Thursday, August 1, 2013

Words With Friends Friends

Words With Friends Friends

During my lifetime I have developed different categories of friends, as we all have. Like most people, I have family friends, social friends, work friends, organization friends, and neighborhood friends. There are inner circle friends—the ones on the wedding and special occasion celebration lists—and outer circle. They are people you like, but for a zillion reasons never you invited each other to dinner, but will send get well cards if needed.

During the last decade, I developed a totally new class of friends—social media friends. My Space was where I got my feet wet. On this site few folks used their real names for fear of the unknown. As my “friends” on this site fled to Facebook, our aliases were discarded. Clever folks found ways to circumvent the false names and eventually most of us “friended” each other on Facebook. These people became my core group of the newest category of friends, Facebook Friends. Not only did I have these fantastic literary friends to share with, but the best part of Facebook was allowing me to renew contact with relatives I otherwise would have lost touch with. Seeing their families as they grow, gives a new closeness that otherwise might never have developed. The highlight of my day is when my grandkids post pictures or are tagged in pictures. It gives Hubby and me the feeling that even though they are grown and miles away, we still actively share their lives.

About a year ago, Facebook introduced a new category of friends to me: Word With Friends friends. The scrabble-like game has become addicting. Even as I write this, I stop every few sentences because I am playing games with my Atlanta son and two of my friends. Luckily, none of us has a boss that can look over our shoulder.

Words With Friends has reunited me with a cousin’s ex, someone in a zillion years I would never even think of calling. (This cousin doesn’t read my blog, so cousin who does…it isn’t your ex J ) This gal is a Words With Friends “high scorer.” I’m getting there, but still have a bit to go. Anyway, I play Mah Jongg with another WWF high scorer. I handed her my cell phone—the one I bought so I could play WWF no matter where I am—and asked her to play against this person for me. She put in a 42 point word allowing me my first win. (But there have been others that I have won without cheating.)

I’ve also reconnected with friends from the past, some who were just acquaintances, others outer circle, but through this game, it seems like we were and still are BFF. What amazes me the most about this game is people who have no time to make phone calls, spend all night playing. I even sent an instant message to one friend during a game who I haven’t spoken with in months. “Time for a chat?” I wrote.

“Too busy,” she replied.

Facebook, which shows who is connected, showed me that this friend didn’t turn her lights out for hours. Communicating for her, like other loved ones, is best done by playing the game.

Last week it rained all Sunday, both here and I think Atlanta. For one hour back and forth I played WWF with my son, just as we once did on rainy days when he was a child—only then I had to pretend I “goofed” so he would win. Now when I win, I think he is pretending he didn’t see he opened a triple-word score for me.

Words With Friends has answered the question that has perplexed me about the younger generation since texting became the rage. How can we communicate without communication? (I know this is from Flower Drum Song) It’s a common complaint my generation has about the “texting generation.”  But now I know how—start a WWF game. When the player responds, you know he or she is alive and well. If not, if they are friends who have crossed over the border to phone friends, you can call and inquire about their health. Otherwise, assume the obvious—they played too well for you or you to well for them.

I would make a dinner party for all my WWF friends, but I’m not sure we would have much of a conversation now that we spend hours each night communicating with mainly two or three letter words, some even ending in “q.”


No comments: