Good-bye Arthur Melin

Now that you're dead, your contributions to humanity (Superball, Frisbee, Hula Hoop, Slip'N Slide, Silly String) can finally be acknowledged.

Thank you, Arthur, for your gifts. Yes, I know, you didn't invent the Frisbee. You bought out Pluto Platter. But you definitely knew a good toy when you saw one (most of the time - there was the "Belly Bongo"), and gave the world the toy I most wish I had invented.


And now, for a little exercise in perspective. (via Presurfer)

The Biology of Hope

Actual Title: "The Anticipation of a Laughter Eustress Event Modulates Mood States Prior to the Actual Humor Experience"; L.S. Berk, D.L. Felten, J. Westengard;
Susan Samueli Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, UC Irvine College of Medicine, and Loma Linda University School of Medicine, Loma Linda, CA.

"We believe that the "biology of hope" that underlies recovery from many chronic disorders includes, in part, the synonyms optimism, anticipation, expectation of positive interventions and experiences. If complementary and integrative interventions/adjunctive therapies, directed towards wellness and recovery from chronic diseases, can incorporate positive expectation or anticipatory experiences ( "hope," the resultant changes may not only 1) contribute to beneficial positive mood state changes; but also, 2) modify important biological/chemical mediators that optimize immune responses; 3) diminish stress-related molecules and inflammatory mediators; and in total 4) potentially contribute to the prevention and healing processes. "

everyrule.com

Everyrule.com

Well, a LOT of rules. For kids games and sports, casino games and card games and etiquette, even.

Labels:


"Laugh and the world laughs with you. Cry and it won’t even lend you a handkerchief."

Anne Durrum Robinson, "Chairwoman of the Bored...an 88-year-old Texan who has preached the healing power of humor, creativity, and intuition in workshops and keynote speeches for over 20 years."

What to say to a goarbellied, rump-fed ratabane

A Shakespearean Insult Generator for the temporarily flummoxed, by way of ZFilter

Playing Grownup

Ever see kids playing grownup? Notice how they get so serious and sometimes even mean? Notice how well they've learned to look like they're not having fun?

Here's my Logical Conclusion of the Day:

We're still playing grownup.

Oh, we're good, all right. Especially at looking serious. And looking like we're not having fun.

But we are still only playing. And playing only grownup.

Department of Welcome Twists in the Evolution of Internet Services:

MEETUP is an online service for people who want to meet people in the in the (gasp) flesh! Find or create a topic. Find a meeting place near you (select from their listing - Starbucks, Taco Bell, whatever). And meet with like-minded strangers.

Lot's of fun potential here.

(thanks Doc)


And while we're at it, here's one of Scott Kim's

In response to this from Roger Greenaway.

I want to talk first about DeepFUN, then about Deep Fun, DeepFUN the meditation practice first, then Deep Fun the experience, basically because I've been thinking more about it.

I'm using DeepFUN to describe a yoga-like practice, a peace-based T'ai Chi of mindful fun. In DeepFUN meditations we play games that are for fun so that we can have fun and reconnect to the One Fun that connects us all. We play them mindfully so that we can deepen our understanding of, and connectedness to the flow of fun in our every day lives.

I'm close to happy with my current description of DeepFUN the meditation practice .

Deep Fun the experience is getting as close to flow as possible without taking it seriously. It's fun that occurs in Deep Time, fun that engages us mentally and physically, emotionally and socially, person-to-personally. Fun that redefines fun.

The games played in DeepFUN meditations are not your big-time, Deep Fun-producing kind of games. They are your pointless, scoreless exercises that challenge you to the impossible, and make you laugh. They do not require skills the way tai chi or juggling or running require skills. And yet they quieten the ego, transform the ego, reduce the ego to giggles. And some kind of flow is had by all.

But not the Deep Fun flow that comes only with practice, with familiarity and obstinance and endurance and mastery.

And yet, it is my espoused belief that DeepFUN meditations will get you to Deep Fun, faster. Regardless of the practice or sport or game or craft or hobby.

Deep Fun generally requires total immersion in and commitment to a game (read: job, craft, hobby, community, identity). DeepFUN meditations focus not on the game or the skills required to win, but on the fun.

Deep Fun is a flow state. As such, the balance between challenge and abilities is a relative and changing dynamic. As a novice or as a master, when you become totally engaged, you are in flow. Most informal games, hobbies, etc., are designed to provide Deep Fun for people of a very wide range of abilities. Until they become formal. And then the range decreases, intensifying the challenge so that only the most able arrive at Deep Fun.

I don't think the experience of Deep Fun is different for a novice or a professional. If the person is engaged, if all that person's abilities, whatever their degree, are fully engaged, Deep Fun is what they find. Flow is flow is flow.

However, it is the nature of us and of the games we play that our abilities increase as we play them more, and so we increase the challenge until we find ourselves just this side of competence, and then we see if it's possible to do even better. So we require more and more from our games and ourselves, deeper and deeper challenges, to get back to Deep Fun. And so we grow.

36th Anniversary today. If wealth were love, today I'm a billionaire.

DeepFUN Meditation Classes


DeepFUN meditations help you reconnect with the world, and become “one with the fun.” They are active meditations, involving mind, body, self and community. DeepFUN meditations are fun- and thought-provoking exercises that reconnect you to fun, in the deepest meaning of the word, bringing wholeness and renewal and profound belly laughs.

Each DeepFUN meditation involves three elements: focus, play and reflection. The focus is fun. The play experience is through “pointless games” - actually scoreless – funny fun games that are engaging, safe, and played in a nonjudgmental environment. Each meditation concludes with a process of reflection that is collective, open-ended, highly instructive and also fun.

DeepFUN Meditations are 45 minutes long – just long enough to get released, re-energized, realigned and restored.

DeepFUN Meditation Classes are offered as a series six, 45-minute meditations, meeting twice a week for three weeks. Since each DeepFUN Meditation is different, repeat participation brings more fun, more deeply. The fee for the series is $75. Drop-in is $15.

DeepFUN Meditations are developed and led by Bernie DeKoven, the “Guru of Glee.” Bernie’s exploration of “fun as a spiritual path” has led him to write a book (the Well-Played Game), a website (DeepFUN.com), a curriculum (Interplay), award-winning games, worldwide trainings, and to achieve widespread recognition as a pioneering teacher of fun.

I spent a demeaning day in a Los Angeles Traffic Court, taking three hours to learn that I had somehow already paid $271 for my J-walking ticket.

It was one of those retrospectfully humorous experiences, especially if you enjoy absurdity.

And yet, even this not totally devoid of fun. The judge telling a woman with a screaming two-year old that he would be interested in helping her reach a speedy conclusion. A touch of "we're all people doing our job here" humor even where fun isn't supposed to be..

I was wondering if it was Silly of me not to see the connection between DeepFUN and meditation before this? Was I being so Silly because I wasn't taking DeepFUN Seriously enough? Or Sillily?

Ph'un Ch'i

I wrote the following in response to this posting from John Miller on the DeepFUN Community Board:


As I continue testing the fit between DeepFUN and meditation, I continue to be amazed at the synergy. Meditating on fun has indeed been the focus of my life's work. It's taken a significant portion of my lifetime to acknowledge to myself, let alone to the public, that meditating on fun is also the focus of my teaching.

I stand very much corrected about the war imagery. However, there's something very correct about the fact that Tai Chi is a martial art for peace, and DeepFUN a peaceful art for fun. I don't think it reduces the truth or power of either. It would be nice to think that it somehow makes both more valuable.

Virtual Break Room

There's a passel of free, online, multiplayer board, casino, arcade, card and word games at PlaySite. You don't have to join. You can be as anonymous as you want to be. You communicate via chat. The games range from classic to innovative. And, all in all, a virtually good time can be had by all. In some games there's text commentary to inform you of your progress, and of your opponents' - there's also a ranking system for the more formal competitor.

If I were conducting a virtual retreat, this'd be the break room.

Nobody Gets to Change, the Prequel, Episode 2

In today's Blog from Blogmaster Doc Searls, we find that the good Doc has cited my citation of a quote in which he is quoted.

Which makes me wonder what polite name to give this form of mutual Bloggery: collective-self-referentrialism? bordering on the useless? quits?....

Nobody gets to change

I was reading what the Oaqui had to say about Pointless Games when I came across this in a message from Doc Searls:

"In play, the rule might be this: everybody gets to change"

And it made me think: maybe that's what makes work so often seem so unlike play. At work, nobody gets to change.

In Case You're Asked

DeepFUN arises out of two important philosophical texts: The Well-Played Game and the Purported Utterances of the Oaqui. Both of these texts stress what is commonly called “fun.” Fun is an ancient Oaqui notion designating a form of energy. According to the philosophy of DeepFUN, this energy, fun, flows throughout the body and the community and the world, but can become blocked. According to the Oaqui, one becomes ill when the flow of the fun between body, community and world becomes blocked. The Oaqui recognize/s several means for freeing up the flow of fun. One such is DeepFUN.

In addition to its physical benefits, DeepFUN is said to have certain psychological effects as well. DeepFUN, as a form of meditation, is intended to help one enjoy oneself and to enable one to enjoy others and the world more thoroughly. This latter function is rooted in one's understanding of fun. This comes about through two principal notions: “me” and “we.” Though these two principles are seen as opposites, the one necessarily merges into the other, creating the natural balance of self, community and world, hence:
the classic symbol of DeepFUN. The ME\WE is a roadsign on the Playful Path, where self and community are back to their fundamental, natural harmony.

The ultimate effect of this harmony, according to the Oaqui and DeepFUN, is one's physical, social, ecological, and spiritual well-being.

(with respectful apologies to:)

Playing with Granddaughter Maya on the computer was the next best thing to playing with her on the beach, which was the next best thing to grandparental apotheosis. Here's a collection of online activities for you and the toddling-one, courtesy of 101 Activities to do with your Toddler, courtesy of Smattering

Where, you ask, does one go for the latest in yo-yo and juggling supplies? Try Infinite Illusions, for example, found in the list of Yo-Yo-related links which is on the Yo-Yo website where you can find a page of Yo-Yo basics, courtesy of Hoxie High School somewhere in Kansas. (via Presurfer)

Navaho String Games

If you're in San Jose, please check out these Glow Stones


"With Glow Stones you can build patterns of light. Each Glow Stone can change colors and send signals to the other stones."

at the Imagination Playground ("the place where you makeup the rules") exhibit at The Tech

(thanks David D. Schwartz)

Educafunation Advances

I found my faith in educafuntion restored today when I came across The Big Idea Factory , by way of the ever astute Milk and Cookies.

Try, for example, Spaced Penguins and explore a Child's Introduction to Physics - or at least how we hope our children can be introduced to physics and math and reading and the rest.

On Fun and Getting On With It

This from Rod Kratochwill

Hi,

Frog dad here.

I've been following the fun on the discussion list and just wanted to drop you a note about our 'fun' weekend. My older daughter had an ice skating competition on Friday and we were tailed by some local reporters the whole day. That part wasn't too much fun, but the skating was. The end result was a very nice but moving article in the news paper.

And a nice large photo of Lindsey skating:

My daughter then discovered the camcorder and she and her buddies had a great time 'playing' with the camera. The best portion, with the most FUN, was the girls karaoke dancing to some m&m rap guy :) They danced around in one of the girls father's clothes which made for floppy outfits that didn't stay on very well (fully clothed underneath) and much hilarity. This will be great for embarrassing her later in life.

Keep up the fun work!

Rod

"DeepFUN Meditation is a martial art that is built on fun, rather than war." - anonymous

In today's DeepFUN Discussion Group:

Roger the Reviewer says: "I think of Deep Fun as a social event, which is at odds with how I (primarily) think about meditation."

Bernie, the G of G, responds indirectly: Actually, meditation is taught as a social event, though it's not emphasized. And it's the social environment of being surrounded by co-meditators, that makes meditation class so effective. Each person's stillness helps still everyone else.

And, yes, when you think of DeepFUN as meditation, solitairy play is brought to mind. In fact, I think my first experience of DeepFUN as a solitairy meditation was during a game of Solitaire. And certainly the exploration of the Inner Playground - is a meditation-and-a-half.

But the social phenomenon is indeed the big focus, and the fact that we can take the energy and depth of meditation and practice it in a social environment is perhaps one of the most attractive (to me) aspects of DeepFUN as meditation. To play and be aware of play, to be actively engaged in, for example, searching for the Prui - and, at the same time to be practicing awareness of the play between Silly and Serious, between searching and being found, between yourself and the other - well it deliciously deepens the fun that I hope to share with this world in my lifetime.

One Button Wonders

Roby Baggio's Magical Kicks is a one-button game of surprising complexity. I've been interested in one-button games since the 70s, when Dave Thornburg and I contemplated designing games for people with limited physical abilities, and it's always delightful to discover that the frontiers of one-button wonders continue to expand. (thanks Shikencho)

And so it is claimed that it was the Oaqui who actually put the fun in medifuntation.

A DeepFUN Meditation:

To become one with the fun, or two, or several, the Oaqui frequently recommend/s that you engage in the activity of "Addressing the Inner Frog." (Due to an email virus, the following cannnot be guaranteed to be the instructions as originally trasmitted by the Oaqui.)

1) Find your frog

2) Pretend that everything you're thinking, every word that's flickering through your mind, is being silently spoken by your Frog. Open and close its mouth as if it were a puppet, speaking your lines.

3) Continue until it seems that your Frog is doing all the talking.

4) Introduce yourself.

You know about Walking Meditation? And T'ai Chi? DeepFUN Meditation is another "moving meditation." Only you're playing. And it's fun.

Morning Meditation

Starting at Memepool, when I moused my way to Pseudodictionary.com, I thought this morning's browse was already complete. At last, a site for the Lexifunnograpers of the world to share in the invention of language.

Today's new word:

gifterang - The gift you give someone because you like it and hope she won't so she will give it back to you.

ex. The cordless drill my husband gave me for my birthday was definitely a gifterang.

Noticing a small ad on the bottom of the webpage, before I knew it, I found myself on Bored.com
- a page of links for those times you just want to celebrate your boredom, wherein one just might find the perfect vehicle for the practice of DeepFUN (the meditation).

I was inexorably led to the online, interactive, drawing-and-guessing game of InkLink , and suddenly found hope again for the future of business meetings.

Whereupon I decided to check my email.

A minor compendium of activities that induce an experience of Safe Excitement from The Dull Men's Club

The Thundertube



as found on Cool Sound Effects Instruments

Very cool thing, this playing with sound making things. Worthy of a DeepFUN Meditation or two.

The Fun Nun



You'll Laugh !
You'll Learn !
SISTER M. CHRISTELLE MACALUSO
R.S.M., O.F.N., Ph.D.
Professional Speaker
A Sister of Mercy
Let's Bring Back The Joy


Amen

Yup, DeepFUN Meditation, all right. The more I discuss it with myself, the more obvious it is that that's what we (me, myself and everybody I've played with)'ve been talking about, playing with, perfecting, all this time. The more amazed I am how accurately "meditation" describes the practice of DeepFUN. And how happily they redefine each other.

Hi, Bryan, and thanks for the "Bloop"!

Read more about the sound English scientists say could come from a giant beast lurking in the depths of the ocean.

Mind Toys

Flash fun from Typorganism. More virtual toys from people who believe that type may in fact be an organism. (via Ultimate Insult)

Meditation as described in the Gale Enclyclopedia of Medicine.

Reaching Primal Glee

We've been talking about fun on the DeepFUN community board . Not much of a surprise, that.

Roger Greenaway wrote: "The kind of fun that needs defining or understanding before it can be fully appreciated is probably much less fun than the kind that doesn't."

I replied:

At DeepFUN Retreats we use the word "fun" to describe things that people usually don't think of as having anything to do with fun. We begin including experiences like "flow" and aimless walking, daydreaming and drinking tea, conversing and meditating. As the definition of fun enlarges, so does the sensitivity to fun. It's as if there's a fun-threshhold that begins to lower, or an awareness that begins to strengthen. The result is more fun, more often. And some of the fun is very deep, penetrating, illuminating. And some is remarkably light and slight.

I think, along with the increase in our sensitivity to fun, our general receptivity to fun increases. So we become fun-prone - more aware of, more open to, and more able to have fun when the opportunity presents itself, and create fun when the opportunity has yet to appear.

Now, if you're talking about those moments of irreducibly Primal Glee - http://www.deepfun.com/glee.htm - I agree. I don't think anything can prepare us. On the other hand, I do think that a deeper understanding, that conversation and contemplation, all contribute to the possibility that such moments yet await us.

"DeepFUN Meditations help you set aside worry and doubt and recover the sheer fun of being you, in this world, at this time. You. With your job, and your spouse, in your house."

My words, exactly.

Remind me to tell you about DeepFUN Meditation Classes , both the newness thereof and the potential potentiated thereby. e-me, even.

Sheer Fun - fun so fine you can see right through it.

enenment - what you are left with when you take the light out of enlightenment

The Serious Business of Fun - Engineering Fun into Business Processes.

"Laughter, fun, humor - this constellation of human characteristics played a big part of getting us to where we are today. We need to inject them at every chance possible in the evolution of our organizations, and make them both more human and more humane."

Fun-Diving - a head-long or belly-wide plunge into DeepFUN

DeepFUN Meditation Classes?

Ever since my Dental Awakening, I've been exploring and inventing the art of DeepFUN Meditation.

Today I realized I should probably be teaching DeepFUN Meditation often and everywhere.

First Daughter and New Mother Shael and I we're talking about how important it is, while breastfeeding, to focus, to meditate so that you can be doing and thinking of basically nothing else than you and the baby. And we started talking about how we could make that meditation time a fun time - that there are Playful Ways to inner peace for the mother and deep connection with the infant. And I started thinking about the sheer raw joyous fun that women could be creating for themselves and their infants. And I started thinking about the sheer agony that women create for themselves and their infants.

And I started thinking, yes, DeepFUN Meditation.

ME and WE. Serious and Silly. Yes, and again yes.


Speaking of puzzles, here's a vast collection of ready-to-play Sliding Block Puzzles for the Java-enabled browser. Build your mental pects with hours of sliding and blocking.


Math Puzzles gives those who seek the more abstract fields of play a vast Blog-like compilation of the artful, the logically enticing and the truly challenging.

Making Things Fun

Elyon was giving 4-year-old Maya a bath. It was time to wash her hair and she was at a moment in her life when there was a profound disconnect between "want to" and "have to." She screamed when he poured a container full of water on her head and knocked it out of his hand. Fortunately, there were many containers afloat in the waters of her misery and El could retrieve faster than she could defend. So he made it fun. And Maya started laughing. And her hair got washed.

This is a remarkably useful strategy for getting kids to do what you want them to do, this making things fun.

It works almost as well when you have to get yourself to do what you have to do.

The Oaqui ask/s: if you didn't know what fun is, and suddenly you did, would it make it more fun?

Useless Fun

Uselessness is rarely what it pretends to be. And useless fun often more fun than you'd think.

When looking for a collection of truly Useless fun, try this site for an extensive collection of admirably questionable exercises in uselessness.

See, for example, this virtual meditation toy called A Curious Thingy. (by way of Bored.cc)

"No sense being pessimistic. It wouldn't work anyway." - title quote from Jon Robb's Radio Weblog

The Palos Verdes retreat has been rescheduled. December 1-5. A kind of pre-holiday vacation vacation practice. A lovely time will be had by all, I must say.

Men's Sports - declared manly by the Valenturian Civilization - a "private voluntary network of social organization that recruits and organizes as many people as possible into a global association of member individuals, families, communities, ethnic groups, nations, clubs, businesses and other cultural groups for the purpose of fostering personal freedom and creativity within close community bonds in a society of meaningful roles based on moral values in pursuit of cultural excellence."

Expensive Toys

A reporter was preparing a piece on "expensive toys." Apparently, he couldn't find anyone quotable who thought expensive toys were a "good" thing. Until we talked, I had no idea that I was such a quotable find and so clearly ready to endorse the profligate exuberance of the well-heeled. However, as an official sandwalker, I am all too frequently exposed to the sheer joy that people derive from such spectacularly expensive hobbies as sailsurfing (aka parasurfing).



Actually, I have no idea how much it costs to buy the special board and the harness and especially the special parasail with its inflatable ribs and numerous strings. But I can see why people would pay a lot of money to master a sport that is this challenging, that involves so much of the body and mind, that takes one to such a state health, such depths of fun....

So it turns out that yours truly, the GG himself, is an appreciator and even an advocate of toys for the rich and the public play therewith. If the toy can bring you to that profound of a state of fun, and you can possibly afford it, I say, by all means, unless you can borrow or rent it, buy it.

Echo Yourself

Today Elyon discovered that if you call your land line on your cell phone (or vice versa) and you talk to yourself, you get an echo!

Answer: Getting into DeepFUN at Wainwright

Question: "what could you be doing the evening of October 15th and/or Wednesday, October 16th?"

Tongue Tricks

On those days when you suddenly rediscover your tongue - here's an inspiring collection of Tongue Tricks (found on the Limber Tongue Gallery by Delicious Daughter-in-law Julie who, with my two Gorgeous Grandaughters and Sacred Son Elyon, are here from Holland to celebrate Wife-of-my-Life's milestone birthday; on Tongue Page 99, which we found cited on The Ultimate Insult )

Released the Release. May the Beguine have begun.

"For every Way there's a way of following that Way that's fun" - from the purported utterances of the Oaqui

The Amazing Skeleton Puppet

You can only pull one virtual string at a time, but the movement, the movement! (found on Weird Links)

Search-Engine Games

And then, of course, there's Browser Golf.

And why not? (link courtesy of Kottke.org)

Tag Ban

This is a story about a principal banning the game of Tag.

===

"This is all based on safety," said Samarge, also in her third year as school principal. "It has nothing to do with anything else except to reduce injuries for the kids."

But there was that statement in the school newsletter that seemed to trigger the debate. In the third paragraph of an article titled "Safety on the Playground," the piece reads: "The running part of this activity is healthy and encouraged; however, in this game, there is a 'victim' or 'It,' which creates a self-esteem issue. The oldest or biggest child usually dominates."

===

Oh, the humanity!

Here's a mother's response from the same story:

"Take it from someone who was teased mercilessly about her name, was overweight as a child and low on everybody's birthday invite list--I would have given my eyeteeth to be included in a game of tag. It or not It, being included with a group of kids in a playground game would have been heaven." The ban has been the focus of at least one radio talk show in which callers blasted Samarge's decision for about an hour. The idea that being "it," the one player everyone runs from to avoid being tagged and becoming the next "it," somehow damages a child's self-esteem struck many listeners as preposterous."

Labels:

Kinder Gardens - Google search results for "Designing children's gardens with playgrounds" This is one of the best trends I know of in the design of children's playspaces.

Articles on healing humor by Paul E. McGhee

e.g.: "Humor provides a sense of control over the stress that goes along with battling cancer by giving you more control over your daily mood. It helps you sustain an upbeat, optimistic frame of mind, even on the bad days. This more positive emotional state helps give you the resilience you need to cope with the next problem thrown your way. A good belly laugh also boosts your energy level on the days when you don't want to even get out of bed. This is especially important, since most survivors experience fatigue as a result of their cancer treatment. Finally, humor and laughter provide a means of "letting go" of the anger and anxiety that build up on your worst days.

"Laughter also reduces muscle tension. This muscle relaxation, and the easing of psychological tension that accompanies it, is the main goal of all stress management techniques, and clearly accounts for much of the stress-reducing power of humor."

Jabberwacky
(thanks Shikencho)

Had to postpone the Wainwright weekend. I weep for the unfortunate five who knew enough to sign up and who must now continue slogging through the conceptual swamps of New England before they reach the Playful Trailhead of DeepFUN, sometime in October. Slog on, o playful few.

Play Fully

Yesterday, I was writing about the Playful Path - my recentmost obsession. I was working on the PR piece, listing all the "callings" that could benefit from following such a path - you know: the playful teacher, the playful architect, the playful gardener, the playful therapist. And then I thought of firefighters, and then of the police and military, and then of doctors and dentists. And I wasn't so sure I wanted them to be following this Playful Path. Playful Firefighters?

On the other hand, I spent a week with firefighters exploring the Playful Path, and we reached genuine heights of playfulness, and we saw that it was very good.

Because, I guess, there's so much more to firefighting than holding down a high-pressure hose. There's living together and working together and the profound joy of risking together and winning together.

And then I realized that it's the path that is playful, not necessarily the player. That to stay on the Playful Path, you merely have to play, fully.

Mouseworthy Mathematics

Click this for some mouseworthy mathematics! O, dance geometric! O fun fascination. (also by way of The Presurfer).

For a taste of the joyously potential application of funology to such things as the rote memorization of such things as the chemical elements, see The Elements - as sung by Tom Lehrer, as animatedly illustrated by Mike Stanfil. (by way of The Presurfer). O, ye educators, watch and learn!

Why Did Laughter Evolve?- seriously, why?

Here's what the Oaqui has/ve to say:

"it is likely that the sound people make when they laugh is a genetic memory of the actual sound of the Big Banging: reminding them thereby of the infinite humor of it all when it was all for fun."

Sent out 5465 DeepFUN Retreat brochures.

My first half-mass mailing.

My blessings on the trees and energy consumed to spread word of the Playful Path.

Updated Press Release from version 3.0.

Please don't ask me why it's version 4.03 and not 5.0 or 3.7C.

I appreciate.


Press Release 4.03

For Immediate Release
Contact Bernie at: 310 792 7227
DeKoven Reveals the “Playful Path”

(LOS ANGELES) – “Enough with the fear, all ready,” proclaims Bernie DeKoven, the self-proclaimed Guru of Glee, “it’s time to get back on the road to love, health, and happiness – to a better, truer path than we were on before 9/11. A more fun path. And I can get you there in five, maybe six days.”
His secret?

He calls it: “Fun"

“During my DeepFUN retreats," DeKoven explains, "you play games and create games and talk about games until you discover how playful you really are.
“Spending five, maybe six days together, as adults, in open, pointless, conscious, conspicuous, intimate, spontaneous fun; you inevitably discover how much better you are at being playful now than you were before 9/11, when you were kids,” DeKoven continues. “And you find yourselves beyond fear, once more on a Playful Path. And once there, there you tend to stay, because the Playful Path is the shortest road to love, health and happiness.

“Living a Playful Path is a spiritually inclusive process. You can be on almost any path, and be on it more deeply and more happily by pursuing it more Playfully. I know of Playful Nuns and Playful Teachers, Playful Parents, Playful Christians, Playful Managers, Playful Artists, Playful Engineers and Playful Gardeners.

“This first round of DeepFUN Retreats,” DeKoven admits, “is going to be very Deeply Fun for me, my first public journey on the Playful Path. Each one different. Each one a different setting and audience (Esalen, Malibu, Santa Barbara, Palos Verdes). Each with its own revelations about the nature of learning and living a Playful Path. I'll be recording what I learn on my Weblog (http://www.deepfun.com/weblog), and ultimately in the inevitable book.”

DeepFUN Retreats are conducted in cooperation with retreat centers that offer comfortable accommodations in a peaceful, natural setting, and serve thoughtfully prepared food.

The schedule of DeepFUN Retreats is posted on Bernie’s DeepFUN.com website.

Bernie DeKoven became the Guru of Glee by developing and implementing events involving the playful participation of groups of all ages and sizes, from couples and families to schools and communities. The city of Philadelphia used his Interplay Curriculum, a comprehensive program in self-esteem and social skills based on over 1000 children's games. For the Philadelphia Bicentennial, he designed and orchestrated Playday on the Parkway, a community games event involving hundreds of thousands of celebrants. He established The Games Preserve, a retreat center in Eastern Pennsylvania where teachers, therapists, counselors and recreators conducted in-depth investigations of games and play. In his book, The Well Played Game, he voiced a philosophy of "healthy competition" that formed the core teachings of the New Games Foundation. He became co-director of the Foundation, and led the development of an internationally successful program in facilitating collaborative games and events. Bernie has designed award-winning games for major toy and educational software companies including Mattel and Children’s Television Workshop.

Bernie is a Professional Member of the Association for Humanistic Psychology and a Lifetime Member of the Association for the Study of Play.

See his DeepFUN website – http://www.deepfun.com – for more.

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This, today, at this time, via email, from the Oaqui:

The Playful Path that is best for you is the one that keeps the best of you in play.

I was delighted to learn that the Oaqui is/are ready to share insights with us about the true nature of the Playful Path. Given their/her/his role in engineering the entire PP infrastructure, I was finding myself perplexed at his/her/their heretofore silence.

Searching for Playful Path (cont'd)


This morning's findings: Paco Sagasta's Playful Universe.

I left a message on the DeepFUN group requesting others to join me on this Search for Playful Path. It'll be interesting to see what others find both playful and sufficiently pathish.

Isn't That Neat?

Eleven plus two = Twelve plus one

Is a true anugram according to Wordsmith.org - meaning that if you smush the letters around enough, eleven plus two becomes twelve plus one. And it's numbers!

Searching for "Playful Path" (cont'd)



"The Playful Search for Beauty," says 95-year-old Eva Zeisel, is how she would best describe her work. "If you're doing this because you have something to give, it doesn't matter how old you are--you're just going to keep doing it."

Ocean Soccer



Taught to me by a 7-year-old boy on the beach

Equipment:
One floaty ball
One ocean

Kick ball into the ocean.
Wait until the wave kicks it back to you.
Kick ball back into ocean.


World Toe Wrestling

It is with great relief that I learn: "A player may, if the agony becomes too great, surrender by calling out the words 'Toe Much'. The winning player must then release their toe hold immediately.

A sign of the proximity of a Playful Path or two.

More Laughter Magic

In "Laughter eases hospital pain" we learn "Medical experts in the USA found laughter helped children relax, which had a major impact on how they dealt with and accepted pain. They believe the healing power of humour can reduce pain and stimulate immune function in children with cancer, Aids or diabetes and in children receiving organ transplants and bone marrow treatments."

Browsing for "playful path"

Browsing for "playful path" as I seem to be doing of late, I wandered across the EncycloZine , "a compendium of arts, history, humanities / science, space, nature, technology, web design, & eluzions, with an emphasis on book recommendations." I clicked on "All Sorts of Games" and found, well, all sorts of games. Enough sorted sorts to spend a mondominute sorting through.

Like for example a page of Paper and Pencil games that even includes Sprouts.

Amusing all. And then there's the massive collection of Illusions. Many paths to playfulness, indeed.

Not to mention the Kitten Burger Electronic Latin Jazz Keyboard amongst the several many playful somethings from The Webshite.

And today's goes to:

Head Travel


Dave's - graduate school, University of Virginia - head, in slices, from front to back.

Link courtesy of the Mikes Weblog

Happiness Happens

Luke Barber, a correspondent in the DeepFUN discussion group, writes:

Being a person on the path that has sought to find the path that leads to the playful path, one might think that I would be able to offer some answer to this interesting query.

However, I must admit to total confusion about things making sense when it comes to trying to figure where paths lead, whether they might could all lead the same place, and whether that place might be a "place" called "happiness." That's way too much to try to figure out.

I used to say that trying to define happiness is a little like trying to nail jello to a barn door. Trying to find happiness, meaning, or any of those other fine ends in life is like trying to nail the barn to the jello. I did figure on this stuff for a long while, however. I figered. . . I figered. . . I figered. . . and I figered . . . and I just couldn't figure it out. So, I gave up figuring about what I was seeking or where my path might or should lead. And, in surrendering the figuring it was almost as if the "answer" was -- in a sense --revealed to me. Simple: Stop trying to figure life out and just love life. Which means love deeply and love play. However, not just to seek it, rather to BE it.

I know it has been said "seek and ye shall find;" however, I think that "find and ye shall find" is a whole lot more dependable. Play is found in the present moment. When we seek laughter, fun, and play in our lives we can become a little like a desperate loved. Better not to seek, but to find play right where it is. Like right now. I am just playing with this response to Bernie's question all the while knowing that if I actually KNEW what I was talking about I would be struck dumb immediately. However, it has been DeeplyFun trying to answer you, Bernie.

Peace, Luke


Bernie poetically replies:

Happiness happens.

Like rain happens. And the tide happens.

Happiness is a season and a reason for being that has little to do with you or me or my thoughts or your thoughts or anything we can do about them.

And the only way we have to find happiness requires us to be there when it happens. Fully present and at our best.

The more playful we are, the more likely it is that we're present enough to recoginize happiness. The more fun we have the more likely that we'll embrace happiness. The more profoundly playul, the more deeply fun, the more likely we are to be fully there, fully at our best, so happiness can happen to us.


Today, via the Oaqui:

"Health is a lot like fun: you rarely know when you’re having it, you do know when you’re not, and you don’t do anything about it until you have to."

Paving Stones get play



Paving stones designed after Escher tesselations. Another point for playfulness.

(thanks Boing Boing)

Rocky's In-Car Stress-Release Technique

"Sometimes when I'm rushing and feeling very tense and am in the car I start laughing, real hard, forced laughter: Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! And if I keep doing it for about 30 seconds I really start laughing. It's fun. And ridiculous. And very nice. Except maybe for the person in the next car."

Overheard at an Albertsons:

She: It seems like humor and happiness are all you have left anymore.
Me: And if you don't have one, you lose the other.

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Then there's G-Max Skateboarding as found on the Milk and Cookies Game Collection

The Playful You is probably the best You you can be. It certainly is the most fun.

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Decided today that to be an official Guru of Glee one has to own a DeepFUN hat. A newly edited version of On Being the Guru of Glee appeared shortly thereafter.

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DeepFUN and the Environment

Every Playful Path (and/or Way) is environmentally friendly. In fact, it is even more than friendly. The Playful Path is an environmental lover. A courter and supporter, embracing the natural world.

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Press Release 4.03

For Immediate Release
Contact Bernie at: 310 792 7227
DeKoven Reveals the “Playful Path”

(LOS ANGELES) – “Enough with the fear, all ready,” proclaims Bernie DeKoven, the self-proclaimed Guru of Glee, “it’s time to get back on the road to love, health, and happiness – to a better, truer path than we were on before 9/11. A more fun path. And I can get you there in five, maybe six days.”
His secret?

He calls it: “The Playful Path'"

“During my DeepFUN retreats," DeKoven explains, "you play games and create games and talk about games until you discover how playful you really are.
“Spending five, maybe six days together, as adults, in open, pointless, conscious, conspicuous, intimate, spontaneous fun; you inevitably discover how much better you are at being playful now than you were before 9/11, when you were kids,” DeKoven continues. “And you find yourselves beyond fear, once more on a Playful Path. And once there, there you tend to stay, because the Playful Path is the shortest road to love, health and happiness.

“Living a Playful Path is a spiritually inclusive process. You can be on almost any path, and be on it more deeply and more happily by pursuing it more Playfully. I know of Playful Nuns and Playful Teachers, Playful Parents, Playful Christians, Playful Managers, Playful Artists, Playful Engineers and Playful Gardeners.

“This first round of DeepFUN Retreats,” DeKoven admits, “is going to be very Deeply Fun for me, my first public journey on the Playful Path. Each one different. Each one a different setting and audience (Esalen, Malibu, Santa Barbara, Palos Verdes). Each with its own revelations about the nature of learning and living a Playful Path. I'll be recording what I learn on my Weblog (http://www.deepfun.com/weblog), and ultimately in the inevitable book.”

DeepFUN Retreats are conducted in cooperation with retreat centers that offer comfortable accommodations in a peaceful, natural setting, and serve thoughtfully prepared food.

The schedule of DeepFUN Retreats is posted on Bernie’s DeepFUN.com website.

Bernie DeKoven became the Guru of Glee by developing and implementing events involving the playful participation of groups of all ages and sizes, from couples and families to schools and communities. The city of Philadelphia used his Interplay Curriculum, a comprehensive program in self-esteem and social skills based on over 1000 children's games. For the Philadelphia Bicentennial, he designed and orchestrated Playday on the Parkway, a community games event involving hundreds of thousands of celebrants. He established The Games Preserve, a retreat center in Eastern Pennsylvania where teachers, therapists, counselors and recreators conducted in-depth investigations of games and play. In his book, The Well Played Game, he voiced a philosophy of "healthy competition" that formed the core teachings of the New Games Foundation. He became co-director of the Foundation, and led the development of an internationally successful program in facilitating collaborative games and events. Bernie has designed award-winning games for major toy and educational software companies including Mattel and Children’s Television Workshop.

Bernie is a Professional Member of the Association for Humanistic Psychology and a Lifetime Member of the Association for the Study of Play.

See his DeepFUN website – http://www.deepfun.com – for more.

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And this elegant little game called SFCave, called to our attention by the stalwart linkers at zFilter.

And here is what could only be called a bizarre collection of playlike activities only bordering on game.

Next time you find yourself needing to explain to someone why cows have legs, you'll be thankful you have access to Why Cows Have Legs, a piece of silliness from Jason Tammemagi, who is obviously familar with the Playful Path. (found on Everlasting Blort)

Rolling Walls

A relaxed phone conversation led Joyce (you know who you are) and myself to discussing "Walls with Wheels" for the ultimate in user-responsive housing design. Joyce (the personal/business advisor) started raving admirably about adjustable shelves. "Do you have adjustable shelves? she asked. "When," she continued, "did you last adjust them."

As your Guru of Glee I must comment that having the desire and/or need for adjustible shelving is a good indication that you are already on a powerfully playful path.

May even your refrigerator have casters. And may your casters roll smoothly. And may you never need to know it.

G¿G

from "Laughing your way to the good life":

Says Kathleen Lyons, founder of the Society for Ladies Who Laugh Out Loud :

"We all want to live well. I promise you if you add some belly laugh leisure to your life, you will live well."

Other pithy quotes from and about the Society Lady:

"Laughter is like human crazy glue. It changes the way we connect to people."

"In another funky exercise that had the audience waving colorful scarves and chanting 'I. Have. So much. To do,' Lyons got people laughing at themselves, probably because many in the audience felt it was true."

"Her work is spurred by memories of playfulness from childhood - one tale told of a second-grade report card that noted 'Kathy has quite a sense of humor. She will have to watch out for that.' The memories are augmented by a longing to know not only where that playfulness was lost, but how to recapture it. "

"We need the resume. We need the money. We need the positions. We need to support ourselves," Lyons said. "We all want to live well. I promise you if you add some belly laugh leisure to your life, you will live well."

Compose Yourself

Frequency Mixer turns your keyboard into a sound/rhythm mixer of playworthy depth. (link courtesy of The Ultimate Insult)

dogmonkephantbra

Switcheroo Zoo - morph a zebra's head into that of a dog's, the tail into a monkey's, the feet into an elephant's - and that's what you get. Watching the morph is almost as fun as creation itself.

"A Playful Path is the shortest road to happiness."

The Oaqui

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Department of Lovely Little Virtual Games that are Almost Good Enough to Take Seriously

The Orisinal Collection

Spiritual Jumprope

For a moment, on the beach again, it actually seemed like God and I were swinging a jumprope, increasingly delighted by reality's agility.

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Busting Water Balloons in Space is a good example of how often following a playful path leads to learning something new. There's something innately fun about getting to see the effects of bursting a water balloon in space. Interesting. Inviting curiousity and experimentation. (via zFilter )

While there's something that makes you wonder about a playful path that leads people to playing Remote Control. On the other hand, I am sure there'll be major learnings resulting from putting major life decisions in hands of the anonymous many. (via BoingBoing)

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Shiny Mud Balls

thank you Oblomovka

Odd Todd Sound Board click often for echo.

South Park Studio - click art.

and Udder Insanity click more often.

by way of Milk and Cookies

Deep Fun and a Playful Path


There are many ways to respond to the given moment. You can respond rationally, emotionally, physically, socially, artfully, seriously, sillily. Playfulness is yet another way to respond.

And whoever choses to respond playfully, most often and most...um...playfully can be said to be a "follower of a Playful Path."

What is odd, especially to those of us who have, from time to time, walked that very same Playful Path to which I herein alude, is that people would choose any other way to experience the world. Why would you not want to follow a Playful Path? What other path is better designed to take you to happiness? What greater guide to happiness than fun and creativity, spontaneity and responsiveness, laughter and healing?

DeepFUN is a kind of whole person, whole community, whole society, whole world yoga - a set of exercises and studies to help develop mastery of a Playful Path.

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funguide

Defunnication:

A runner passes two people strolling down the beachway. "Hey you guys," she yells, "you're on the bike path. You should get over to the pedestrian side." Heeding this helpful warning, the two amblers look around. In either direction, as far as the eye can see, there are no bikes. Or rollerbladers or boarders. Nobody on wheels at all.

Go figure.

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Eric Snyder writes: "As I was reading your blog about frisbee golfing, I thought... "now there's a pesticide free, environmentally friendly sport.". Then, your search for "compelling reason".... Here's a compelling reason.... What if your game invention process looked at ways of converting environmentally damaging games into environmentally friendly games. eg. golf -> frisbee golf.... [no clubs, no shoes, no golf course required ] This could be a useful and "fun" way of sensitizing people to their unintended impacts on the environment."

I guess this is another thing I like about the beach and the play therearoundabouts - it's an environment that keeps renewing itself - all the castles and excavations getting built and then washed away for the next day's generation of players. My guess is that as long as a game stays a game (unofficial, unregulated) it has a good chance of staying environmentally friendly. Games like halfball and stoopball are built to respond to the existing environment rather than creating their own.

Once a game gets "officialized," the game starts taking over the environment. Halfball and streetball become baseball. Wallball becomes squash. Even Frisbee Golf has courses and holes.

The key to environmentally friendly sports, I think, is to keep them informal, unofficial. Once things get to the point where they can be commercialized, it's too late.

I guess the best we can do for the environment is to keep inventing more games, keep making new games out of the old.

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Of Games and Sports

Here's an article about "The United States Perforated Plastic Baseball Association" sent to me by Joey Grey of the similarly inclined Ultimate Players Association .

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On Fun and Happiness

Fun can teach you how to find happiness. All you have to do is know how to learn from it.

I'm thinking that that's precisely why I developed the practice of DeepFUN. That the magic of the whole DeepFUN voyage is that creating fun, consciously, is the best way to learn how to create happiness.

I'm thinking also that that's maybe what I forgot to tell you.

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The Plight of the Publicly Playful

Yesterday on a bench on the beach: As I was putting my shoes on, I was joined by an Asian man wearing Lederhosen and a feathered, bebuttoned hat. I was stunned and inspired by his brazen silliness and made my admiration known to him. He took out a flask and asked me if I wanted some whiskey. I declined. He explained that it really wasn't whiskey, but some kind of chocolate drink. Then he offered me a cigarette, which I also declined. He appeared a bit more distraught than indicated by his generousity or costume. After a moment's prompting, he explained to me that a couple of "surfer kids" had thrown a cigarette lighter at him as he biked by. He had picked up the lighter and returned it to them, and an apparently minor, but disturbing altercation ensued. Eight miles later, he was still in that moment. So, here was this person, a veritable standard-bearer for frivolity, spiritually sickened by a couple of kids who couldn't accept the power of his public playfulness. Much commiseration ensued. We gifted each other deeply.

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Department of Artful Internet Technologies

courtesy of son and mentor Elyon, Kartoo - a graphic metasearch engine. Type your search term into the blank at the top of the page and behold the cunningly contrived connections.

Pencil Spinning

courtesy of PenTix

PaPa iNk - "the International Children's Art Archive, is a non-profit dedicated to collecting and preserving children's art and reinjecting children's creative spirit into human discourse."



...demonstrating how much we can learn from children about the fun of art and the art of fun.

via Subterranean Notes.

Laughter, Cont'd

Yesterday, sacred wife Rocky and delightful friend Robin and I were sitting on the beach, practicing laughing. Rocky had told us about her discovery of the healing power of Laughing While Driving and was demonstrating her deep-belly-frustration-release laugh.

It's an amazing gift, this ability to make ourselves laugh, even without the aid of anything particularly fun. It's healing, releasing, and probably the closest thing we have to being able to tickle ourselves.

This led me to scouring the web for more on laughter therapy. Which led me to this quote:

"A woman came to me at a workshop and said, after some crying, that she'd like to be able to laugh about her ovarian cancer. I suggested that she say 'I have ovarian cancer, tee hee.' The 'tee hee' was up in her head and it didn't make her laugh. So then I suggested that we move down her body's energy centers. We started with "I have ovarian cancer, heh, heh.' That came from her throat and it, too, brought no response. She continued: 'I have ovarian cancer, ha, ha.' Nothing. We finally reached the actual area of her ovaries. "I have ovarian cancer, ho, ho.' With that she'd hit the tension area around her ovaries. The idea, the whole thing, was so playfully painful that it triggered her laughter. Soon she was laughing spontaneously and feeling much better, specifically about her cancer. Charlie Chaplin believed that the formula for laughter was to take pain and play with it. This is the method I use to help people laugh about the unlaughable."

from the Laughter Therapy website (www.teehee.com) of Dr. Annette Goodheart.

Pursuing this theme led me to Rx Laughter - a "nonprofit comedy Therapeutic Entertainment, Research and Health Education project in our 3rd year at the UCLA Jonsson Cancer Center, the Mattel UCLA Children’s Hospital & the UCLA Neuropsychiatric Institute & Hospital. This is the first project ever to use humor as a healer for seriously ill children and adolescents and in this large and long-term scope and design."

This is pretty much definitely going to be a new component of my DeepFUN Retreats, if it isn't already.

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