We made it, it may have been by the skin of our teeth but we made it. It counts. Whew, what a year, I’m just glad to have survived it. Let’s refer to it going forward as “the year that shall not be named” Personally my year wasn’t terrible but collectively as a society, we took a massive L. I don’t even know what to anticipate from 2017. I can say, my first few days have proven favorable and fruitful. That’s a good sign. Actually, when i reflect back to last year I declared, to my friends, that everything was trash. True story, by January 8th, 2016 I had already had a bad year, who knew I was a soothe seer.
I finished the year in the company of family and good friends and there was a thread that ran through most of my holiday gatherings. Spades. I’ve been playing cards since I was a wee lass, and watching my family play cards before that. I can play most blackity black cards games including bid whist and tonk or is it tunk? Not sure but you know what I’m talking about. Anyhoo, it was a lot of spades playing going on and as I looked around at all the camaraderie the yelling the laughing the edges of arguments. How did a card game pull together generations of people? For instance, I had a small post-Christmas pre NYE gathering and someone brought a guest, they played spades, just like that a once stranger is now in the folds of friendship and love. It’s almost magical. Of course, in that same breath they could be on the verge of being beaten within an inch of their life if they renege or get set. Lord don’t get set.
That’s something else I realized, that the terms used aren’t bound by region. The name of a what a place calls a drink or a store or a shoe varies depending on where you are, but spades are spades and with the exception of deciding what is high (joker, joker, deuce,ace) or which joker is the big and which is the little (the big one is the big one but i have seen people call the one with the words the big one the rational being it says “guarantee” so it’s a guaranteed winner) but essentially you can go in anywhere and play this game that is great for all ages.
I don’t think there is any other game that bonds so deeply as a spades game. Another observation i made is it reveals some interesting couples dynamics. I was in a long-term relationship and we only played spades two or three times. (I don’t look back on that relationship too fondly) I have seen wives that wont play with husbands and husbands who don’t play with wives because they have let their romantic partner down too many times. We’ve all seen the impeccable plays from a beginner who haphazardly goes into a game a miraculously runs a boston on experienced players. Where did the term running a boston come from? I actually googled this and wouldn’t you know spades has its on Wikipedia page? Oh internet what a joy. I did find out what boston means but it didn’t give its origins.
Point being that despite last year being a white knuckle of a ride and the years in front of us look pretty patchy at best a $2.00 deck of cards can bring us all together…or start a fight, but bring us all together mostly.