A couple months ago, rows of gray, green, and yellow boxes started showing up on my social media feeds. I said to myself, “Self, what the expletive?”
An inquisitive person, I researched the matter and learned it was a game called Wordle. At first, I wasn’t interested. After all, I don’t play games because games require me to download apps, and with a few exceptions, I avoid apps. But once I found out the game would not require me to download an app, I decided to give it a try.
Two months later, I’m still giving Wordle a try every day.
For those of you who don’t play, Wordle is like hangman or that old game show Lingo. You get one five-letter word a day. (Everybody gets the same word.) You get six guesses. If you guess a letter in the correct place, the letter turns green. If it’s in the word but out of place, it turns yellow. If a letter is not in the word, it’s gray.
Let’s be honest. We’re always fussing with one another about something. I like that Wordle brings people together. I don’t post my scores online because I play on a device that’s not connected to my accounts.
But I enjoy following other people’s Wordle journeys, even if I don’t always comment on them. I do not share my starting word, though. In fact, I guard it like it’s a trademark. Why? No good reason. I will tell you that I frequently use the same second word, too. (Which I will also not share.) Oftentimes, however, I start guessing on the second word. It depends on how the gray, green, and yellow boxes shake out in the first word.
Speaking of shake, that was the word one day last week. It caused much consternation. I know what you’re thinking. How could a common word like shake cause trouble? Because S_A_E could be skate, stare, shape, slate, scare, state…I could go on.
It depends on your remaining letters, but sometimes it comes down to a lucky guess. Other Wordle players might not want to admit that luck plays a big part in the game, but it does.
Not being a dumb expletive plays a part, too. As of this writing, I’ve failed to guess the word once – ultra. Words starting with vowels as well as those with repeating letters confound me because I frequently forget that words can start with vowels or contain repeating letters.
That’s why I laugh and laugh when some folks – they know who they are – tell me they don’t play Wordle because they’re concerned it will make them feel stupid.
To be fair, some Wordle words are not common. I’m looking at you swill and tacit. Others, such as those and could are quite familiar. Yes, those and could have been Wordle words since I started playing.
I don’t really care how many guesses it takes to guess the word as long as I don’t tap out. I’ve only gotten the word on the second try once. The word was cynic. Yes, I had one green letter and another yellow one after the first word, but if there’s one word I’m going to get on the second try, it’s cynic.
This post originally appeared in the Appalachian News-Express.