People say you shouldn’t let all your crazy out at once right… well I’m just going to go ahead and slap it all up on this table. I Amanda Jasmine Williamson have an unhealthy love of induced awkwardness.
I blame all the acting classes I did when I was young. The first basic rule of improv is say yes. You just have to roll with a scene. If a fellow actor yells “you just pooed your pants!” you reply in agreement. “I should’ve know never to trust the silent ones! When will I learn!!?”. Around my teenage years I up-ed the volume of improv. I tested the “yes rule” on my fellow actors, ok, if we’re going to be technical – by actors I mean the “public”, and ended up with some games that I still dabble in today when I’m in need for some entertainment.
1. Stranger waving:
Wave at strangers on the street in nice quiet suburbs in such a convincing way that they wave back, then watch their face as they start to question that they actually know you. Beautiful awkwardness. Works best when waving from a car in slow zones.
2. Supermarket conversations:
If you have a familiar face like I do, this game will be a snap. Walk up to any Tom, Dick or Harry in the supermarket and carry out a conversation with them as if they are old friends. Don’t let the conversation go to the stage where they ask, “sorry how do I know you”. Just get in there ask some questions about how their family are doing (or whatever topic you choose), and go beyond the point where they feel comfortable asking questions about the purpose of your conversation, and then get out. Hilarious if you can pull it off, and well, even if you can’t.
3. Facebook familiarity:
I know so much random stuff about my Facebook friends, that when I bump into someone I haven’t seen in years, instead of asking them general questions, as is socially acceptable, I just get in there and fire all the trivia I know about them from my Facebook feed. “I noticed your Grandmother had her 80th birthday last week, what a lovely cake that was. I’ve actually been meaning to ask you where you got that gold dress from – it looked fantastic on you”. It’s brilliantly awkward, I get tingles. The cool thing about this game, is that you can see the person realize, “man I’ve got to change my Facebook privacy settings”, but for the time being most people just roll with it, and it’s a pretty cool conversation.
4. Subway circumference:
This is a new game I’m thinking about inventing. At peak times in the subway here in Santiago (Chile) it sometimes feels a little like twister with strangers. In this game you have to completely embrace a person, with your two arms fully stretched around their body as if to hug them, and hold it as long as you can without them noticing. This game could go big ;).
Now, I didn’t invent this incredibly awesome awkward game, and I’m not sure my skills are at the Olympic level of these guys – but it’s certainly fantastic fun to try!
Come-on surely you’ve got some awkward tricks up your sleeve?
- Are you a staring longer than you should kind of person.
- Maybe a say “love you” at the end of phone calls guy.
- Let me guess, you shake with the left hand instead of right when greeting people or hand bump when someone is trying to give you a high-five.
- If you’ve been pregnant, did you look shocked when people asked when you were due?