Nomological Net

Stray thoughts from here and there. The occasional concern for construct validity. No more logic. Fish.

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faults in the clouds of delusion

Friday, January 26, 2007

The hippest game I ever invented

and we never even gave it a name.

It happened some time during rehearsals. Act 1 Scene 1, midway through, C and I had to step to the rear and pretend we were discussing something while other stuff went on up front. At first C was happy to pretend we were peeing on the College walls. Then we decided to take things to the next level. So off we'd shuffle to the back, and the negotiations would begin.

C: Whose call?
I: Yours.
C: Oh, ok. Let's see, hmmm, 1 club.
I: 1 heart.
C: 2 diamonds.
I: 2 hearts.
C: 3 clubs.
I: Pass.
C: Pass?! WTF do you mean "pass"? I thought we had a game there.
I: Hardly, man. I had nothing but a few hearts.
C: But you made two forward going bids.
I: Yes but I left you on your main suit. We don't go down so much this way.
C: Okay, okay, your deal now.

All this, of course, with not a card in sight. (Except maybe, in retrospect, the jokers.) Very hip.

******

Side comment 1.

I love the word hip. It originates from the the West African Wolof words "hepi", which means "to see", and "hipi", "to open ones eyes". The deeper connotation is that of knowledge, insight, and being in the know. Indeed, the word for one who has access to such knowledge is "hepikat" -- the source of the term "hip cat", from which Louis Armstrong popularized the term "cat". Two other Wolof words that made it into the lingo are: dega - "to understand" - dig, and jev - "to disparage or talk falsely" - jive. Brilliant, isn't it? I got this from "Hip: The History", by John Leland.

Side comment 2.

It was during those same rehearsal sessions that we (A and I, while C was off taking a break from being hip to be cool with the ladies instead) invented another game, which consisted of trying to guess a famous person's name within 20 attempts, under a time limit. We played the game a few times and liked it; then thrashed around for a satisfactory name. Finally A suggested - with no justification whatsoever - Tintoretto. The sheer randomness made the name stick, and the game definitely had more mass appeal than the one C and I devised. So A and I debuted Tintoretto at the College festival the next year. And that was that, or so I thought, and so I was very pleasantly surprised to hear the game mentioned on 2x3x7 (I think) a few months ago. Cool :-)

A was the first guy up the wooden staircase that had been built along the outside of the building as part of the set for the play. He charged up to the top, looked over, paused, then declaimed: "I came here to do susside, now I think I'll only do susu by the side."

9 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hm, "hip" = "knowledge/insight". I think you would like Scott Adams' observations on the ass-brain connection.

And when you shift your weight, as Adams describes, from one butt cheek to the other, is that "hip-hop"?

About your other game, you didn't invent it, except maybe for the time limit part -- we used to call it "twenty questions" as a kid (and the questions need to be answerable by "yes" or "no"). Did your version dispense with the limit on number of questions, in exchange for the time limit?

1/26/2007 8:34 PM  
Blogger km said...

Eugene Ionesco would have *loved* that card game.

Yeah, I dig a pony and cats. Thanks for the Wolof gyaan.

(Looks like our NYC meeting is gonna have to wait till - what - spring or summer?)

1/26/2007 11:49 PM  
Anonymous Ph said...

Ah the good days. A blog meet in NYC? Sounds like trouble.

1/27/2007 11:13 AM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

rahul:
au contraire, that scott adams piece is *so* unhip. he just tries too hard sometimes.

you're right that tintoretto was based on twenty questions, but it was sufficiently different to be distinguishable as an entity of its own. of course, the exact details of how it was different are lost to me now. i might have mis-stated the twenty attempts coda. and it's possible that the scoring was based on the time taken to arrive at the answer. and the set of permissible responses also included a few other options such as "irrelevant".

km:
thanks :-D
i agree, pity about the meeting.

ph:
naah, not a formal meet or anything -- it's just that km and i have missed each other by a few dozen miles several times over the last few months, the last such occasion being the evening before he ducked the dishwasher.

1/27/2007 1:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You could answer "irrelevant"? Couldn't that be used ambiguously? I can see myself never losing by strategically using and defending that answer.

1/28/2007 1:21 AM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

true. that's why it was best played with a 'quizmaster'.

1/28/2007 7:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, but an irrelevant never forgets.

1/29/2007 1:59 AM  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

brilliant :-D

1/29/2007 7:31 AM  
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