Getting schooled

The only member of the family who plays without his jeans

The Johnson entertainment fad of the week is: the Hasbro Spiderman Memory Game.

Currently the Gort is slightly obsessed with playing Memory at least once a day. Sometimes two or three times daily. ‘I’m a pretty good Memory’ he confides. I guess he’s still searching for the one-word noun that describes Memory-game-player.

‘We’ set the game up on the coffee table. Seventy two (well, we’ve lost four) cards are placed face down. Then the madness begins – to find each card’s match. ‘I wonder who’ll get the first match,’ he sings excitedly. (Even though it’s him – ninety percent of the time.)

Frankly it’s the only mental exercise I’m getting these days. Aside from counting to one hundred (at the frequent request of my oldest) while making lunch or dinner. So I relish these games with the Gort, even if he exclaims ‘yes!’ whenever he gets a match.

It kind of gets on my nerves.

Nobody likes playing games with a cocky individual. Especially when the individual is possibly better at the game. So I’ve instructed him that it’s not nice to boast about getting a match. But I’m not sure if I did it to make him more socially palatable, or just to make myself feel less annoyed when I’m playing with him. I’ll say it’s both.

It is somewhat pathetic how ‘sour’ my mood gets as he collects match after match, while I sit opposite him, match-less. (At least temporarily.) I start complaining about how he’s shifting the cards around (how am I supposed to remember where anything is if it’s getting moved around constantly). I demand that he show me both cards when he uncovers them (he likes to just peek underneath and if it’s not the card he wants, he puts it back down, without showing it to me.)

Some might call that cheating. Jason (proudly) thinks it’s strategy.

I also whine about the distractions that hamper my once superior mnemonic abilities. I find myself trying to soothe a crying infant all while a bored two year old jumps onto my back. I bet Alex Trebek would have trouble remembering the exact location of Captain Superamerica if he had to hold a crying child while another jumped onto his back. Repeatedly.

The professor plays too, sometimes. But he really is not gifted in the mnemonic realm. Even so, he challenged me to a game last night. I’m not sure what’s sadder: challenging your spouse to a game intended for 3-6 year old kids, or delighting in (the possibility of) beating your spouse at a game intended for 3-6 year old kids.

‘Who do you think is going to win,’ I whispered to the Gort, prompting his father to ask the same question. ‘I think mommy will win,’ he predicted. ‘She’s quite a good Memory.’ (Somebody give the kid a word for Memory-game-player!)

Sure enough, I triumphed. And it made me happier than it should have. Because I’m a sad, competitive soul who likes to win. Even if the victories involve beating a five year old kid, or a thirtysomething professor with a sketchy memory, at a card-matching game. Intended for preschoolers.

As I searched for a link to the game on Google, I found a link to an online Spiderman memory game.

Life just got a little bit sweeter for me.

5 thoughts on “Getting schooled

  1. sweeter because now the Gort can play without you…or sweeter because you can work on improving your skills without the gloating “yes” ringing in your ears? 🙂

  2. Amy – sweeter because now I can stay up late playing by myself. Without having to shuffle and set up the cards. Leo – oh yeah, hard is….hard. Best I can do is get all the matches with 3 seconds to spare. And it took several, um, tries. Shawn, I’m trying my hardest to teach him how NOT to read. Despite my best attempts though, he’s starting to get it. I will now have to omit the words ‘he’, ‘egg’, ‘butterfly’ and ‘to’. He can read those.


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