SCRABBLE and Economic Inequality

SCRABBLE can be a harsh word game. You can end up with a rack of all vowels, no consonants; a rack of all consonants, no vowels; a rack with what I call dead-end letters — ‘C’ and ‘V’ — they don’t pair with other letters to make any 2-letter words which are crucial on a tight board.  Without the right companion letters, C & V are the boat-anchors, the sinkers, the stinkers in a SCRABBLE game.

And SCRABBLE economics. Most of us scrabble along from payday to payday trying to score enough points to give a respectable showing on the board. It helps to have some multiple point consonants and some vowels. It really helps to have the Q & the Z – big 10 point letters, or the J, X & K followed by the W, H, & Y.

And being born to a triple word score and covering a double letter with a big point letter plus a bonus for using all your letters and clearing your rack? You get 50 bonus points and a big start over — all new letters. Maybe your parents had lots of extra points for you to start with. That and English is your primary language. It is the language of business world-wide.

And I think of the ways SCRABBLE is a mirror of economic or income inequality. The luck of the draw. The letters you’re born with.

Then again, it is just a game.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s