A Fun New (Old) Game to Play While Drinking

Exquisite CorpseWhile the readers — and writers — on this site are no strangers to a good time, even the heartiest of partiers can find themselves stranded in a rut caused by lack of novelty.  We’ve all known the soul-crushing boredom that results from having the same conversation with the same people in the same place again. It can transform one’s imbibing from recreational to medicinal. We can all use a shake-up every now and then, and it often seems that the best way forward can be found by reaching back.

The next time your good times are more boring than blaring, why not introduce an Exquisite Corpse?

Wikipedia explains:

Exquisite corpse (also known as exquisite cadaver or rotating corpse) is a method by which a collection of words or images is collectively assembled. Each collaborator adds to a composition in sequence, either by following a rule (e.g. “The adjective noun adverb verb the adjective noun”) or by being allowed to see the end of what the previous person contributed.

The technique was invented by Surrealists and is similar to an old parlour game called Consequences in which players write in turn on a sheet of paper, fold it to conceal part of the writing, and then pass it to the next player for a further contribution. Surrealism principal founder André Breton reported that it started in fun, but became playful and eventually enriching. Breton said the diversion started about 1925, but Pierre Reverdy wrote that it started much earlier, at least before 1918.

Here are the ground rules my tong has adopted for our diabolical creations:

1. Open your third eye and seek out a nearby text. Any book, magazine, flyer, poster, website — perhaps this luminous scroll? — will do.

2. Find a random passage and copy a found sentence onto a piece of paper.

3. Pass the paper from comrade to comrade in any way that seems to fit the mood.

4. Each person generally writes one sentence. Feel free to write sentence fragments, letting your co-conspirators finish your thoughts.

Read more here…

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  • Gemmarama

    i still prefer “i have never…” but that one never works out very well for me…

  • joenolan

    We've been having a lot of fun with this one. Happy to share.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    Also the name of a great book…by Poppy Z Brite. The title is not an accident…but one warning…be prepared for graphic murder…its beautifully written and phrased, but the material is terrifying all the more because of the skill with which it is rendered.

  • justagirl

    when you were a young man we were all living in the treetops.

  • Anonymous

    Here’s a variant I played a lot as an undergrad:
    First, you need at least 5 people for it to work; everyone should be roughly in a circle. Each person has small pieces of paper (ie a normal sheet of printer paper torn into quarters) – every player should have as many pieces of paper as there are people.

    Everyone writes a sentence on the first piece of paper. When everyone is done, you pass the entire stack to the left/right. The sentence is read and that piece of paper is moved to the bottom of the stack; everyone draws a picture depicting the sentence. The stack is passed around again, the picture is moved to the bottom of the stack and this time a sentence is written describing the picture.
    Repeat until there are no more blank papers in everyone’s stack.

    It’s fun! And a lack of artistic skills actually adds to the fun! But creativity is a must.

  • nemoide

    Here's a variant I played a lot as an undergrad:
    First, you need at least 5 people for it to work; everyone should be roughly in a circle. Each person has small pieces of paper (ie a normal sheet of printer paper torn into quarters) – every player should have as many pieces of paper as there are people.

    Everyone writes a sentence on the first piece of paper. When everyone is done, you pass the entire stack to the left/right. The sentence is read and that piece of paper is moved to the bottom of the stack; everyone draws a picture depicting the sentence. The stack is passed around again, the picture is moved to the bottom of the stack and this time a sentence is written describing the picture.
    Repeat until there are no more blank papers in everyone's stack.

    It's fun! And a lack of artistic skills actually adds to the fun! But creativity is a must.

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