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Lessons learned from assassins


This quarter is coming to an end, which means my freshman year at Stanford is almost over. So, naturally, my dorm has been squeezing in some of the last of the most important Stanford traditions. More specifically, last week we started playing a round of Assassins. For anyone unfamiliar with the game, you are assigned a target, but you also have a target going after you, and use a water gun in an attempt to shoot your target without being shot. When you eliminate your own target, you receive the target of the person you eliminated. It’s a loop, and a simple enough game. But believe it or not, in the short 48 hours that I was actually still alive (I made it to the top 15 though, so hey), there were some decently valuable lessons I left with. Here’s what I learned from my dorm’s game of Assassins. 

  1. While it’s good to trust other people, you can’t always trust other people, and you definitely can’t trust everyone. In this game, it was important for me to have a few people that I knew could watch my back for me or give me reliable information. Granted, most of these people weren’t playing. But technically anyone playing can get help from anyone they want to, regardless of whether or not they’re in the game, so you never really know if you’re safe. If I didn’t have a few people I could trust, I probably wouldn’t have lasted for as long as I had. But also, apparently one of my friends wanted to team up with my next door neighbor so she could eliminate me, so you’ve got to be careful about who you trust as well.
  2. Betrayal hurts, and guilt follows. When I eliminated one of my friends just a few hours into the start of the game, I saw the look in her eyes and the disbelief on her face, and I actually felt bad for a little bit. It’s a tough world I suppose.
  3. What goes around, comes around. At one point, my target was a girl in my Spanish class, but classrooms are off limits, so I got to class earlier than usual so that I could hide outside and wait for her to arrive. As soon as she got there, she received a blast of water right to the face. We had another class together later that day, and as soon as I exited a few hours later, I felt a cold spray on the back of my head. She had sold out my location to my assassin. Oh, how the tables had turned.
  4. I really shouldn’t walk with my face in my phone. Aside from the obvious risk of running into people, I also was looking at my phone when I was eliminated. Maybe if I had been more aware of my surroundings, I would have thought to check around the corners before blindly walking forward.

Well, you win some, you lose some. I had a fun two days. At least I have these four lessons to walk away with. And besides, it gets really tiring being on edge all the time.


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