The dapper New Yorker that feels like staying-in for the evening has a few standard options. One can choose to huddle alone with some wine and a marathon of TV’s Mythbusters (The myth that a single person can’t drink two bottles of wine and finish off the vermouth that’s been lying around for two years = BUSTED). Another might gussy up the banquet table and invite a cadre of friends over for a dinner-party. Eating? Haven’t we evolved beyond that?
Our new trend has been lifted right from the poshest retirement communities and sexiest church youth-groups in the land: Game Night. Being the beneficent Barfly that we are, we’re going to vault you ahead of this craze and whisper some “in-the-know” tips for a successful game night. With some luck, you might even emerge a winner! (get it? like in games?):
Games: The second most important part of a well thought out game night (the first being the ample supply of “game juice” – i.e. box wine and malt liquor). It’s a good idea to choose the game based on your crowd. A room full of Jews loves the smell of Monopoly money. A heated game of Outburst is perfect for when you invite your ‘pity friends’ over – yes, you are a good person for inviting him, even with his mild bout of tourette’s. Taboo provides good cover for a drunken bunch. Once they players start to slur clues they can believingly claim that “this gameissohard”. Instead of being judged, the other players will giggle and say “oh, you’re so taboo”. To a drunk this is the penultimate of charm.
Choose wisely – if people aren’t having fun halfway through the game, you’ll have to revert to the ‘backup game’ – and no one really brought the right. . . er… “supplies” . . for a key party.
Competition: It is imperative that at least one member of your circle take game night far too seriously. A player that accidentally glanced at another’s hand is lambasted as a ‘low-life bastard’ and the married couple that is taking too long to roll the die are goaded with “jeeze, you two are taking forever. Can you just get divorced and move this game along already?” A healthy spirit of competition makes the game more exciting, except when this player loses, flips the table, and claims “I never liked you cheating assholes anyway.”
Scorecard: Make the night more interesting by playing “best of 3” or “4 out of 7” tournament matches. Make the night doubly interesting by creating some “house rules” - i.e. whoever can drink 5 shots the fastest gets 3,444,000 coolness points or the player that finishes their drink last has to spend the next round locked in the old refrigerator out back.
Class: This is the true secret of a successful game night. The fact that you’re staying in doesn’t mean that you shan’t be classy as ever. Ladies should be bedecked in shimmering cocktail dresses and the gentlemen should wear nothing less than a tuxedo. As you move from the first game of Pop Culture Trivial Pursuit to a round of Boggle, pause and dance a classic tango for good measure.
So, good luck, gentle reader! We’re sure that you can impress your friends with our gaming advice (and that tourette’s guy will be happy just to be invited). Yahtzee!