The Wall Street Journal's Kevin Clark, who has been pumping out fun, off-color NFL stories all year, has another good one today. It's all about how a handful of Green Bay Packers got hooked on Settlers of Catan, the board game that all of your buddies who are bearded craft-beer enthusiasts are addicted to.
Clark's entire piece is worth a read, but the best part concerns a game store in Green Bay that found itself in an economic boom when word got out that Packers liked playing board games:
As the Packers learned to love the game, something started to happen. [tight end Justin] Perillo, in passing, mentioned on a local radio show that he and his teammates had played the game the night before. Pat Fuge, who runs Gnome Games, a Green Bay game store, was flooded with texts and calls about it. Packers have occasionally come into Gnome Games—where the events include Pokémon and Magic: The Gathering releases—but those players were there to buy backgammon or other basic games. "Jordy Nelson bought a chess set," Fuge said of the Packers' star receiver.
Fuge said most of the gamers are Packers fans, but the store is one of the few local businesses that don't allow Lambeau Field parking on game days—because many of the customers would like to play board games on a Sunday and not necessarily watch football. But when word spread that the Packers were playing Catan, people started pouring into the store. After Perillo mentioned it in December, Fuge said, he sold "double what I expected." He usually orders too many for the Christmas season, but this time he had to restock in mid-December. "When the average person sees the Packers doing it, it becomes a safe thing. That it's not the kids in mom's basement anymore," Fuge said.
Everyone who lives in Green Bay is adorable.