Nertz . . . are you competitive? Question #48

I don’t just sit down and play games very much. I tend to get into “work mode” and forget to ever stop and play. I should play more. I’ve got to realize that the kids are growing fast and sometimes the dishes can wait.

Yeah, well…it seems that lately I need to learn that we’ve got to have dishes to eat on and the games may eventually need to be put on hold.

Last weekend Adam and BryAnna were over as well as Adam’s mom, Amy, from out of town. Sunday afternoon they said, “Hey, we should play Nertz.” 

Nertz!!  I used to play that all the time with my mom!!! I hadn’t played Nertz for years!!!!!

So we played Nertz. Until way past my bedtime.

Nertz is a very fast moving card game. You snooze you lose.

Yeah, I totally lost. Apparently the years that have gone by since I had played the game took their toll. I am not nearly as fast as I used to be.  

BUT, wow did I get into the game. Even though I was losing pitifully…I was determined to keep playing until none of us could stand up any longer.

I realized how insane I had been after the game was over when my darling husband of fifteen years folded his hands across his chest, raised his eyebrows, cocked his head and with a smirk on his face said, “Well.  I believe I learned a thing or two about my wife tonight.”

What? That I’m a little more competitive than either of us realized? Oh that. 

Maybe he was talking about the time I pointed my finger right in Adam’s face and yelled, “DUDE!  WHO do you think has been FEEDING you these good home cooked meals since you got to college, HUH?!?!”  

Hey, he kept putting his cards right where I wanted to put MY cards just a half a second before I got to it. The nerve.  I still haven’t decided if I’m feeding him again or not. He totally played too well and too fast.

I may have also resorted to a little bit of name calling and in a very whiny voice told a person or two something like, “Aww, you STINK.”  (Like, when they got 27 points in one round and I got negative 14.)


I am now addicted to playing Nertz. We’ve been having family games of it in the evenings and the boys and I have been playing every afternoon as soon as we get our work done. These games with my boys are much more my speed, but I’m totally trying to improve my game. Because Adam and BryAnna will be back and we will be playing again and I will win eventually oh-yes-I-will-so-there-Mr. Adam. Bah!


For the record, I have not been calling my children names during (or after) our Nertz games, nor have I been yelling in their faces. (I have, however, been gloating inwardly a little bit about how badly I’m beating all of them. Proves my insanity a bit doesn’t it? Really Laura…you’re proud of yourself for beating your seven year old in a difficult card game? Get a grip.)

My QUESTIONS for you today are:  Are you competitive? Do you like games? What are your favorite games? 

Wanna come over and play Nertz?


  1. says

    I am insanely competitive!! We also love to play card games. Screwy Louie and Skip Bo Golf are our favorites(and my eight year old can usually beat me). I have no idea if they are even real games. My grandparents always bring home a new card game after their winter down south. Get enough retired folks sitting around and you’re bound to come up with some fun new games.


    Heather Reply:

    I just discovered this game and we LOVE it! it’s a little hard
    for my 7 year old to play but we had family in town and we played for
    hours. On my way over to the computer to read your daily blog, I saw
    the cards sitting there and was about to ask my family to play. But,
    I should do some of my own work before playing! Maybe later tonight…


    Julie Reply:

    Someone else was telling me that they play the golf game using skip bo cards-I’ve looked on the internet for diections and rules bu have had no luck-Could you please let me know what they are, if this sounds like what you play? Thanks Julie


    Mike Reply:

    I can’t find rules to 9 card skip both golf. I used to play and now I can’t remember some of the rules


  2. says

    LOVE games! I’m reasonably competitive, but I don’t think it’s over the top. Ever played spoons? Your boys would love it! (Put away the breakables, and take off rings and watches.) When I’m around my parents, we play pitch (including Polack style to shake things up), cribbage, and Yahtzee. Hubs has a cousin in law that plays a funky Golf that is nothing like I’ve seen anywhere else. In high school, we played a lot of Tripoli and Taboo, with the occasional Scattergories. I could go on and on! And yes, I WOULD like to come over and learn how to play Nertz. You could stomp me, since I’m a newbie. :>)

    (PS – next site upgrade, how about a subscribe to comments option?)


  3. says

    I LOVE to play games– but I get in work mode like you do and I forget to stop and have fun.

    I don’t know what Nertz is- but we often play Skip-bo and boy do we (me) get loud and rowdy!

    But what I’m wondering is this:


  4. says

    Our family gets rowdy when playing Dutch Blitz! What a fun game! We recently discovered Phase 10 Dice and spent every evening of our vacation, scrunched around the camper table, whoopin’ the kids! (it was raining!)But we’re not competitive…not at all…


    SnoWhite Reply:

    We love Dutch blitz! You know.. you can play it with a regular deck of cards too?


  5. elaine says

    “Insanely competitive” would pretty much describe me, too. I once had a counselor mention something about me being competitive and I guffawed and said, “Me? Competitive? Hardly! I’m not athletic!” He and his wife burst out laughing … literally slapping their thighs. I’m sitting there looking at them like, “what?” I truly didn’t have a clue how competitive I was because I had always associated it with sports. Only since that time (and small children) have I realized how bad I am. I grit my teeth when I “let” my kids win. Now that I am more aware of it, it’s pretty funny to look at certain things I do just to win. Wonder where my kids get it from?? :)


  6. says

    Love to play calm card games. I totally avoid playing with loud competitive people because I feel so embarrassed for them. lol
    I want to win inside, but I don’t show it. Also I noticed competitive people don’t enjoy playing with me. So can’t relate, but you totally crack me up with your description of yourself and the games.


  7. Shannon says

    I am super competitive and come from a game playing family. We play Yahtzee, card games, trivia games, you name it. But we mostly love Wahoo. Some people call it Aggravation. My grandpa even makes homemade boards out of oak (each family member has his or her own). Our holidays and get togethers always include a Wahoo tournament. It is the simplest game but super fun when you play partners. All ages have a blast.


  8. Jennifer says

    I so love your sense of humour. This was a good reminder to me to play with my children. I’ve been sick lately and not doing much with them, but I think I could play some games without wearing myself out. They would love it and so would I. Our family loves Dutch Blitz – a fast card game that is easy enough for a five-year-old to learn.


  9. says

    What is Nertz? It’s sounds like my kinda game. I can get very competitive with my hubby and other adults. My kids tend to cry if I get that way toward them. Wimps. lol


  10. says

    I am so extremely competitive. When I was on bedrest with my 2nd child, I would make my husband play games and I was so competitive that he wouldn’t want to play, but he had to continue because his poor wife was on bedrest. The day I came off of bedrest was the day our game playing ended. Now I have to enlist other players!

    That is too cute that you are more competitive than you thought!


  11. says

    My husband and I love Nertz, too! It does bring out the competitiveness in a person, though! LOL! And it’s a game I never want to stop playing, either!

    Now I want to have a bunch of folks over so we can play! :)


  12. says

    I am somewhat competitive… but I often play with people who are more competitive than I :)

    We love strategy games — Settlers of Catan (I think your boys will one day love this game), Blockus (kind of like Tetris), Carcassonne Hunters and Gatherers (tile laying game) and Ticket to Ride.

    We also are a big fan of card games – we got a really cheap copy ($1.20) of the Penguin Book of Card Games and pick fun games to play out of it! Our favorites are 500, Pip Pip, Up and Down the River and of course, Eurchre.


  13. Marie says

    I love games! We play all sorts of card games and board games. I have never heard of Nertz so I’m off to look it up right now! I am very competitive but try to not to let it get the best of me. : )


  14. Shannon says

    I second the strategy games! Now that it’s darker earlier and cold, my husband and I have started to play more games already! We love Ticket to Ride too! We also like San Juan. When I don’t feel like concentrating as much, a quick game of scattergories is fun too.


  15. says

    We play Phase 10 and Tripoly. Unfortunately I scored my husband on both of those games recently. When I was in labor with my son we played Phase 10 (after I got my epidural) and I just skunked my husband. He wasn’t trying to let me win, it just happened. Too funny!


  16. Kathy Shaner says

    I used to know how to play Nertz, and I loved it! It’s been years, though, so I probably wouldn’t even know how to play anymore.

    I’m not all that competitive, but I do get this inner smirk when I KNOW I’m going to beat someone. Especially if it’s someone who is competitive and convinced they’re going to win. I do find it really gratifying to calm beat their socks off…


  17. says

    I tend to be pretty competitive myself! I don’t think I’ve ever played Nertz, but now I’m kinda scared to play it with you! :)


  18. says

    We have game nights quite frequently. Mostly with a couple that we’re trying to minister to! They come over once or twice a week and after our kids go to bed we have lots of game fun. Our favorites are Uno, Phase 10 and Settlers of Catan. And my favorites for large groups are Catch Phrase and Mad Gab!! I am pretty competitive, too, but try not to let it get too out of hand!!!


  19. Crystal says

    i am not very competitive but i do get excited when i play candyland .. yes oh yes i love candyland it has been my favorite sence 4-5yrs old :-) so i do tend to be a little competitive with my 7.5yr old hahaha!!!


  20. says

    I am pretty competitive and yet it seems like I always lose every game!

    I want to come play Nertz! We used to play all the time in college, but my DH doesn’t like to play, so I don’t have anyone to play with!


  21. Serenity says

    I was laughing my head off about your competiveness! Now I totally wish we had gotten to know eachother in Colorado!! I am TOTALLY competive and have been known to save (for many years) the score card from games that I have won by huge margins. That’s not wrong, is it?

    My husband and I love to play Risk and Roll and we have gotten my brothers hooked on it too. I do HATE playing Scrabble with DH because I have NEVER beaten him. He’s just so stinkin’ smart! AHHHHHH!!!!!


  22. says

    You so funny… and now I want to come play Nertz with you. I’m pretty sure I know how to play it, but it’s been a long time.

    And I would have totally been acting the way you were acting.

    If I do get to play games with you, it’d probably be best if we played “team” games, and if were on the same team together, versus playing against each other. It could get ugly otherwise. :-)


  23. Melinda M says

    Competitive much? Me? Um, just a little bit LOL Love playing games. I love when my moms groups have game night!


  24. says

    What a great story! I am competitive with games, but I also want every one to win or come really close. I HATE playing Monopoly with my hubby or many of my friends – they all have studied the insiders book to Monopoly and get cutthroat and a bit mean. I will say, we are ADDICTED to Rail Baron! This game has been out of print for at least a decade. Hubby surprised me years ago with my own that he found on eBay for a whopping $75! $75 for a BOARD GAME!!! It really is that fantastic that I wasn’t upset with the price. It is based on historic US railroads and is like a combination of Monopoly and Risk. I think the difference is that even though Hubby still wins most of the time, I’ve done well enough to nearly keep him from winning several times. Oh – and there is no INSIDERS GUIDE to this game!


  25. soonermomof7 says

    I would not say I am terribly competitive. I really enjoy the time spent more than the activity. I played way too many card games as a kid. However, I also played Tri-ominos. I will play it every time! It’s a quick game than even young children can play.


  26. says

    I am competative. I get this from my mother. James and I love to play games and many times our “big gift” for each other on special occasions will be a good quality (usually German) game from a specialty game shop. Early on, I nearly ruined a game (not physically) I had bought him by taking the results of the game so personally that I got upset. Since then, I sort of have a back off mechanism where I give myself a little distance and perspective (take dishes to the kitchen, dish ice cream, rock the baby) between turns so that I don’t get all tensed up. It’s silly. I do enjoy playing games and can still give James a run for his money on the two player ones, but I try REALLY hard not to get so invested in them that I get mad.

    I don’t know how that is possible with Nertz though. A good amount of healthy humor and self-control would work, I guess. I haven’t played that since my new found strategy though, and I’m pretty sure running a load of laundry during the game wouldn’t work!


  27. Michelle H. says

    Loving reading about the games that everyone plays. Pinochle is the big game in my family. I moved 2000 miles from home and don’t know anyone local that plays, so needless to say, when I go home to visit we play every night.

    Have you played Hand and Foot? My great-aunts got into it several years ago and they are cutthroat! Rowdy card game, and like Nertz you can add as many people as you want just by adding more decks.


  28. Hamons Family says

    Before kids, I was much more competitive, but with two little ones and hardly any time to focus on a game, not so much anymore. When I do get a chance to play a game, I am much more mellow about it. I enjoy looking at the big picture and watching the other players. I do look forward to playing games with my girls though!


  29. says

    Competitive? Oh my, YES! I think my favorite card game is Dutch Blitz … very fast and competitive.

    A couple years back, my father and sister and I spent about 2 weeks helping some dear friends of ours who had a baby #11 on the way, and were building a house for the grandmother. Anyway, most of the nights, I stayed up past midnight playing Dutch Blitz … so much that my sister teased me pretty strongly about how competitive I was.

    And yes, I would end a losing game with the warning that “I’ll win next time!”

    I’ll have to check out Nertz … never heard of it.


  30. says

    I am so competitive that people won’t play games with me anymore! I work with mentally and physically challenged adults though so I have to let them win or they become angry! Some of them can become physical so for my safety I let them win :)


  31. says

    I would SO love to come over and play NERTZ!!! But I would SSSOOOO beat you! (Oops. Was that outloud? Might be a little competitive over here, too.)


  32. DorthyM says

    Me? Competitive? n … no. not at all. Okay maybe a little. ok, a lot! We love playing phase ten., canasta, and gin. I have to remind myself sometimes not to play cut throat unless i’m playing with family. I totally get into games. And dont get me started on pogo games online! lol.


  33. Katie says

    I am so competitive and Nertz is so addicting. My mom’s side of the family has stopped giving Christmas presents and for the past 7 years has been doing 2 full days of crazy games. We have played Nerts with 16 people and boy does that get crazy!!! We are all a very competitive family. We have done Scavenger hunts all over Denver, Survivor including killing, cooking and eating a rabbit, Go Kart Racing and so many more fun games. I have so enjoyed these Christmas Memories and will forever remember each and every year. It also gives us time to actually get to know each other more than just swapping gifts!!!!


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