You Totally Messed Up: Don’t Panic.

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I’ll admit to you something that I’m not particularly ashamed to say: I like computer gaming. I mean, as a writer, it’s a great way to completely avoid writing while looking like I’m still busy on the computer. Furthermore, I was generally afraid of the sun in my youth.

I’ve moved pretty far away from the gaming life these days (what will all that polo and all), but I do remember a good lesson from it that I’ve been able to carry over into the rest of my life: don’t give up too early, cause it makes you annoying.

Here’s the thing: when I played certain games–mostly  war games, I’d say–there’d always be a few players who would give up as soon as 1 thing went wrong. They would lose a location point or some such, and then (in appropriate L33t sp3ak) indicate that there was no point to playing the game anymore, as everything was lost.

That drove me nuts. I mean, we’re playing a game for God’s sake: just have fun! But inevitably the players who were just too good to be bothered with playing left the game (and summarily left me and a few others to try to scrounge up a good match from the ashes).

And I get just as frustrated these days in bike polo, though I don’t get the opportunity as often to rage out like this fellow here:

but I feel that rage deep inside. A player will find themselves down something like two points and just surrender the game–or even worse, they’ll make a tiny blunder costing a goal and it’s obvious that they’ve already given up.

Let’s just take a moment here to recognize how dumb that is.

The worst thing you can do–worse than putting your foot down in goal just before a breakaway where the opposing player shoots as-easy-as-he-likes on your goal–is letting that mess-up dictate the rest of the game.

don't panicI know it’s frustrating, dear reader. I know you’re a better player than all that. But the truth is you’re making that mistake worse by carrying it with you–and you can make it even…worser…by letting your won self-pity and rage dictate how you interact with your team mates.

So Don’t Panic. Let yourself have at least, minimum, 1 trillion allowances for mistakes when you play a polo chukka. And while you’re at it, allow that from your team mates, too. Don’t let yourself carry the weight of your last mistake around with you, cause that makes you pretty much useless to everyone around you.

There. Glad we had this talk today.


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  1. Jeff from Winston Salem says:

    Here here! As the biggest computer gamer in polo I agree wholeheartedly.

    When things are going bad I look to do something exceptional and crazy. Take the crazy shot or reach just a little further for the steal. You wont be disappointed if you make it happen and if you fail you had the guts to try something wacky.

    Crusher, what games did you play? RTS?

    • Crusher says:

      RTS indeed. Command and Conquer when I was younger, and then anything I could get my hands on until I picked up this little sport. Now I watch my nephew play hours of Minecraft while I try to read.

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