I may define the "casual observer" on bgg. I've been floating around since 2004 but haven't become active until recently.
Settlers of Catan was my first "real" game, so it holds a special place in my gaming heart. I still play it often with another couple. I had a solid group of guys to play games with in high school -- stuff ranging from Settlers to Napoleon in Europe.
That being said, what kid didn't grow up on all-nighters of Risk and Stratego???
My gaming focus has recently shifted from a group of guys to playing with my awesomely-accommodating girlfriend. Yeah, I'm that guy who is always soaking up the "play this with your wife" geeklist. She claims to not be a gamer...
but we spend a lot of free time playing Carcs, Lost Cities, Battle Line, and more recently, Mr. Jack. She even indulges me in BattleLore!
I love board games because they are a great way to interact with people on a deeper level than conversation.
My top 10 is based strictly on rating, and my hot 10 is what's going on recently.