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Subject: Game Hiding, Option 5 -- "Friend's" House rss

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Man thinks, the river flows.
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“Friend's” House
    I suppose this one goes without saying. Simple to implement, and of course there’s simply unlimited capacity if you keep in mind that multiple friends can be brought into the mix. But, if you think this strategy through you’ll quickly realize that it’s fraught with peril.

Pros:
1. space Space SPACE!
2. Storage is in a safe, climate controlled area.
3. Access requires a drive, but once you’re there you can spend all the time you like selecting your games.
Cons:
1. Sometimes friends fight.
2. Your friend may have a spouse as well – a wildcard in the equation that could be trouble.
3. Not the best idea if you friend is a “cola spiller,” “meeple chewer,” or “chit tapper.”
4. Games may be damaged or incorrectly repackaged if “loaned” to friends of your friend’s spouse.
5. Older out-of-print games that carry extra value may wind up on ebay if times get tough.
6. If many games are in the mix it is possible to become confused regarding who owns what.

    If you’re thinking of just leaving the games at your friend’s house on the shelf, you haven’t fully considered the list of potential drawbacks above. In particular the addition of a friend’s spouse risks an additional layer of “too many games” anger that is well outside of your control. When taken as a group, the list of cons makes this strategy a loser for anything but a very small number of games and for only a short period of time. At best a stopgap effort.

   Instead I recommend a far more nuanced, more complicated approach that will use misdirection and confusion to keep everyone involved incapable of taking an action that could result in the discovery of your stash or the inadvertent loss of games from it, and virtually assure that your friend’s spouse will not approach yours to complain or compare notes. Remarkably, this strategy doesn’t use your friend’s house at all – the mere existence of their house is sufficient to throw your spouse off the scent while all of your games sit in your very own game room, safe and within your control.

    This strategy is best used simultaneously by a group of your friends. Each person in your group (this game works much better with three or more and I think four is the sweet spot) is “borrowing” some of his friend’s games, to see if he likes them or not.

    “No honey, I probably won’t get to play it, but Bob said I could borrow it. I’m such a geek I like to read the rules. I figured I’d just pull the rules out and leave the game there, but Bob didn’t want me to separate the two – he’s funny that way.”

    In reality all those games that you have “borrowed” from Bob, and Chris, and Jeff, are your very own games that you keep on your shelves, scrambled up a bit each week so that it is not immediately apparent to a casual observer that the inventory doesn’t change.

    “Let’s face it – it makes no sense to own the same games your friends do, and you can save money buying only one copy of each and then borrowing back and forth.”

    Sound money-smart? It does, which is exactly why your spouse will believe it.

    But we haven’t taken this to its highest level. What remains is the most important part of this entire strategy. You need to have my friend Steve play in your group too, and you can! Steve is a consultant who travels a lot for his job, makes tons of money doing it and spends all of it on new games. The beauty of Steve is that he is willing to lend out his games, is frequently gone for weeks at a time, and is a complete pain-in-the-neck to get a hold of when he’s on the road. You always end up getting forwarded to his voice mail and have to leave a message. In the meantime you’re stuck sitting on all the games he’s loaned you until he gets back to you.

    If you haven’t caught on yet, “Steve” lives in your town too, and is more than willing to let YOU borrow a whole bunch of his games and then leave town. The phone number for “Steve” is just a SkypeIn number that you and your buddies split the fee on. It has a nice big voice mailbox to accept any phone call attempts that a suspecting spouse may make to him. “Steve” is your swing producer – since he has a library of 200+ games it’s completely reasonable for you to have fifteen or twenty of them at your house that you just can’t get back to him.

    What remains is an occasional shuffling of a few junker games between you and your real flesh and blood friends to change the look and keep everyone off the scent.
 
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Jeff Khoury
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I find the best method of getting games into the house is the direct one. There's so little space left in my library, and my wife is ussually the only one with enough nerve to clean it every once in a while, that there's NO WAY I'd be able to decieve her of its true contents for long. She also has the unfortunate quality of paying attention to what I like and dislike, my hobbies in general, she's even taken an interest in playing several of my games (Arkham Horror especially). I'm not complaining about any of that - I consider myself lucky that we can play some of these games together, however, it does make game hiding strategies ineffectual.

Imstead, I prefer a more aggressive defense. My wife loves a wide variey of wines, and it's not unheard of for her to drop $50 or more on a purchase, or $100 plus on DVDS! So, I tell her we both have addictions (my father-in-law, who likes to bet on dog races, calls this "The Entertainment Dollar")- I'll stop buying games when she stops buying wine and movies. She understands that we both drop $ on our hobbies and that's OK.

This strategy works well if your wife, smokes, drinks, collects DVDs, enjoys expensive vacations, buys tons of clothes/jewelry, likes to eat at fancy restaurants all of the time or go out for nights on the town, or any other activity/hobby that costs some $. The idea is not to hide your hobby from your wife, but rationalize it by pointing out that she spends money frivolously too. Trust me, if you can structure the debate in an adult way, and reach a compromise on your combined spending, you'll be allright. (Neither one of us spend as much $ on our hobbies as we'd like to get away with)

All of that being said, I've recently found that BGG trades are a lifesaver. I've had 3 trades in the past month that I've turned into about 6 or 7 games. "This game honey? Oh, it's from that trade last week." I like to make a production of the whole trade, packing, and shipping. Ask her to help me find a box, where's the packing tape, then leave the box sitting on the kitchen table for an extra day. I also like to talk about how that game I picked up for next to nothing is now out of print and I'm getting TWO or THREE games for it, what a deal!
 
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Man thinks, the river flows.
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    My wife is a quilter. She spends $6 at a time, two or three times a week.

             Sag.


 
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Mark Cole
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Sag- There is no way your wife is a quilter and only spends $6 at a whack. My wife is a quilter. The living room at our house has been her sewing room for about 6 years now (TG for the finished basement).I keep telling her she ought to open up a branch of JoAnn fabric with all the "stuff" she has collected/bought and not used .... I feel your pain

Myassis
 
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Shellie Rose
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I'm the "friend" who stores stuff for people. It's good for me because I get lots of games to play. I find that the biggest danger is that people forget that I have their stuff. I also forget whose games are whose. I've been thinking of making a Geeklist called "How did this get here, and who does it belong to, and do you have any intention of ever claiming it?"

If you are storing a game at a friends house, stick a sheet of paper in it with your name on it.


P.S. I'm enjoying the series. I don't know which is funnier, Steve the imaginary friend, or the new red towel at the bottom of the laundry basket.


 
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Teacher Fletcher
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In all honesty, reading these types of threads on BGG has been instrumental in reinforcing my decision to never get married.
 
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Louise Holden
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My spouse pointed out that he uses a variation of this; "Oh those aren't NEW games "(or in his case figures). "I lent them to X years ago and he's just returned them."
 
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Jim Carvin
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louiseh wrote:
My spouse pointed out that he uses a variation of this; "Oh those aren't NEW games "(or in his case figures). "I lent them to X years ago and he's just returned them."


How about, "Oh, I just borrowed those from X the other day" or "I just got those from the latest math trade on the geek."
 
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Bathtub Hoax wrote:
In all honesty, reading these types of threads on BGG has been instrumental in reinforcing my decision to never get married.

I could write a long post on the benefits of marriage and the wonder of children, but I'll be short and instead just say - Not every marriage is like that. Many of us do not have to hide our game purchases. Nor is getting away for a weekly game session an issue. Some folks even have a spouse who shares their love for gaming. (Not me, but the missus and I share other interests.) So marriage might not be for you, but don't take these threads too seriously.
 
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