Saturday, January 22, 2011

is that elvis or a fetus? you decide

board games are fun.  when i say board games i am referring to any game really that involves skill, knowledge, or a combination of both.  games that depend too much on the non-skill/non-knowledge based trait of luck aren't that fun.  strategy games are fun, but they generally take too long.  card games are okay, but they involve too much chance.  and last, but not least, as i'm not a mouth-breather, role playing games have never interested me that much (which is surprising considering my affinity for star wars).  accordingly, board games are my recreational non-athletic game of choice.

mostly i like board games because i'm somewhat of a seasoned professional in this arena.  i'm pretty good with trivia and all of its iterations, as well as, guessing words and giving clues for other to guess words.  i also excel at spelling frontwards, but especially backwards.  i'm so-so at charades, but my high-level of skill in the other areas makes up for it.  i would have to say, however, that my specialty is drawing.

a co-worker recently told me about a game i'd never heard of: impossible pictionary.  naturally, i was intrigued and felt somewhat challenged as nothing pictionary had ever thrown at me proved to be impossible (just ask milton bradley as they tried for years to stump me until i unofficially retired).  impossible pictionary, though...

alright, i'll bite.  what is this impossible pictionary of which you speak?

basically, it's pictionary, but you split up into boys vs. girls (always makes for a good date night to have a battle of the sexes when it comes to board games and run the risk of driving your marriage/relationship to within inches of formal dissolution) and then each team tries to come up with impossible words for the other team to draw.  the only rules are no legal or medical terms... at least in her family since everyone is a doctor or lawyer.

i requested some examples of words they have used to see if i felt it would even be worth my time to throw my hat in the ring.

so, "falafel" she says.

difficult?  maybe.

impossible?  hardly.

i started a rough sketch of how i would approach the task of drawing a falafel and was well on my way to certain masterpiece that even a blind person could have guessed before i asked for another example.  my co-worker then explained that part of the strategy is to provide a word to the other team that might be somewhat embarrassing for them to draw.

take, for instance, the word "menopause".  now even i will concede that this word could be somewhat difficult, especially if one is attempting to draw it in the presence of mixed company.  another co-worker of mine, however, didn't seem to think it would be that tough and suggested that you just draw a uterus with a ghostbuster-esque circle and line through it.

brilliant.  the genius of the masculine mind.

then again, as nice as concept as it was; one little problem: how easy is it to draw a uterus?

well, in my experience, a lot easier than one might think.

i shall explain...

to date, my record in pictionary is like a bazillion and one.  but my near spotless record hasn't always been that way.  there was a time that it was actually completely spotless and as unblemished and pure as the snow falling on the streets of salt lake city on that cursed winter night when my unbeaten record fell.

this night took place during the early days of the courtship between the blogmaster and mrs. blogmaster-to-be.  it was a seminal event in our relationship that almost led to the ruination of the budding romance between us.

as it were, mrs. blogmaster and i were engaged (not to be married... at least not yet) in a heated battle of pictionary with a couple other couples.  it was a close match with each turn counting that much more than the last one.  we may have been teetering, we have been trying to secure a lead... i don't remember;  but, what i do remember was that it was finally my turn and just as sure as casey at the plate i was ready to spark our comeback or seal the deal depending on whether we were behind or about to run away with it (memory doesn't serve).

the following is the play-by-play:

the blogmaster has selected his card and it looks like the word is "elvis".  yes, we can confirm that the word is in fact "elvis".

shouldn't be a problem for the blogmaster seeing as how he is from las vegas and has seen his fair share of elvis impersonators.  what's more, if we consider his considerable skill in sketching caricatures, this one should be in the bag for his team.

here he goes.  the timer has been turned, the sands are flowing...

looks like he is starting out slow.  taking his time focusing on the details to ensure that the drawing is clear and unmistakable.  no need to rush.

good call.  it looks like he is going with elvis in his later years: a little more portly, big hair and big sideburns... these feature being more exaggerated and identifiable with elvis should make the drawing more identifiable and easy to guess.  he is a wizard.

the hair and sideburns are in place.  looks like he's moving to the face with some thick rimmed glasses.  unreal... glasses?  who would have thunk?

no guesses yet, i think his team is waiting for the whole picture to come together just for the drama of it all.

step-by-step recreation of the drawing from an upside down view as mrs. blogmaster-to-be would have viewed it.
wait... it looks like mrs. blogmaster-to-be is mustering up a guess...

here it comes:

mrs. blogmaster-to-be: "fetus!"


crickets chirping.

did she say fetus?  did she really say that out loud?  awkward.  the blogmaster is stunned.  it's as if time has stopped.  actually, it has... the last grain of sand just slipped through the birth canal portion of the hour glass.

in all fairness to mrs. blogmaster-to-be, the hair does somewhat resemble a gelatinous fetus, but i'm afraid i've never seen a fetus wear a pair of thick-rimmed glass, hold a microphone, or wear a one piece chest hair a-blazing jump suit.  but, we'll give her the benefit of the doubt since she's looking at the picture upside down.

we can't believe our eyes.  this can't be good.  in fact, it looks like the blogmaster is expressing his frustration towards mrs. blogmaster-to-be and i think mrs. blogmaster-to-be just told him where he can stick it.  ouch.  he better keep his pie hole shut and take the loss like a man.  double awkward.  their friends are staring at them.  we're all feeling a little uncomfortable now.

end scene.

okay, so fetus and uterus are two different things, but they both end in "us" and i had to have some kind of transition from one story to the other.

bottom line is that the blogmaster still needs to learn to be a gracious loser.  luckily, he doesn't have to be gracious too often.  however, the other night we played a game (girls against boys, of course) and the girls won.  i graciously accepted defeat and admitted out loud without any hint of rancor or resentment that the ladies had won.

mrs. blogmaster was so shocked that i had conceded defeat so willingly that she grabbed a video camera in order to film me with my tail between my legs.  i gladly admitted on camera that i was actually happy and somewhat relieved to see the ladies win as it was quite possibly the first time ever in the history of cooper family get togethers that the women had defeated the men.

in fact, i was so pleased at the outcome i encouraged mrs. blogmaster's filming of the momentous occasion for posterity's sake as i had once feared our kids would never see this day... at least now it was documented and even our youngest will be able to look back on a glorious moment he is unlikely to remember or ever experience again.  mrs. blogmaster was so geeked out over the win she even put the scoresheet on the fridge for a few weeks to make sure i could remember my defeat at the hand of the ladies.

it was a great day for female board-game players everywhere.

so, in closing, how's that for gracious defeat?  maybe next time i'll talk about the ultimate frisbee football game that pretty much ruined Christmas a few years ago.  stay tuned.


Kelly said...

Jeremy Cooper you are HILARIOUS. I just read your post about climbing the mountain and the pictionary debacle. I am still chuckling to myself as I type whereas for the last 5 minutes I have been laughing out loud! Erik came to the computer to see the commotion my loud boisterous laugher was causing and read over my shoulder and began laughing too. The way you describe things is uncanny at best! I love reading your blog because I always know I will laugh and on a week like this week has been with kids deathly ill, I needed a good laugh! You and Aimee are so wonderful,we just love you guys!!

PS can you redraw Elvis the way you had that night for me so I can see if indeed it looked like an upside down fetus?! :)

the cooperfive said...


it's always nice to know at least you and erik will appreciate my trivial ramblings. at your suggestion, i have included a sketch of the "elvis/fetus" drawing. take a look and tell me what you think.

Serena said...

Who exactly is this coworker you speak of? She sounds both beautiful and witty.

Kelly said...

Jeremy I remember that you sometimes respond to my comments on your own blog...I wait for the day you hop on over to my blog to make a comment, but that can be a conversation for another day. :) REgardless, I decided to check if you had responded and was PLESANTLY surprised to see you had indeed included the drawing. It made me laugh even harder. I could see Aim's reasoning for numbers 1 and 2, but by 3 and 4 it begins to emerge from a fetus as clothes are drawn :). However, upsidedown I don't know if in the rush and adrenalin flow of the game I would have shouted Elvis either! :) Although my hats off to you for a wonderful drawing. Knowing it is indeed Elvis makes it even more impressive!

Jason C. Walker, Esq. said...

Would it be too much to ask for at least bi-annual blog posts? Seriously, we zombies need you.

iinitiate the blog

iinitiate the blog