March 09, 2008

Scrabble is Talking to Me

My Scrabble board is talking to me, and I have proof of sorts. Now I know, this is a little like that "Beautiful Mind" thing where the fella, as I recall, was seeing messages in everything. I'm aware of the lunacy. I really am. But at this stage of my lunacy, at least I'm thinking it a fun coincidence.

The other day, I was speaking with a fellow Scrabble lover, and answered his question. He asked me, "The other day, you said you spend the weekend with your boys. Do you have sons, or are you, like, spending time with the boyz." I told him I have two sons.

The funny thing is that, when I got home later and played some Scrabble on my computer, the following showed up on my rack during the game. Now, this is only proof of sorts, because you have to believe that I didn't rearrange the tiles for this message. You'll see in a later image that I'm honest about the way the tiles show up. Anyway, here's what showed up on the rack:

Now, why this is EXTRA interesting is that, several weeks before (as memory of the timeline serves), my wife and I had a detailed conversation about something, and when I came down that night to play, my opening rack -- unaltered -- gave an explicit commentary on our conversation. It was so amazing that I called her to the board right away, and neither of us could believe it.

I also did a screen capture on that board, but alas, didn't take it immediately into Photoshop, and before I pasted the image anywhere, I forgot about it and screen captured something else. So I lost it.

At least, though, the board didn't stop talking. Just yesterday I was playing and the board came up with this:

This was interesting enough that I went to Google news to look up Beirut. The lastest news was that Beirut was claiming that 2 Israeli war jets had invaded their air space the day before. It seems like things like this are happening all the time in the Middle East, so I'm still chalking this one up to fun or quirky. If the board is trying to make some sort of worldly prediction, hopefully it's about something like Beirut peace talks that revolutionize our world.

Or something like that.

Anyway, today I'm playing again, and the board has another message. Ok, this one is more garbled, but this is where you can see I'm honest about the order that the letters are showing up in. Now, you can believe me or not, but the message really has nothing to do with me, and I'll continue with my optimism that no negative predictions are being made. Here's what the rack read:

For those who don't automatically rearrange such things in their heads, the "Rx" at the end hints to the mention of a prescription. In this case, of course, Viagra.

So again I was off to Google to check out Viagra in the news, only to find that this month is the 10th anniversary for Viagra. How about that! Almost makes you wonder if the board isn't trying anything fancy -- just check to see if I'm looking.

Next come the important predictions via Scrabble. Watch out Nostradamus!

March 03, 2008

Never Assume

Just a great example why you can never assume you've won. Maven played DRIZZLES for 131 points to end the game.

January 06, 2008

It's a Gift to be Simple

This is just a good anecdote for why we like to keep certain letters on our racks when trying to build a Bingo (but not at the expense of other good turns, of course). These are low-point letters specifically because they can be used in so many ways, especially with one another.

The letters usually saved up are RETAINS (a good way to remember them), and of course the Blank tile. Today I was able to keep most of those on my rack and knew I could land a Bingo. Then Maven played JOT, which suddenly opened the possibility of playing my Bingo (STEAMING) on two Triple-Letter tiles in one turn:

Now, this turn yielded 140 points, but the total POSSIBLE was 152. This is because the M could've been played one tile higher, which is a Double-Letter tile. Can you find what better word I could have used?
(NOTE: This screen shot was taken after the game was finished, which is why AH shows up alongside STEAMING.)

Another Word-Merge Bingo

A few games after my last post's game, I ran into a similar situation where I had a Bingo that I wanted to play and Maven got in the way. Maven played ALIT next to the Triple Word on the right side. Now, my Scrabble vocab isn't impeccable, and it's possible I could've played an ING word off the G in the center/top of the board. But once again, I was able to play where I originally planned because my letters merged perfectly with Maven's ALIT. So Maven unwittingly added points to my turn.

Do you see the ING word I might've used in the top/center? If so, leave a comment here with what else could've been done.

Never Give Up on that Bingo

The other day I had collected the right tiles for a Bingo, but Maven played EPITOME (for its own Bingo) in the only available spot.

I checked the whole board and, in the very end, realized that there was only one chance to still play a Bingo -- I had to merge letters from my Bingo with letters from Maven's. Here's what I eventually came up with (if you'll pardon the poor screen capture):

Lesson learned: when you think all is lost, it might not be. Try to break out from your box and see possibilities you thought weren't there!

August 13, 2006

Scrabble Rear Handed to Me

I recently created a new profile for playing Scrabble against the computer, and started playing against a 1400 ranking. After that, I always play the computer set at the lowest ranking possible ABOVE MINE. Since the computer goes in increments of 50, if I have a 1437 ranking, I play against 1450.

Well, that first game I made the "error" of scoring nearly 500 points, and was ranked accordingly -- somewhere above 2000. So I had to play the computer at its highest ability, and had 3 games in a row where my Scrabble rear was just handed to me ... until my ranking finally fell low enough that I was playing against a 1600 and beat up on it. So now the new profile is 2-3.

And now, for my Scrabble word of the day, which could probably never be played because it's too long, but it's just a GREAT word for word lovers to know:

borborygmus: the rumbling sound your stomach makes "when you're hungry" (actually when gasses are moving around in there).

July 19, 2006

Fixing My Blog -- FIX Words

Well, someone flattered me by asking why this blog was inactive and including a frown face with the message. So it inspired me to try posting again. As always, it's a matter of priorities, and these days, I have spent my free writing time developing my new blog to encourage completion of my novel: Ol' Steve's Blog.

Check it out if you like sci-fi and want a chance at some nifty prizes in time.

Anyway, in honor of fixing up my blog here, a few of the "FIX" words you can use in your next Scrabble game:

FIXIT (you know ... the fixit man)