Toaster, Iwo Jima, Last Supper

by Bernie DeKoven on November 2, 2011

For this and the next game, you should have more than 6 and fewer than 30 people to play with. If you have more, you should consider breaking into two groups, both playing simultaneously. Fewer, you should maybe consider something else.

People stand in a circle. Whoever wants to be IT first is.

IT is in the center.

IT turns to any person in the circle and says something like “Toaster.”

As everyone knows from the rule-explaining-and-practice session that has begun the game, if you are selected, you put your hand out, in Toaster-handle-position. The person next to you, towards whom your hand is extended, presses your hand down, whereupon you squat, tick for a bit, and pop-up, in a satisfying toaster-like manner. You have the choice of extending having your handle on the left or right, so that you can, should you be so moved, surprise your erstwhile partner.

IT then turns to someone else, again saying something like “Toaster.” Or, perhaps, “Iwo Jima.”

In the Iwo Jima instance, the person being pointed out assumes the position of the flag holder, the person to that person’s right, the position of the flag planter, and the person to the flag holder’s left the flag reacher, to render an image somewhat reminiscent of the classic image (though there are actually 6 flag-raisers, indicating yet further possibilities).

Whoever does the thing that appears clearly to be wrong becomes IT for the next round.

Then there’s Last Supper. This involves as many as 13 players (or as few as 3). The person in the middle assumes the position of the Divinity. The people on the right and left any position they think mirrors that of someone in the painting. There’s clearly a lot of leeway allowed, since no one really remembers the whole painting. However, should further exploration and position-definition be desired, all attempts should be made pursue this until perfection is reached, or the pointless of perfection made sufficiently vivid.

Chinese Dragon

As the game progresses, players should be invited to create more configurations – involving one, two, three, four or all players. Draw freely from TV shows (Charlie’s Angels), historical paintings (Spirit of 76), abstract art (Guernica), or perhaps a whole-group Chinese Dragon, as illustrated (developed by the significantly playful folk at the DiGRA conference in 2011). Be careful not to get carried away in conceptual configuration lest you exceed the collective figure-making competencies of the group.

On the other hand, pointless is as pointless does.


A Playful Path photoA playful path is the shortest road to happiness.
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