How to play “Dave’s Famous Telephone Charades”

Dave’s Famous Telephone Charades is a party game that requires a minimum of 4 “participants,” as well as a certain critical mass of reasonably creative “audience members,” probably no less than 4. It was a perennial favourite of my circle of friends when I was an undergrad at Western.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Players 1–4 go to a separate room where they can’t see or hear the audience members talking.
  2. The audience members choose a scene to be acted out silently by the players.
    • The instructions for the scene to be acted out should be simple—aim for 1 sentence.
    • The scene should lend itself easily to physical movement and interpretation.
    • The scene must be something that can be acted out silently.
    • Examples include: “washing the dishes,” “an otter in its natural habitat,” “a day in the life of a …”
  3. Player 1 comes back to the room with the audience, where he is told the scene to be acted out. He is given 10 seconds to think about what exactly he will do.
  4. Player 2 comes into the room and watches player 1 silently act out the scene given to him. The scene should be about 30 seconds long, tops. To be clear: no one tells players 2–4 what the scene is until after the game is finished.
  5. Player 3 enters and player 2 acts out the scene from memory, not knowing the instructions that were given to player 1.
  6. Player 4 enters and player 3 acts out the scene from memory.
  7. Player 4 acts out the scene as best he can from memory, narrating what it is she thinks she is acting out.
  8. Player 3 corrects player 4.
  9. Player 2 corrects player 3.
  10. Player 1 reveals the instructions she was given in the first place.

This sort of game only works with certain kinds of people in the right sort of mood, but when you have the right combination of people with the right sort of energy all together in the same place, it can be hilarious.

No conventional way to get to space from North America

Yesterday was the last launch of the space shuttle Endeavour. This is significant because after the space shuttle programme ends, there will be no conventional way to leave the planet from North America. By “conventional way to get to leave the planet,” I mean things like rockets and space shuttles. Of course I can’t rule out, a priori, the possibility of things like inter-dimensional portals, unguarded Tardises or magic wardrobes.

I believe the date for the last planned flight of Atlantis is June 28th, so if you really need to get off the planet and you don’t want to book a seat on a Soyuz capsule (and you don’t have access to a non-conventional method of leaving the planet), this is the way to go. That said, the shuttles will be sent to museums after they retire, so you might try hijacking one of them if you are really desperate.

In related news, it turns out that Gliese 581g still probably might not exist maybe, but Gliese 581d might have liquid water.

“This discovery is important because it’s the first time climate modellers have proved that the planet is potentially habitable, and all observers agree that the exoplanet exists.” (Dr Wordsworth, a member of the team from the Institut Pierre Simon Laplace in Paris)

Cabane à sucre

This weekend past, I was invited to a family event in rural Québec—an outing at a sugar shack, or a “cabane à sucre,” in French. It reminded me of when my parents decided to tap the tree in front of our house and boil it down to syrup. The house smelled of maple syrup for weeks!

Anyway, here in Québec, these guys actually built a shed out in the country so that they don’t have to deal with it in their kitchen.

Something that we didn’t do when we made maple syrup, is making de la tire, or maple taffy on the snow.

How to pick up chicks

Picking up chicks
Picking up chicks

This is how you pick up chicks:

  • Go to a farm.
  • Ask the owner if you can see their chicks.
  • Run and catch one.
  • Really, they don’t run that fast. That said, check out the video I posted of the chicks running away from me.
  • It’s so fluffy! I’m gonna die!

Wait, isn’t that what you thought I meant by “picking up chicks?”

Gingerbread Tardis

"Hello, I'm the Doctor."

In light of some difficult family circumstances, I decided to take a night and do something silly. I had a friend over, one with whom I am in the habit of watching Doctor Who. While the result wasn’t quite as good as some other gingerbread Tardises on the internet, I am very happy to present photographs from last night’s project.

Usually, when I make something creative with gingerbread, I use a lot of red food colouring. You know, for the blood.

This time, however, the carnage was only an afterthought. I didn’t mean for there to be such a high death toll. Honest! And further, I think that the massacre was relatively tasteful for me.

The only cookie cutters I own
The only cookie cutters I own

The real reason why there was so many dead people is not because of the (very adorable) gingerbread Daleks. It’s mostly because I only own cookie cutters that have pieces missing from them. (Thanks for the present, Steph!)

You’ll note that even the gingerbread man who I assume is supposed to be the Doctor (the one who is halfway inside the Tardis) is missing his hand. My interpretation of this is that this is a scene from the few seconds during which the Doctor had his hand cut off by the Sycorax before it regenerated. This makes sense, because that happened during the “Christmas Invasion Special,” and it’s a gingerbread Tardis, so it should be on a Christmas theme, after all.

Tardis and bodies

A lot can happen in a year

I arrived here in Montreal one year ago on Friday.

A lot has changed.

Sometimes it’s good to sit back and take stock of all the things that have happened, and to think about all the things that one has to be thankful for. Things are generally pretty good now: I had a great job for the summer, I have great friends living in my building, and I was just talking with Pickles today and thinking about how much I appreciate her. I even have a TA-ship and an RA-ship lined up for this school year.

I’m TA-ing the introductory ethics course in the philosophy department this year, which will be exciting.

Things are different from the way they were a year ago. They’re different from what I expected, and certainly different from what I wanted, but I’m okay with the way things are.

The Bioethics Unit party

My classmates at Vendome station after the Bioethics Unit party
My classmates at Vendome station after the Bioethics Unit party

Today was the Bioethics Unit party, held at the beautiful home of the director of the Bioethics Unit. I finally got a bunch of long-awaited details on exactly how the programme works.

We discussed supervisors, length of thesis (no more than 100 pages – darn :P) and details regarding the practicum that will be happening in the Winter term. The majority of the evening was spent getting to know my classmates and other members of the Unit.

It was both a “Welcome to the Bioethics Unit” party and a “Happy Retirement” party for one of the profs who will be stepping down as the Unit director.

Pictured to the right are two of my four classmates at Vendome station. They were headed in the opposite direction from where I was going, so I took the opportunity to photograph them from the opposite platform.