Play: the trivial pursuits of children, teenagers, and even adults is a lot more important than realized. Contrary to the beliefs of Giamatti, play and games have true health and mental effects on the body. Games are beneficial on the scientific levels, much deeper than the beliefs of Giamatti that games are played to imitate the gods and worship the gods. Play is crucial for the development of a child’s social, emotional, and cognitive growth and advancement. Key skills and qualities such as problem solving, independence, curiosity, and independence are exercised by game playing. It also brings a child to explore his or her feelings and values, and essentially develop social skills.
I remember that as a child, board games and strategy games consisted of my daily activities. All of those Sudoku puzzles, problem-solving video games, strategy building quests, and competition-filled games of chess made me the person I am today. Not only did those games keep me occupied and entertained, but also kept my cognitive skills active.
Our society tends to dismiss play for adults. Play is perceived as unproductive, petty or even a guilty pleasure. Adults focus heavily on work and family commitments; however, play is an actual experience filled with numerous benefits. Play has proven to relieve stress, stimulate the mind, improve relationships, and enhance brain function. Overall, play affects your entire well-being and the productivity of one’s work is highly-dependent on one’s work. This is the main reason many big companies like Google, Apple, and Facebook incorporate play in the workplace. This is why Bernard Suits in the Grasshopper: Games, Life, and Utopia called playing the “ideal of existence.”
Watching, playing, and participating, Play whether in the form of games or sports have benefited society in ways one cannot even imagine. Yesterday, Derek Jeter, shortstop for the New York Yankees, played his final game at Yankee Stadium in his glorified 20 year career. Winning the game with a walk-off single, Derek Jeter amazed NY and the whole world with his greatness one last time. For many, sports and play are a release from the real world to relax and truly develop into better people. Sports allow people to stay sane in a society crushed by stress and expectations. A role model to me and many others, Derek Jeter lived a life of drama-free baseball and dedication. His values and attitude as a Yankee and his intangibles as a player on and off the field makes him the face of the MLB and the face of NY. Growing up 40 minutes from Yankee Stadium, Derek Jeter was an idol to say the least. The way he played the game and motivated others to work hard. Since 1996, Jeter spoke with his bat and glove and told the world that work and play go hand-for-hand. The values, themes, and morals play can teach a society transcends the “uselessness” of the activity. With the faces of Derek Jeter and many other athletes, sports and games have impacted the world greatly and inspired millions.
Giamatti, A. Bartlett. Take Time for Paradise: Americans and Their Games. New York: Summit, 1989. Print.