If Only Real Life Were As Easy As A Board Game

If Only Real Life Were As Easy As A Board Game

Is the Game of Life as simple as it seems?

As a kid, one of my favorite things to do was play board games. Employing financial strategy in Monopoly didn’t interest me, Sorry was too much a game of chance, and one can only play Candyland too many times. But there was the Game of Life. A game where you could choose your career, have a husband, and retire a millionaire- what more could you ask for in a game? In hindsight I think the allure came from the relative tangibility it presented- in 10 years, I would be in college, in 15 years, hopefully married, in 20 years, buying a house, what flaw could a game that presented a tentative look into the future have? None, it didn’t seem, until I played the game as a college student.

The truth that obtaining a college degree isn’t a guarantee of wealth or security.

In the game we played, my brother decided not to go to college, chose a career as an entertainer, and earned $60,000 per year with benefits. I went to college (accruing $100,000 in debt), emerged as an accountant, and made $30,000 annually. Not to say there isn’t merit in a college degree, but it is no longer a golden ticket (metaphorically and literally).

The Game of Life requires you to get married.

We live in a society that is notorious for its bold embrace of individuality. Subsequently, the marrying age has significantly increased, while marriage rates per capita as a nation have declined dramatically. The Game of Life forces you to stop about 10 paces after college/a career decision for marriage, implying not only that marriage is an expectation immediately after you have a semblance of a future, but that marriage is a societal obligation rather than a choice. Success is measured by wealth, not experiences.

Periodically throughout the game, players collect “Life tiles” to commemorate achievements, varying from the birth of a child to winning a game show to becoming mayor. However, at the end of the game, players turn over their life tiles and are awarded money based on the degree of the accomplishment: i.e. $10,000 for publishing a novel to $100,000 for earning a Lifetime Achievement award. This negates the value of collecting tiles throughout the game, and deduces the reward of life experiences to monetary value- after all, the winner of the game is the one who earns the most money. Inadvertently, it poses a bleak and capitalistic assumption that life is measured by financial gain.

Is it appropriate to consider life a game?

Do I believe that the Milton Bradley company intended to make a moral or philosophical assertion about life by creating a board game fashioned like life? No. But the game itself demands introspection about whether it is fair to consider life a game, and ourselves as players. And I think that considering life to be a matter of strategy, something that can and should be “won” in a specific manner, isn’t all fun and games.

Cover Image Credit: Word Press

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.

Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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To The Generation That Might Not Care, A Green New Deal Is Crucial

Take care of our planet and our future.


The reality of climate change and method to address the issue has been a source of contention in the United States for far too long. While Republicans trail behind Democrats a great deal in the percentage who believe long-term, irreversible climate change is a real problem, an equally if not more important gap to acknowledge is that between generations.

A universally taught science concept in elementary school is the difference between weather and climate. Weather is the day-to-day condition of the atmosphere — rainy, sunny, etc. Climate is the weather of a particular geographic location over a long period of time. The weather in an area may be snowy on a particular January day but might overall have a warm climate (Trump has yet to learn this concept).

The gap between generational support for not only believing in the reality of climate change but if the government should take steps to prevent further harm on our planet is apparent. A few reasons that older generations may not support aggressive climate change policies are that many are not going to see the lasting impact of their harmful actions, may not want to acknowledge that their way of life for a majority of their life was detrimental to the environment, or that they simply do not think it is the government's role to further regulate current practices and lifestyles in the name of the environment (an argument supported by many conservatives).

Data For Progress

The "Green New Deal," proposed earlier this month by Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Edward Markey is mainly a list of ideas and goals rather than a carefully laid-out plan, though aims to eliminate greenhouse emissions through the creation of millions of jobs in the renewable energy industry, moving toward public ownership (a major source of disagreement among Republicans and Democrats), and much more. This plan is a comprehensive overview of many sources of environmental degradation that our nation has not addressed, despite the majority of the nation believing the climate change is a real issue.

There will undoubtedly be a major shift in the operations of many companies due to aggressive climate change policies, which could have been avoided at a drastic level if our nation had chosen to make climate change prevention a priority. Unfortunately, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, global temperatures will rise to an irreversible level in 12 years if the United States and other countries that greatly contribute to rising temperatures do not take action. A sense of urgency has been lacking for far too long is crucial.

Written into the recently proposed Green New Deal is a section detailing how it will attempt to remedy the inequality of those most directly impacted by climate change. Vulnerable communities, particularly communities of color, are not seeing an equitable distribution in disaster funding to prevent damage inflicted by the increasing frequency and intensity of natural disasters that have resulted as an increase in rising global temperatures — Which, regardless of your age, should be a glaring flaw in our current system.

I personally doubt that the entirety of the recently proposed Green New Deal will be enacted, however, I believe that anyone who values the quality of human life, clean air, clean water, food sources, for not just those in the United States, but around the world, should be supportive of a Green New Deal.

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