One of the weirdest parts about the COVID-19 quarantine is the total and complete shutdown of sports and games. We are confined to small physical spaces not conducive to traditional game playing and therefore devoid of healthy competition.
But necessity is the mother of invention, right? So we put our heads together (socially distanced!) and came up with some new games and sports that you can play while stuck in your studio apartment.
It takes a lot less than COVID-19 to inspire me to invent a word game—the more absurdist the better. Just ask my cousin, with whom I originated a game where you write nonsensical phrases on a small shred of paper, then fold it up and pass it to the other person(s). Think: banana nosebleed, lollipop tonymander, wispy biscuits, and so on.
So, from the creative minds that brought you Oh Yeah? I’ll Smash Your Face on the Eiffel Tower, I am proud to present the newest craze, QuatreFOILED. Gameplay requires two to an infinite number of players, and can be executed individually or in teams. The rules are simple: name an iconic group of four, replacing one party with a party from another iconic group. For example:
For your efforts, you are awarded no points, and everyone in the room is now dumber for having played. But ya know what? It beats the hell out of spreading coronavirus!
Guys, I have the worst idea. It’s a(nother) game that my sister invented. You know, the same filly who brought you Oh Yeah? I’ll Smash Your Face on the Eiffel Tower and QuatreFOILED.
This one is called “Where’s Kelaine?”
The game is for two or more players, but one of them must be me, and the others must be people whose approval and attention I seek at a young, impressionable age.
To play, I simply walk around and interact with the other players normally.
All other players look past and through me, asking each other “Do you hear something?” or “What’s that sound?” I grow increasingly frustrated, dejected, and depressed while other players snicker and giggle in their superiority. There is no winner, but there is a clear loser, and it is me, broken, defeated, and harboring suppressed rage until the quarantine ends.
Clearly, supermarkets are not within your living spaces, not to mention that they are far too essential right now for fun and games. But you remember the old Supermarket Sweep, right? During lockdown, you can still play! Get a couple roommates, or video link with friends, and log on to Target or Amazon or another online superstore. See who can run up the biggest bill in five minutes. Just make sure you don’t check out by accident!
You know that carnival game with the soda bottles all lined up in a crate, and you toss rings around them to win a prize? This game can be replicated using hair ties and beauty products. Push all your serums, hair sprays, and moisturizer together, step back, and toss your hair ties onto the bottles to see if you can loop around any! Any bottles or things with narrow necks around the house—cleaning products, etc. can also be used.
Don’t have long hair? Don’t worry! You can use regular rubber bands instead! The prize you win? Self-satisfaction. And also a little guilt for realizing you have too many serums/hair sprays/beauty products.
Recognizing a pattern of quarantine complaints on social media? Print out your bingo board and start stamping.
Stuck inside with your boo-thing for the next two weeks? I suggest you try a little game called Hide the Salami.
There are a million ways to play, but every game starts the same way. First, both players need to establish affirmative consent. It’s no fun if both players don’t want to participate! For example, ask your game partner something like “Hey XXXX, want to play Hide the Salami?” If they respond with something along the lines of “Yeah, YYYY. I do,” move on to the next step (but remember, both players have the right to change their minds, mid-game).
Second, someone needs to whip out their salami. Don’t get caught up on gender norms, Hide the Salami is fun for all couples! Remember, men aren’t the only ones who have salamis, or hide them. You’re more than welcome to use a salami substitute like a cucumber, or even a plastic or silicon replica, if you have one lying around!
Third, figure out what kind of gameplay works best for you. If you’re both new to the game, if it’s been a while since you’ve played, or maybe you have a webinar in 15 minutes, I’d suggest The Quickie. If you’re more experienced at HtS, and you don’t have lower back problems, give Reverse Cowgirl a whirl! If you’re a longtime player, and looking to spice it up, try the Cleveland Steamer! This game CAN be played in small groups, but it is strongly recommended everyone involved have a frank and honest discussion about boundaries and expectations before extending gameplay beyond two participants.
Fourth, let the games begin! Here’s a description of a common way to play…
Hide the Salami: Two Person, Doggy Style
1) Take your salami or substitute out of the refrigerator, cabinet, pantry, or drawer where you keep it.
2) Determine who’s The Hider and who’s The Finder.
3) The Finder closes their eyes.
4) The Hider places the salami somewhere in the apartment or house.
5) They are not allowed to place it anywhere a dog could not reasonably be expected to find it (below waist height on a human, not inside anything you need thumbs to open, etc.).
6) The Finder opens their eyes, then searches for the salami.
7) They must crawl on all fours and are only allowed to use their “paws” and mouth to search, like they are a dog.
8) The round is over when The Finder either discovers the salami or gives up. (Note: To give up while playing Doggy Style, The Finder must bark!)
Play as many rounds, in as many different versions of the game as you’d like! When you’ve reached the point neither participant wants to play another round, it’s time to end the game!
To end a game of Hide the Salami, simply place the salami (or substitute) back in the place where you keep it.
Then fuck on the kitchen floor.