“I’m not certain that ‘glute’ is a word. Isn’t that slang?” I took a sip of my lukewarm coffee.
He shrugged his shoulders and took advantage of the fact that we didn’t have a dictionary nearby. I let him take it, even though it was a double word score — yikes.
I fingered my remaining letters, trying to find a place on the board to spell something, anything, to get rid of as many letters as possible so I could have a decent chance of grabbing a ‘t’ out of the bag. There were only a few letters left, and two had to be ‘t’s — and one of those would allow me to snatch that one-letter-down, triple-word-score, thirty-five-point, once-in-a-game opportunity. I just might win the game. For the first time in our married life, I just might beat Bryan at Scrabble.
I bumbled out a lame word. ‘Bun’ or something like it. We quibbled lightly over something having to do with my placement. Then he did it. He LAID. DOWN. THAT. ‘T’.
“Whhaaaaaaaat????!!!!” I protested. “You stole it!”
He laughed and leaned forward, triumph sparkling in his blue eyes. “I just picked out both of those ‘t’s,” he smiled.
“I gave you that not-a-word slang word, and it let you win the game!” I was pouting. I was upset in the sort-of-but-not-really kind of way. I had wanted that ‘t’ baaaaaad.
“I haven’t won yet,” he said.
“But you’re gonna,” I retorted, frowning. Maybe I was a little more upset than I thought I was.
“I’m not a mean player,” he said, becoming a little serious. “I’m actually pretty gracious when we play games with people — why do you always assume I’m going to be so cut-throat?”
I reminded him. He loves to beat me at games. He doesn’t like it when I win, and he’s said so. He confessed it one time, a little ashamed that he felt that way, and I haven’t really let him forget that confession. I mentioned something about his desire to see my defeat. I apologized for holding onto that one exchange, as silly as it may seem to hold grudges over things that happen in game playing. I told him I would henceforth attempt to think better of him, and remember that he wants to be kind and gracious while playing games, and not treat him as if his first instinct is to take me down without mercy. He accepted my apology and we moved forward to finish the game, which he won.
As he was writing down the final score, I peeked over to see what the damage was. He’d beaten me by 30-something. His score was written under the letter ‘f’, and mine under the letter ‘e’. Strange, since our names were Bryan and Jamie.
“What do ‘f’ and ‘e’ stand for?” I asked.
He glanced down at the paper and smiled an ‘uh-oh’ smile.
“Ummm… they stand for ‘friend’ and ‘enemy’,” he confessed, starting to laugh.
“That might be why I feel like you’re cut throat!” I laughed as I playfully hit his shoulder. The Japanese ladies in the corner watched us as we mused over his blunder.
Later, as we paid the shopkeeper for our coffee and homemade scones, she smiled at us and said, “Looked like you had fun time.”
“Because I won!” Bryan added quickly.
“Yes..,” I said as I smiled. “He always wins.”