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Hey! There's a GeekList about that!

September 25, 2007

Have you ever been mid-conversation when you blurt out (or if you have more restraint than me, have the urge to blurt out), "Hey! There's a GeekList about that!"? Perhaps it's one of the many signs of spending too much time on BoardGameGeek (along with excelling at all of these contests), but I have to admit it happens to me on a regular basis... and I'm beginning to wonder who else this happens to or has happened to, and in particular, am looking for examples (and links to the GeekList if you can find it).

The most recent time was when I was teaching Notre Dame to few friends. After explaining that you started with 2 "money" and used 1 "money" to bribe a person each turn or could use your "money" to place cubes on the cathedral, I got the strangest question. They were like, "Money? But what's it actually called in the game?" I stopped to think for a second and realized I had no idea. So we stopped the explanation for a while to check the rulebook and discovered that the currency was in fact gold coins. Upon this somewhat anticlimactic discovery, I had the insuppressible urge to shout out, you guessed it, "Hey! There's a GeekList about that!"

Well of course there is silly, many in fact I would imagine. I mean there's Escudos, Florins, Denars, Dirhams, Ducats, Rubles, Shillings, Talers, Elektros, Doubloons... and the list goes on and on of course. One good list on this subject is Dave VanderArk's Currency Names. After encountering so many interesting currencies in so many different games, I was a little disappointed in the currency's name in Notre Dame, but then again it's the mechanics that draw me to the game, so I won't hold it against the game.

Anyway, back to my inane story. Everyone looked at me like I was somewhat crazy for shouting out about a GeekList in the middle of otherwise polite conversation, but I couldn't help myself. It was a relevant reference and had to be inserted, right? Back me up here.

Since I couldn't very well start a post with only one instance in mind, I'll bore with you with another, tangentially related, story.

After embarrassing myself while teaching Notre Dame, I was reminded of a remarkably similar incident a few months ago when I was teaching Bridges of Shangri-La to different friends. Now before I go any further, I assume and hope that many of you already know exactly where this is going. However, for those of you who haven't played or heard about Bridges of Shangri-La, or somehow missed its extraordinary starting condition when reading the rules, I will enlighten you. The player who gets to go first in Bridges (as with In the Shadow of the Emperor, the title is too unwieldy, don't you think?) is the person who "has last reached the peak of Mount Everest using nothing but blue and white checkered stilts carved from the wood of a Mammoth tree ... In the case of a tie, the wisest player of the group begins the game." Now, who on Earth can read this without immediately wanting to exclaim "Hey! There's a GeekList about that!"?

From the hungriest player, to the shortest player, to the player who most recently went swimming, to the player with the longest hair, to the player who looks most like a pirate, to the player who can go the longest without laughing, and so on, of course there's a GeekList about this ever so fascinating subject! For example, see Michel Fortin's Best Starting Player Rules and Johan Pettersson's The quest of the first player.

Anyway, as I was teaching Bridges of Shangri-La a couple months ago, of course I couldn't help but mention that obviously I got to go first since not only was I the wisest but I was also the only one to scale Mount Everest with the proper stilts... and then, of course, I couldn't help but append the phrase that inspired this post to the end of my outlandish claim, "Hey! There's a GeekList about that!" And once again, everyone rolled their eyes and wondered exactly how many hours I do waste on the home away from home that is BoardGameGeek, subconsciously memorizing all of the past GeekList subjects.

Tell me I'm not alone, and share your stories of when you blurted out "Hey! There's a GeekList about that!"

(See this Forum Thread for this article plus additional comments on it)