Chess — is it everything?
Growing up I watched a lot of movies and T.V shows, especially ones with a narrative to foil a ‘bad’ guy’s plan; where almost EVERY time the good guy’s won, boo; however these characters are connected by the shared mantra of going through life like “it’s a game of chess…” (I know you’ve all heard this before) this ideal is also encouraged in many other parts of pop’ culture taking music for example.
Lauryn Hill, past member of Grammy winning group ‘The Fugees’ said “I play my enemies like a game of chess” in their hit single ‘Ready or Not’ possibly pushing the agenda further into the mainstream as when things are popular they are rarely questioned for their validity and after some thought I have to say that this phrase is wrong.
“I play my enemies like a game of chess; where I rest, no stress, if you don’t smoke sess, Lest I must confess, my destiny’s manifest” — Ready or Not, The Fugees
In my many years of life I have developed the tendency to view life as a game where everyone plays a part; I regularly notice patterns in people that cause them to behave which, in my mind, appear as repetitive and recognisable acts. This allows me to predict their behaviour and even perceive their base intent in a matter of moments.
INTJ(Prounced:Eye-En-Tee-Jay) ‘The Architect’ (sounds corny I know) this being my Myers Briggs – Personality type its the norm for me to go out and understand what I don’t understand so, after taking the test I took some time out to research on what the 16 personalities are and particularly what the INTJ type stands for. It appears I am often pigeonholed to the convention of manoeuvring through life like it is a game of chess; I disagree, I can understand the analogy but personally I think times have changed – in all honesty… I only really learnt how to play the game a year ago simply because I wanted to know what the fuss was about.
I do enjoy the slow tactical approach to the game & I appreciate some of the things it teaches such as:
- Fluidity — It is okay to make mistakes just as long as you can recover; don’t threat, adjust and continue.
- Be precise — Make sure every decision you make isn’t whimsical but well thought out
- Spot patterns — There are often clearly defined lines of success that work well. Learn to see these when they repeat, and take advantage of them.
However being a millennial, this got boring fast, perhaps that’s a by-product of my age and living in a generation with fast paced games available; with that said, I feel that life has evolved into a game much faster than chess.
The game of chess depicts a medieval concept of society where each player are on a level playing field where the aim is to see who can get the upper hand on the other when that’s not the case in today’s world; we are not given the same amount of pieces that carry same value life is more random, life is more of an ongoing poker game. We are dealt a hand and must play to the best of our abilities using our own skills of deduction, reading others, and ‘BS’ing’ through a hand to win the jackpot. Many variables are always at play and we must discern our way through each round.
There are times you have no choice but to fold, and other times you are forced to hold; sometimes you win and sometimes you lose, but with practice, you become better and better therefore are able to increase your chances of winning and decrease the chances of losing; it’s a mix of both calculating our odds and brandishing the art of ‘finesse’ with the hand you’ve been dealt.
So, who’s interested in a game of Poker?