trundling the ragged warp of the fray.

(CW)TB out.

vinegar, vinegar, vinegar

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