Erica Marx

Jumpin’ Jehosephat

by for .  

in pairs people enthusiastically create new idioms



bold personal expression


From Ted's blog

This playful but difficult game encourages dramatic commitment and generates good laughs by calling out the unexpected. Have two participants up at the front of the room sitting on chairs as if they were sitting on the porch of an old Country Store. One starts by slapping his or her knee and declaring “Well Jumpin’ Jehosephat and call me Christmas!” and then comes up with something surprising that character might have just learned: “Ole Mrs. Haverford’s getting ready to have another baby!”

The second character responds by slapping his or her own knee and coming up with another two-part exclamation of surprise: “Well, kiss my gizzard and grab me an onion!” The amazement then shoots back and forth , continuing the two-part expressions of shock without hesitation by diving into even more absurd declarations: “Well, take out the trash and kick what’s on the curb!” “Well, I’ve got Fridays and nobody’s watching!” Well, spread me some peanut butter and get me back to Georgia!” The game can go back and forth for a certain amount of time or could become a competition of sorts: first one to flinch leaves the porch and a new player comes on.

Insider tips:

Encourage folks to start with the word “Well.” That way, they get a little momentum going into the declaration.

The declarations don’t have to be completely non-sensical, just spontaneous and enthusiastic: “Well, tip the table over and call the dog to clean it!” still works even though it could be, um, logical.

Alliteration can make for good laughs, as in “Well, sing along with Elvis and bring me back a biscuit!” Requiring such detail can make the game more challenging for those who master it quickly.

As in sound ball, see if players can leave a pre-planned “good” idea and just take the next one that arrives when their turn comes along.


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