Chess, a metaphor for life …

While I was in Asia, I played a lot of chess on my mobile phone. I used one of those free apps from the Google Play Store, and played against the computer.

I’ve played chess for fun, on an occasional basis, ever since my father taught me the game as a child. Still, though, after many decades, I’m no good at it. Nevertheless, growing up in the gaming culture of Las Vegas, I love games. I especially love strategy games because they are exercise for the mind; they make you think in different ways and outside the box. Consequently, I intend to play chess with increased frequency, because I learn so much each time I play.

To me, chess is like life. At times, you are attacked from all angles and just can’t catch a break. At other (perhaps rare) times, you hit your stride and feel like you’re conquering your kingdom. Some games are quick, while others go on for what seems like an eternity. Sometimes you win; sometimes you lose.

One thing I learn from playing chess is that I often miss a lot (that pesky pawn poised to capture one of my higher-ranking pieces). That is, I don’t always see what’s staring me right in the face. At the very least, I sometimes miss what may not be necessarily obvious, but nonetheless is in plain sight (that bothersome bishop or rogue rook about to capture my queen). As in life, many things, good or bad, are hidden in plain sight—evil’s favorite hiding place.

By the way, if you’ve been following my short-lived blog, did you catch that I’m no longer in Asia? That’s right! I’m back in the States and spent Thanksgiving with my family. While in Asia, I “hackschooled” or “unschooled” my son—and here’s a look at his middle school transcript derived from that time. Now that we’re back, I’ve become an “accidental” homeschooler (which will be the topic of a future post).

I had a wonderfully enriching experience in Asia, but as Dorothy famously said:

There’s no place like home.”


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