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Subject: Absurd moment... rss

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Mel
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So... I'm in my gaming room eagerly setting up a new game I want try out. Suddenly it hits me, the absurdity of it all. I chuckled to myself of the thought, and leaned back in my chair. I looked at all those games and pondered the thought for a moment or two. Does it ever occur to you just how absurd it is that we enjoy pushing pieces of cardboard and plastic around? Are we nuts? How about those solo gamers out there? It's just us and the dust bunnies playing in a pile of cardboard and plastic. Helllllo!

Then I leaned forward, kicked a dusty bunny out of the way, and began pushing pieces around again. It's really pretty cool that we can do this in a joyful way, and the fact that we like other people's "ideas" put together from materials.
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bort
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Hey, you might be just pushing pieces of cardboard and plastic around....

I'm invading star systems, or trading between countries, or building up my civilisation, or protecting a village from invading ghosts, or....well - you get the idea.

;-)
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Sunburst
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Haha, yes, I have thought that a few times, but you know what? There are other people (usually) around you doing the same thing! I think it's fun and worthwhile, because of the social interactions that are taking place while doing so
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CARL SKUTSCH
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Yeah, it's pretty silly.

I prefer the real world where we push pieces of paper and plastic around, trading it back and forth, hoping to have the most paper at the end of the "game" because somehow the little pieces of paper are supposed to make us happy. More paper better!!!
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Jerry Martin
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I think if you take anything and break it down to the parts it all seems pretty silly.

Reading a book is really just staring at pieces of chopped up wood with ink on them. But it is more than that and so is gaming.

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bort
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sunburst wrote:
because of the social interactions that are taking place while doing so


Yup, this is the payoff for me too
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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bortmonkey wrote:
sunburst wrote:
because of the social interactions that are taking place while doing so


Yup, this is the payoff for me too

Even if you're playing solo, it beats watching TV. Exercising your mind is a good thing.
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Bruce Gazdecki
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I don't usually feel absurd playing the games, I usually feel absurd looking at all the games I own and asking myself why I have so many.

Usually helps me purge a few, which then turns into getting twice as many as I got rid of.

I have AD, and apparently I like it...
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Jason Farris
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I like to think of it as higher primate stuff. Manipulating objects for the joy of manipulating them.

It also hits me when I am playing a game with limited theme. I enjoy the abstract puzzle but there is no way you can convince me that poker chips are gems and cards represent the entire gem market from mining to sales (Splendor).
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Curt Carpenter
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Fribian wrote:
Does it ever occur to you just how absurd it is that we enjoy pushing pieces of cardboard and plastic around? Are we nuts? How about those solo gamers out there?

I've heard of people who spend many hours/days/weeks/months/years hitting a little ball with sticks into holes from a far distance. Over. And over. Now that seems absurd.
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Sicaria Occaeco
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So nobody else is concerned about the OP kicking bunnies? shake
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Kyle
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I'd say with this'revelation' it is not us that are nuts. I see nothing absurd at all. I also drive around in a metal cafe powered by exploding dinosaurs about 3'from my crotch. I control the rate of explosion with a foot!
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Pup Selchen
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I guess it's about as absurd/crazy as staring at dry ink on very, very thin wood, thoughtlessly turning pages for hours and hours.

It's about observation: Everything that we cannot observe seems strange, wondrous, absurd or crazy. And everything happening exclusively in our minds is not observable.
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I've had those moments but also with work....

You just look around and think - what am I doing?

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Bart R.
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I'm halfway through punching and setting up the games I got from Essen and I am already dreading the moment when I'm done with the last box. Good thing I have at least three more games in the mail as we speak. Yes, it's absurd, but so is the rest of my life cool
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Russ Williams
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Fribian wrote:
Does it ever occur to you just how absurd it is that we enjoy pushing pieces of cardboard and plastic around? Are we nuts?

To tell us this, you were pressing pieces of plastic with your fingers, causing a string of ASCII symbols to be displayed on an electronic surface, and then sent in invisible packets to other electronic boxes scattered around the world. Are you nuts?

Soon I shall nourish my body by opening a hole on the front of the top of my body and placing small objects into the hole. I will grind them with tiny hard white things, while covering them in a clear liquid, then use a flesh flap and some muscles in a tube to push them further down into a sack with acid. Am I nuts?

Yeah, pretty much any activity can be reduced to absurdity.
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Chris
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Whether your an 18xx nut, sitting there in your pin striped suit with your logarithm and speaking slide rule or the most extreme ameritrash dice fest junkie half way through your 3rd plate of sliders, there's no one whos main objective of a game is to literally manipulate inert physical objects, it's always about what they represent, as as with the book image above, it's a daft part of the bigger picture to hone in on.
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Jason Farris
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TheRocketSurgeon wrote:
Whether your an 18xx nut, sitting there in your pin striped suit with your logarithm and speaking slide rule or the most extreme ameritrash dice fest junkie half way through your 3rd plate of sliders, there's no one whos main objective of a game is to literally manipulate inert physical objects, it's always about what they represent, as as with the book image above, it's a daft part of the bigger picture to hone in on.


While I agree with you to an extent we do get great joy from moving stuff around. Otherwise we would not need bits to our games, let alone cool ones. Why do we like bakelite over plastic. Because it feels good and things clack.
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Chris
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Smilinbrax wrote:
TheRocketSurgeon wrote:
Whether your an 18xx nut, sitting there in your pin striped suit with your logarithm and speaking slide rule or the most extreme ameritrash dice fest junkie half way through your 3rd plate of sliders, there's no one whos main objective of a game is to literally manipulate inert physical objects, it's always about what they represent, as as with the book image above, it's a daft part of the bigger picture to hone in on.


While I agree with you to an extent we do get great joy from moving stuff around. Otherwise we would not need bits to our games, let alone cool ones. Why do we like bakelite over plastic. Because it feels good and things clack.

Yes, but that transcends gaming entirely. I'm replacing doors in my house, and some of the smooth actions on the new handles... oh momma!
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CARL SKUTSCH
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TheRocketSurgeon wrote:

Yes, but that transcends gaming entirely. I'm replacing doors in my house, and some of the smooth actions on the new handles... oh momma!

Sir, please! Women and children might read this!
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Bryan Thunkd
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skutsch wrote:
TheRocketSurgeon wrote:

Yes, but that transcends gaming entirely. I'm replacing doors in my house, and some of the smooth actions on the new handles... oh momma!

Sir, please! Women and children might read this!
Oh come on, let the man crow about all the smooth action his knob is getting.
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Chris Laudermilk
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laugh This thread is SO well timed for today's XKCD!

http://xkcd.com/1593/

Yes, I have had that "what am I doing?" moment with games. Then I get over it & keep playing. Like Kyle, I also fling myself around in circles propelled by exploding dinosaurs; then do it over & over trying to get back to the same place as I started faster than last time. Heck, even Carl's example has gotten more absurd in the last couple of decades--now we aren't even chasing physical pieces of metal and paper, it's just bits of electrical charges that can all go poof in an instant. At least with boardgames, I got that little chunk of chewed up, ink-soaked tree or bit of plastic moved from one place to another on the table.
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McDog
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Fribian wrote:
whistle surprise shake laugh kiss


So... I'm in my gaming room eagerly setting up a new game I want try out. Suddenly it hits me, the absurdity of it all. I chuckled to myself of the thought, and leaned back in my chair. I looked at all those games and pondered the thought for a moment or two. Does it ever occur to you just how absurd it is that we enjoy pushing pieces of cardboard and plastic around? Are we nuts? How about those solo gamers out there? It's just us and the dust bunnies playing in a pile of cardboard and plastic. Helllllo!

Then I leaned forward, kicked a dusty bunny out of the way, and began pushing pieces around again. It's really pretty cool that we can do this in a joyful way, and the fact that we like other people's "ideas" put together from materials.



Those guys are indeed nuts.
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Kevin Garnica
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Fribian wrote:
whistle surprise shake laugh kiss


So... I'm in my gaming room eagerly setting up a new game I want try out. Suddenly it hits me, the absurdity of it all. I chuckled to myself of the thought, and leaned back in my chair. I looked at all those games and pondered the thought for a moment or two. Does it ever occur to you just how absurd it is that we enjoy pushing pieces of cardboard and plastic around? Are we nuts? How about those solo gamers out there? It's just us and the dust bunnies playing in a pile of cardboard and plastic. Helllllo!

Then I leaned forward, kicked a dusty bunny out of the way, and began pushing pieces around again. It's really pretty cool that we can do this in a joyful way, and the fact that we like other people's "ideas" put together from materials.


I'm a pianist (for a living). When I was a younger boy, my piano instructor told me once that - when I play - I am literally just pressing/tapping segments of ivory and wood repeatedly, over & over & over & over. If it were not for the sonorous sounds coming out of the instrument, our fingers would probably bleed. It's the music that "distracts" us from the absurdity of what we are actually doing.

That pretty much blew my mind. Since then, I have become aware of the absurdities that some of us enjoy in our spare time. Manipulating cardboard and wooden bits seems like one of the more innocuous options.

To answer your question, no, I don't really think about it. But only because, on some level, I'm already aware of it. I have been thinking of these sorts of things for a long time now.
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Erich Braden
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Think about the absurdity of what we call, or try to call, normal life. We spend hours at a job doing whatever it is we do, to only acquire some form of money. But the minute you get this money, half of it goes to the government and then the rest goes to you in some form of paper/plastic. Then you push that money to feed yourself, feed your family, provide shelter, feed your addiction to games. And you do this, every day.

That is absurd! I'd love for the day to come when we get back to the bartering system. Perhaps then it would all then be meaningful.
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