The Life of Bon: Comeptitive much

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Comeptitive much

Let’s see… Saturday off of school, Sunday off of school, Monday off of school… That’s a three day weekend my friends! You better believe that after only five days back teaching I was already desperate for a little time off. Hubby’s friends invited him to San Jorge (St. George, for those of you who don’t speak Spanish) for the loooooong weekend. A hellish commute home from school Friday afternoon, and we were off!

It took three days of fun and games to discover I’ve got a problem.

I am ridiculously, out of this world, extremely competitive.

For a long time I thought it was a positive trait of mine. I mean, no one wants to play a game with someone who couldn’t care less if they win or lose, right? And I’m passionate. I care. I really care. Sometimes more than anything else in this world.

This weekend I came to the sudden realization that whatever control I once had on my competitiveness (Is that a word? If not, what is the noun form of competitive? Oh, English Language, you have so many holes) had gone out the window. The realization came in the following sequence…

1. We played hours upon hours of mafia. I understand that game was popular in the sixth grade, but somehow a group of twelve 20-something-year-olds managed to absolutely feast on the game. Hubby suggested the game on Friday night, everyone seemed okay with it, and it’s like we just never stopped. Every night about 11 we would start the game and go into the wee hours of the morning, stopping anywhere between 2 and 4 am. Saturday night while playing, Hubby turned to me and said, “Oh my gosh, I think Bon might be the mafia.” Well, I wasn’t the mafia. And for some reason I was incredibly offended that Hubby suspected me. So I did the most logical, sane thing to do, and freaked out. “What?!” I demanded. “You are the WORST at this game! It’s not me! I can’t believe you don’t know me better to know that I am telling the truth right now! I would think you could read me better!” Wow. Hubby was offended. I was embarrassed. We were both in such rotten moods, that we just left the group early and went to bed (…early being 2 am…) And all the fun was gone from the game...

2. Hours that weren’t spent detecting pretend mafia members were spent doing a little a-bump-set-spiking. After trying out and getting cut from the volleyball team both eighth and ninth grade, I am still somehow incredibly devoted and committed to that game. Unfortunately the love is unrequited. Vball will never love me nearly as much as I love him. I want so badly to just dominate that sport. And yet, I feel like I have maxed out at my ultimate skill level, and I am still just barely mediocre. Hubby is always nice enough to let me be on his team; the only problem is he thinks I am alot better at Vball than I am. Meaning that he expects a lot out of me. And when I miss the ball (…and sometimes even miss it multiple times in a row…) he is frustrated. And he tries to give me pointers. And sometimes I take the pointers the wrong way…(I mean, come on, people who suck at vball are going to be extra sensitive when others criticize their vball skills) and then snap at him…which is what happened this weekend. The conversation went something like this:

Hubby: stop running up to get the ball. Just stay in your spot because you’re not where you need to be when I pass it to you.
Bon: I’m just running up to grab the ball when I’m supposed to get the first hit!! You’re supposed to get second!! (Imagine a very upset, frustrated short brunette yelling this with all the passion in her little heart)
H: Whoa, calm down. I’m not yelling at anyone. I’m just saying to stay in your spot.
B: How am I supposed to stay in my spot when there are only four of us?!?! We’re all running like crazy!!!!! (Once again, imagine me yelling…fiercely….)

And then all the fun was gone from the game…

That's me, middle center.  You know I look intense.
3. At this point I knew my competitive drive might be on… well, overdrive… (Get it? Admit it, it’s brilliant) But the real icing on the cake came Monday night. Back from San Jorge, and on our last eve before we had to head back to work and school, we decided to invite over Hubby’s brother and brother’s wife to play a little Settlers of Catan. We debated between playing the game and watching a movie, but I always beg for a game over a movie, and I promised to behave.

You should know a few things about Settlers. The game is extremely competitive. It has some kind of evil power to it. It can make people do bad things. It can make you wish awful catashtrophes upon those you most care about in the world. About halfway through the game, Hubby came out of nowhere and blocked my two roads that I had built in preparation to build a settlement. I had all the exact cards in my hand, just waiting for my turn. I was bugged, but tried to be a good sport about it and just brush it off. 
Five minutes later, on a completely different part of the board, Hubby pulled the same move, coming out of nowhere and blocking me exactly where I was about to build a settlement. Once again I had the exact cards in my hand, and was just waiting for Hubby’s turn to be over so that I could build it. The worst part was that I TRADED with Hubby to give him the cards he needed to build those dang roads. And then he used it to once again block me off.

Now, if you never played Settlers, you probably think this isn’t a big deal.

It is.

And so, once again, I did the most logical, sane thing, and freaked out. “You son of a b****!” I cursed, emphasizing each word with a fiery passion. (I’m so sorry mom if you ever read this blog which I know you don’t)  I'm not a cusser.  And yet, somehow, that was the first word that came to my mind.

And then all the fun was gone from that game...

Hubby was shocked at my sudden outburst.  And hurt. (I haven't met anyone, afterall, who gets pleasure out of being called an S.O.B.)  And I felt awful.  Awful.  Who calls their husband that, no matter how competitive the game is?

It is now very clear to me that my competitiveness isn't anything positive.  But I've given up trying to control the temper.  It is way too freaking hard.  It lashes out so quickly and unexpectedly- as if it is a different part of me.  Instead I am going to take the easier road, and just not play any more games.  I am converting me and Hubby to a life of staring at the tube instead.  How mad can you get at someone when you're watching a movie, right?


  1. Yay! you started your blog back- AND you posted pictures! You deserve an award for this! You should do a post every day, they are so amazing! I am so entertained by them. Although, I am sorry to hear your competitiveness is getting a little out of control.I like the pic of you playing vball and your the ONLY girl out there! I agree that settlers brings out the worst in people, I've seen some pretty crazy tempers come out from that game.

    You can't quit playing games, you wont last a week without them. You know it's true ;)

  2. Anonymous3:44 PM

    Oh man, I can relate...even though I have toned it down a LOT, I can become so irate playing sports. I think sports games are the only times I ever really get upset. Games not so much, but then again, I have never play Settlers :) When I do, I will let you know how it goes.

  3. Bonnie,
    Can I just say how impressed I was when Amber and I played word on the street with you? You and Gregg won, but weren't always winning and you didn't get overcompetitive at all. I think you've worked on this in the last month and it shows. It was just fun to play with you and Gregg, no matter who won.

    It's so funny reading these posts. It's like rewinding my marriage two years and all the things you're working on now are the things I was working on and still am working on. Just yesterday we were playing settlers and I was so frustrated at a friend that blocked me. He had a chance to block me again but was intimdated out of it because of my poor/pissy sour mood after the first block. I got the settlement I wanted, and ended up winning the game. It wasn't a good win though, it felt cheap and I hadn't proven anything except what a baby I could be when things didn't go my way and taking the fun out of it (just like you related in St. George). It takes work, it comes slowly, and if you're like me, it might never be completely cured.