“You know, if you play your cards right, you can go so far in life”
We are sitting in class and playing cards. Today’s game of choice is B.S, fairly simple. All you have to do is call someone’s bluff when they lie about the cards they have. “I have two aces” “B.S!” Den says to Marisca, pleased to discover that she did not, in fact, have two aces.
As I sit there watching the game progress, I witness a lot of real life bullshit occurring. For example, Marisca won the game twice because she received the best hands in the deck. What makes these games unfair is that if someone is dealt better cards, they have basically won the game on pure luck. If anything, it undeniably gives them an upper hand against their opponents. People always say that it's not about what cards you're dealt, but what you make of those cards. So, basically, if someone is always dealt really good cards, you can still win through perseverance and a positive attitude. Metaphorically inspiring. Physically impossible.
Ash won four times, and it had nothing to do with her cards, but her impeccable poker face that led everyone to believe every word she says, even when it is completely false. Worst of all is Den, who is best friends with Arnold (their parents go way back) who is a bystander in this entire game, and who has been not-so-inconspicuously watching other people’s cards and giving Den signals on what move to make. The last player is James, the only member out of our friends who unfortunately grew up in a very rough neighborhood and did not experience the luxuries we did. No matter who has the best set of cards, no matter who has the best poker face, or who has the “inside source,” James always wins because… well it’s because he’s had a hard life.
I don’t understand how this happens every time. No game is just a game of equal opportunity, but there is always an extremely advantageous person, a perfect liar and deceiver (who everyone should be weary of but surprisingly isn’t), a cheater who shouldn’t even be allowed to play, and the kid who always wins the game because he always seems to lose in life. I am the only person who had no insight on this game, no upper hand, no warning, nothing.
We are sorry to inform you that you have not been accepted…
In school, I was not valedictorian (though I worked the hardest), I was not student body president (though I undisputedly earned it), I did not play any sports (I am simply not gifted in that department) and to top it off, I live in an upper lower middle class home; not rich enough to be handed my dreams on a platter, but not poor enough to be given by dreams sympathetically. Fortunately, I was the best member of the band team. Unfortunately, nobody gives a s***. With this anger built up inside me, all I could think about was that although I had not found my way yet, it seemed that everyone else was given a path from the start while I was left with nothing. What happens to people like me? The achievers who never had the chance to achieve? They say I have to play my cards right, I have to find a way to win. I don’t fit in, I don’t stand out, I don’t have an advantage, and I don’t have a disadvantage that somehow translates into an advantage when going up against everyone else. As I am explaining this to my mother, who cannot comprehend why I did not get accepted, she tells me that it’s not about what I was given, but what I make of it.
“You know if you play your cards right, you can go so far in life,” she says to me.
And all I want to do is respond with is the truth; that playing your cards right can make you a good player, but it doesn’t keep you in the game, and that for some reason there are people who always win and people who always lose because that’s life, and life sucks. Instead, I say the first word to come into my mind, the last word to escape my thoughts.