The Puddy Winning/Losing Paradigm
Over here at Casa J. N’ Nic, we love playing games. Our preference is for board games but Pud, J. and myself have been known to have some killer MarioKart showdowns on the Wii.
Lately our game of choice has been “The Big Bang Theory” trivia game. Puddy found it on the store shelf a few weeks before Father’s Day and *insisted* we buy it for J. for Father’s Day. I was reluctant as board games based on TV shows are usually super lame. (With the exception of “The Family Ties” board game – that, my friends, is a classic piece of trivia-based entertainment. Damn Skippy!) But on the contrary, it is a fun little escapade that the whole family can play.
Pud is only 6 and the game is rated for ages 12 and over. But there are no special rules, no hints, no “second guesses” for The Pud. He plays just as J. and I play. The only exception is that we don’t ask him the science based “fact” questions. (It seems unfair to ask about scientific theory when the kid hasn’t even learned photosynthesis yet. I’m trying to convince J. it is also unfair to ask me these questions as I failed grade 11 chemistry but so far he remains unconvinced). All other questions are fair game. Pud has been watching the show as long as we have so his knowledge of Sheldon et al. is on par with ours.
We have never coddled The Pud when playing games. We play by the rules and everyone has an equal opportunity at winning. There have been some cuthroat games of UNO at our kitchen table…and yes, some have ended with an angry Pud throwing his cards on the floor. There have been tears, temper tantrums and accusations that “Mommy was cheating!” (er…OK…I once used slight of hand to ditch my gingerbread card during a particularly vicious game of Candyland.)
J. and I just shrug. The Pud has to learn you cannot win every time. We would be setting him up for failure if we led Pud to believe he wins every time. Or that he is “owed” a victory.
And when Pud does win (which is not a rare occurrence…the kid is an UNO shark) the victory is all the sweeter. He gets to bask in the glory of “beating Mommy and Daddy” and we get the privilege of watching him enjoy a win based on his own merits.
As he did tonight. Bazinga!