Oregon's been on lockdown since mid-March, so like many people in similar situations, I'm getting a little squirrelly. I guess I didn't realize how much I'd miss things like eating out or taking a day trip for a hike until they were suddenly gone for weeks on end. One of the things I miss the most is my friends' monthly game night. My friends all lead pretty busy lives, so it's nice to spend a Friday evening catching up with them and then fighting against each other for temporarily bragging rights. I suppose you can replicate this online, but it's just not the same as in person.
What I really love about games is that they span a wide variety of interests and appeal to all ages. One of my earliest memories is watching my grandfather at the dining room table, shuffling a deck of cards so worn you couldn't read all of the numbers. A farmer by trade, he'd play a ridiculously difficult version of solitaire and rarely win. If he thought a grandkid was watching, though, he'd make a big show of cheating, only to laugh when we "caught him." He used that same old deck to teach me how to play gin rummy. If I could go back in time, playing a hand with him would be high on my to-do list.
So whenever visiting restrictions are eased, I'm going to host a board game night. I'll settle for anything: the party games where it's more about making everyone else laugh than winning, the epic RPG dungeon games that usually hinge on the last big fight, or the strategy games where my much more cunning friends inevitably have better long-term plans than I do. I won't care if I get completely owned as long as I get to spend some time with people I care about.