How do we learn how to play them? If we play Game-X, must we follow “all” of the rules ordinarily known and ascribed in order for Game-X to still be recognizable as such, or does it become “Modified Game-X”.
If little Toby plays his first game, but doesn’t know the rules, yet nevertheless realizes that games are “fun” because everyone else is smiling and seemingly excited, does the fact that the kid-who-knows-no-rules plays without knowing the limits and boundaries of the game make him into a participant, or a pariah? Of course, if he stamps his feet in the middle of the game and declares that he doesn’t like the game, and walks off (even taking with him the proverbial ball), can we declare him to be a poor sport, an okay-sport, or any sport at all if he never knew the rules of the game in the first place and therefore never quite played the “real” game?
How about dogs — do they “play” games? The dog that chases the ball but doesn’t want to bring it back to the ball-thrower, and instead runs away with it — has he broken the “rules of the game”? How is it that dogs play games with their masters without ever being able to explain what the parameters of the rules are?
Then, of course, there is the slight modification in the term “games”, as in “games that people play”. We all know what that means — of being insincere, fake, or otherwise putting on a double-face. Why is that called a “game”? Is it because it is not real, and constitutes a copy of “make-believe”, much like playing a game when we all know that it is not reality that is being rehearsed; and yet, isn’t playing a game — any game — just a part of the reality of the world we live in? Why, then, is life bifurcated between “games” and “reality”, when in fact both are real in the sense that we are living a life of surviving, making a living, etc.? Yet, we constantly distinguish between “playing” and “living”, as if there is a difference to be identified.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition, such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal worker from any longer performing all of the essential elements of the Federal or Postal worker’s job, career or craft, the preparations needed to come to a point of realizing that an effective Federal Disability Retirement application must be filed, often requires a recognition that the proverbial “game” is “up”.
Whether the Supervisors and Managers at the Federal Agency or the Postal Facility are up to their usual “games” or not — of harassment, derisive comments, making your life “hell” by increasing the levels of pressure or stress, is really besides the point. What matters is that life itself is not a “game” at all, and those who separate games from the daily living activities don’t really “get it”.
Medical conditions bring to the forefront the reality of living, and the harshness of how people treat other people. Yes, preparing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, may seem like just one of those other “games” that have to be “played” — but the reality is that an effective OPM Disability Retirement application is a necessary part of life’s many facets of games and reality-based endeavors, such that the “rules of the game” always need to be consulted in order to “play” it well, and thus the first step is to learn the rules by consulting with an attorney who can advise on the rules themselves.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire