Tuesday, October 14, 2008

people with games and stories to tell

Regular readers of this blog might have come to the conclusion that I enjoy heading to the pub for a cold beer every now and again. Some of you out there might agree with me. Some of you out there might even drink with me, so cheers (your shout) if that's the case.

There are a few games that you can play whilst you're drinking at the pub - and I'm not talking about darts or pool, because I'm useless at both of those. Same with Big Game Hunter and those golf video games where you have to roll your hand over the magic button ball thing. If they had Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat or Golden Axe at pubs, I'd probably never leave. But the games I'm talking about are the ones you play at your table while you chat and drink with your friends.

Game 1: Beer-ringed octopus

Simply take your frosty schooner of beer and leave it on the table (no coaster) for a few seconds. Lift it up and take a drink. Put it down again, in a slightly different spot on the table. Lift it up again and look at the beginning of your masterpiece. Keep sipping and using the condensation from your glass to make a pretty picture. The rules here are simple: You must drink before placing your glass back down to add a new circle or stroke. You will also need to act quickly, because those beer-rings won't stay around forever.
* points are awarded by the other members of the table for artistic merit

Game 2: The Missing Drink

When one of your drinking buddies is distracted by a hot bartender, another attractive bar patron or a television screen, take their drink and exchange it for yours. This is an especially fun game if they have a lot more in their glass than you do, and don't realise until one of you has finished your drink. Bonus points are awarded if they are drinking something different to you.
* 1 bonus point if it's a different brand/flavour beer
* 2 bonus points if they are drinking a mixed spirit and you exchange it for beer/a different spirit
* 3 bonus points if you don't exchange your drink at all and finish both
- 2 points for getting caught in the swapping act
- 1 point if they pick it after their initial sip
- 4 points if you exchange it for a drink with less in it than your own

Game 3: (Hair of the) Shaggy Dog

This one should be kept for later in the drinking session when everyone's had a few, and tongues have been loosened by a substantial amount of alcohol. It's that point in the night where everything is funny and everyone has something to add.

The object of the game is to tell a story or a joke off the cuff, derailing all other conversations through the anticipation that your story will be entertaining, funny or promote further conversation. The idea is to keep your audience spellbound and hanging on every word, despite your story not having a clear beginning, middle or end. A great way to frustrate your companions is to complicate every detail of your story. Instead of saying "a few days ago at work..." try this: "a few days ago, like, last Wednesday... or Tuesday... no, it wasn't Tuesday, that was the day I had training, so it must have been Wednesday, because I had to go to the shop to get my lunch because I left it on the bench at home, and I went to Subway and ran into a guy from school who was coming out of the bookshop... anyway, so on Wednesday, my friend... well, not really my friend, it's my friend's ex-boyfriend, who used to go out with Kate from uni... not the Kate you know, a different Kate who was in one of my tutes in first year..." by this stage, you should have confused people as to whether this story is about you, the guy from school, Kate, your friend's ex-boyfriend, Subway or your own work.
* 1 point if you can keep everyone's attention for 2 minutes.
* 2 points if you actually make it to a discernable "ending". 2 bonus points if you can then create a sequel.
* 3 points if someone then prompts you with a genuine, "Then what happened?"
-1 if you get interrupted within the first 30 seconds.
-1 if you lose more than half your audience after your first 'complication'.

Game 4: Drink to forget

It's your round at the bar, you need to get four beers and a bourbon. Come back to the table with the drinks with three beers and two bourbons, and convince someone that they ordered a bourbon.
* 1 point if he takes the drink but is a bit miffed.
* 2 points if you succeed in convincing him.
* 3 points if he apologises for disbelieving you.
- 2 points if you are forced to go back to the bar to get the right drink.

Game 5: Tower of Beerbell

The Tower of Beerbell is a race to build a tower of empty beer glasses on your table. By the sixth glass, the tower starts to lean quite precariously, so more care needs to be taken when stacking. It is a contest against another person or team that is sitting on your table, as well as a challenge against the bar staff who are collecting the empties. Once the first tower is collected, simply begin again and try to beat your previous mark.
* 1 point if you stack more glasses than your opponent
* 3 points if you stack more glasses in round 2 than you did in round 1
-2 points if the bar staff collect before your tower has reached its third tier
-3 points if you get asked not to build any more towers by the bar staff
-5 points if your tower collapses

Game 6: Pub Idol

The idea of this game is to hum or sing a line from a well-known song, and continue it for as long as it takes for someone else to pick it up.
* 1 point if you get the whole table singing with you.
* 2 points if it only needed one line.
* 4 points if it spreads to strangers at another table.
* 100 points if it involves the whole bar.
-2 points if no-one picks it up after 5 repetitions
-5 points if someone succeeds in the same song that you failed in.

Game on!

No comments: