alicke

Junior Bizarre

Destructo

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I want to introduce you to my favorite drawing game–Destructo! My friend Stephen introduced me to this little piece of genius a decade or so ago, and it remains one of the best ways I know to kill time or entertain yourself with barely any materials (it blows tic tac toe out of the water for sure).

All you need is something to draw with and something to draw on, and one or more people to play with you. The basic premise of the game is that each person has to draw something that destroys whatever came before it. It’s similar to the idea behind The Superest, but not limited to personification. The crazier the concept, the better—you can get as abstract as you want, and the more you push beyond the most obvious answer, the more fun the game is to play. You also don’t have to work chronologically—for example, it’s way cooler to have a kitchen table destroyed by the fact that the manufacturer accidentally replaced all the screws with marzipan screws given to him for his birthday by his pastry chef girlfriend than it is to just burn it or chop it up. It also only applies to whatever came immediately before—your goal now is to “destroy” the manufacturer, the screws, or the girlfriend; the table is no longer in play. Pretty much any destruction should be accepted unless it’s really egregious—there’s a willing suspension of disbelief that is inherent here. Nitpicking derails the game and takes away the fun.

Here’s an example played by my friend Lauren and me while waiting for the eternally wonderful Lavender Diamond to take the stage at the Echo last week. She drew in black and I drew in purple (and in italics below). See if you can follow along (click to enlarge):

We start with a houseplant, which was destroyed by a clueless houseguest, who was destroyed by a shortsheeted guest bed, which was destroyed by bedbugs, which were destroyed by having the bed’s inhabitant die and thus deprive them of food, which was actually all a dream, but coffee keeps one from sleeping much less dreaming, however there was a severe drought and all the coffee plants died, but in fact solar-powered sprinklers were installed, unfortunately they were bought out by the Bechtel Corporation, which was shut down by a group of protesters, who were felled by pepper spray, but the spray can had a defect due to a distracted factory worker, who was fired, but then his wife won the lottery, but the ticket was ripped and burnt in a fire, however the fire was in fact a DVD fireplace, but the DVD was recalled by Wal-Mart, however they had intended to recall a DVD called Fireman Joe which was supposed to be a children’s film but had accidentally been replaced by porn, so all the horrified parents sued Wal-Mart, but there was a power outage so nobody’s DVD players worked, but nobody cared about the power outage since it gave them the opportunity to have romantic candlelit dinners with their loved ones…and so on. Now you try!

(Also please witness an important paradigm shift in my visual shorthand: after drawing the TV in the scene where the wife wins the lottery, I realized that my go-to “TV symbol” is incredibly outdated. Tried to update to a flatscreen in the accidental-porn scene–we’ll see if it sticks.)

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