I started playing professional scrabble sometime in 2012, and that same year, I went on to represent my state at the national sports festival in Lagos.
Even though I could not place respectably in the final standings, it was a tournament I thoroughly enjoyed, one that heralded my induction into the scrabble family.
From 2012 till date, I’ve been a scrabble enthusiast, partaking in a handful of such events and even though I haven’t quite won a prize yet, it has become part of my life; something I spend respectable money and time on for two reasons:
1. The healthy competition it provides.
2. My bid for mastery
At the just concluded Ibadan Scrabble Opens (16th and 17th August), there were a few observations I made. Some of these observations are already familiar to you, some others; you probably don’t pay a lot of attention to. Whatever the case may be, I thought to share ‘em as they are applicable even beyond the confines of scrabble. They are applicable to/in a host of endeavors and life in general:
1. There will always be different levels as far as proficiency is concerned (scrabble has the Opens (rookies), Intermediate and Masters categories) and you always have a choice to strive to be the best even as far as your ‘level’ is concerned.
2. Attaining mastery in scrabble takes time and effort. It isn’t automatic. There are players who have spent years honing their skills, experiencing different scenarios on the board and their years of experience comes in handy especially when tackling precocious talent. YOU CAN NEVER PUT AWAY THE EFFECT OF EXETENDED DEVOTED TIME in any endeavor.
3. There are different kinds of players. Some take it as “simply a game” and come only to enjoy themselves. Some take it as a do or die affair and come up with any means just to win. Some take it as an art and learn to be better with each game. For some, it is what they eat and sleep and live on. It behooves on any individual to accord it the effort required as far as its importance is to him.
4. In the scrabble rating system, there are points allocated to each player per win or loss or draw that add up to determine his placement, whether he falls in the Opens (rookie), Intermediate or Masters categories. Players who know they probably aren’t good enough yet to progress to the next “difficulty level” sometimes throw some of their games in order to remain in their present category and win something or at least be part of the best before they move on to the next. Well, there are two sides to this. Either the player that does this is lazy and unwilling to stand up to the challenge of beefing up his game as a result of his ascension up the scrabble rungs or the player knows he doesn’t stand a chance at the next level yet and as such “humbles himself” as it were. In my case, I wouldn’t purposefully throw any game. I don’t know about you.
Guys, I reckon I should chill with the attempt at dishing out nuggets. Just thought I should share a few lines from my book of scrabble memoirs.
Do have a smashing day.