Quick: name your favorite board game. What is it? Clue? Scrabble? God forbid you might have said Monopoly. Goodness, you are unimaginative. How about Wits and Wagers, Pop 5, or Eye Know instead? While some common, quintessential games like Trivial Pursuit or Sorry might line the shelves of households across America, you are more likely to find these buried underneath the many boxes of other obscure and unloved board games from the last decade at the Connor household. By my calculations, my family owns over 100 games varying from Catch Phrase to Cards Against Humanity and everything in between. I might add that this is no hyperbole.
There is a good reason for this. Family board game night is not just a tradition during the holidays for my family, it is practically a requirement to play if you want to be respected. If you are ever lucky enough to be my significant other, you better be prepared to roll some dice or answer pop-culture trivia with my family around Christmas; it is a right of initiation.
Though that last bit might have been a bit of an exaggeration, having your family grow up and move across the country in a short matter of time means that the orthodox family traditions you had as a kid become watered down or go out the window entirely. Decorating the tree was once a family affair, but now it is done two days after Thanksgiving in less than an hour because the entire family is unable to be there. We are incapable of going Christmas shopping together anymore because we all live in different cities, and we refuse to participate in Black Friday because we are not animals. Seeing as though we are not very religious either, my family does not go to Mass.
My point is that the one thing my family holds dear to our hearts is the short amount of time that we are able to cherish together during the holidays. We have long since decided to fill this time with a few rounds of whatever my Mother has managed to find in the bargain bin at Kmart. I, for one, could not be more grateful to surround myself with a group of hilarious and loving people, playing Balderdash while drinking Tom & Jerrys and making “that’s what she said” jokes.