Roman à clef game

Players choose a symbolic “title” for an unknown character. They then fold and pass to the next player,  who blindly writes the “real” identity of that title.

Round 1

JA, CC, SC, MF, AK

The Queen of Dream Sweden is really Friedrich Nietzsche

The Witch of the Great Dismal Swamp is really Harpo

The Head Advisor of the Queen of Atlantis is really Louise Brooks

The Consort of Duke Ariel is really The Possum

*

The Professor of Snakes is really President Nasser

The Lover of Eyes is really Mr. Mathematical

The Queen of Nails is really Thomas Hardy

The Tiger of Shadowland is really Dr. Frankenstein

*

The Cloud Navigator is really Valeriana of Montreal

He Who is a Void is really Kropotkin

Inevitability is really Kathleen Fox

Stranger’s Weirdly Non-Strange Daughter is really Desmond Morris

*

The Saint Among Frogs is really James Bond (the ornithologist, not the agent!)

The Cut-Throat Cat is really Rosemary Eldritch

The Hair Puller is really Alice Cooper

The Queen of Silk is really Beef Boy

Round 2 

In this round, the completed lists of characters were randomly distributed to players who were then to write a story including them.

JA, CC, SC, MF, AK

*

The Devourer of Salty Chips is really Paracelsus

The Eviscerating Onion is really Aretha Franklin

The Duke of Cascade is really Werner Herzog

The Alienator of Children is really Charles Darwin

(Galino Ustuolskaya left blank)

After many decades of isolation, the Alienator of Children is freed from their walled-off prison-turned-apartment complex. Their memory is almost completely wiped, with the lone exception being an image of an Eviscerating Onion. Wandering the open streets of the cityscape that surrounds him, he’s suddenly run over by a phantom-like train with a sign that memorializes the Devourer of Salty Chips on its side. Collision with the train teleports him to an abandoned factory town. He can’ t move, left to just stare upward to a water tower. No matter where he moves his sight toward, the water tower is still in the exact centre of focus. He’s approached by the Duke of Cascade. The Alienator assumed that the Duke was just his parasitic twin that perished at birth. Seeing the Duke reminds him of the automated mantra.

-AK

*

The Duke of Happenstance is really Vincent Price

The Clade of Temptation is really the Loch Ness Monster

The Mystery of Atlanta is really Rick Schmidt

The Clipper of Knowledge is really Chu Ishikawa

The Dreamer of Tusks is really Carnacki, Occult Detective

In the night, the Dreamer of Tusks came to the city of scottish tobacco to seek out the Clade of Temptation. To prove its reality was his primary motivation. It was a city of backgrounds, used in many different films, which explained the presence of The Mystery of Atlanta. He had come to direct the Duke of Happenstance in a horror movie, coincidentally also about the Clade of Temptation. The Dreamer of Tutsks appeared on the set thinking he had found the mysterious Clade. When he walked into the swampy location, he heard the maniacal laughter of the Duke of Happenstance, and in the background the strange musical soundtrack provided by the Clipper of Knowledge. The dreamer lost the skein of reality in that moment and sunk into the mire of his own delirium. The puppet Clade and the fully-costumed Duke merged into a fury of images. The Mystery of Atlanta had the perfect shot to complete his greatest film.

-JA

*

The Knitter of Antelopes is really Kobo Abe

The Harbinger of Derangement is really Puppet Boy

The Lord of Dancing Pigs is really Megan Leach

The Ruler of the Land of Snakes and Boars is really Janice Hathaway

The Wise Elder of Falling Rocks is really The Female Pope

The Knitter of Antelopes ate a falling star created by the Wise Elder. Meanwhile, the Lord of Dancing Pigs was struck by the erotic aspect of the long lost Harbinger of Derangement. It was a tricky sort of Saturday where even the Ruler of Snakes and Bones [sic] would take to clutching her squirrels. No rest for the weary Sun here, not ever. The Wise Elder, despairing of any relief from an eternal itch, rolled a fruit covered ball down a hill, never to be seen or heard from again.

-SC

*

The Bartender of Bottled Dreams is really Tituba

The Prophet of Time is really Caligula

Shoemaker X is really Aunt Petunia

The Shy Ghost is really Inspector Clouseau

The Shy Goat is really The Incredible Hulk

The Bartender of Bottled Dreams quickly sold out in the land of insomniacs and bees. “Where now,” the bartender asked, “should I go to sell my liquids of firefly lisps and sparrow feet?” And the Puppet of Lost Time answered from below her skirts that that she should seek the shop of Shoemaker X who had never slept nor desired to see the aurora borealis nor the sea. So the bartender left to find the shop of Shoemaker X, but she was waylaid on a stone bridge by a Shy Ghost, lost in a dream who only wanted to sleep. So the bartender sold the Ghost a draught made of the urine of the Shy Goat chewing leaves nearby and she lifted the Ghost on the back of the goat and they slept their way to the moon to bleat. 

-CC

*

The Butchershop-Keeper of Osaka, Japan is really Casimir Cline

The unintelligible Slab of Facial Skin is really Lewis Carroll

The Industrialized Iron Tumor of Downtown Decatur is really Alfred Kinsey

The Nostalgic Void of Sentient States is really Steven Cline

The Skeletal Flesh Grinder of Spatial Anomalies is really Jan Svankmajer

It was a cheerful morning in the cemetery as the butchershop keeper of Osaka, Japan, arrived with her picnic basket and her cooler full of almost inedible fruits. Oddly, her usual spot was occupied by an unintelligible slab of facial skin. The skin slab was trying to lure children to the spot with promises of terrifying stories, which he certainly intended to keep. So the butchershop keeper chose to climb a big cemetery sycamore instead but once up in the tree she found that to be occupied as well. It was the nostalgic void of sentient states, spying on the unintelligible skin slab to record its remarkable and highly sublimated courtship behaviour. At this time, her patience was all spent and she refused to change spots again, so she tried again to scare the iron tumor away by detailed dream-telling. He was not that easily scared. Simultaneously, the only prey that the skin slab managed to lure to its sunny spot was the nostalgic void of sentient states. They got along well together, singing absurd songs throughout the day and through dusk well into the night, not knowing anything about how they were not being spied upon by the butchershop keeper and the iron tumor stuck in compulsive dreamtelling in the nearby foliage. There was a skinny old hobo sneaking around who was actually the skeletal fleshgrinder of spatial anomalies, who was the only one who had seen the whole development, and by the powers invested in him in his line of duty, he claimed that he was the author of the scene. We have seen a large number of megalomaniacs like that. It’s best to just play along. They wouldn’t hurt a kitten. Or they might possibly hurt a kitten. But at this time, the kittens were slaughtering little songbird nestlings in the same tree. Our reticent heroes the butchershop keeper and the iron tumor were now happily falling asleep.

-MF

Sept 15th at the Polymorph Bodyshop…

Players: Johnny Williams, Mary Foshee, Macy Goodwin, Jason Abdelhadi, Casi Cline, & Steven Cline

If the bear is wearing chain mail today…then maybe I could see the light on the other side.
If the north wind blows…then the doorknob will become volcanic
If love is real…then where will the children play?
If the cream spoils…then the tulip will become covered in red ants.
If the plant blooms…then how will they know how tall it could get?
If the blue cat becomes an opera singer…then the bamboo knocks to the rhythm of conjunctivitis.
If the possum becomes a blues singer…then reset the knob.
If the dog neglects to bite…then looking south, the phone rings.
If the earlobes were dangling…then the chicken wing will fly off.
If you touch your nose to your knee…then the motor explodes.
If summer is over…then the codswallop dreams big.
If only I could reach the top shelf…then everyone must leap with joy.
If the corpse flower blooms…then the green caterpillar will grow spots.
If the sinkhole swallows the drowned…then the eyeball will become an astronaut.
If birds lose their timbre…then fingernails on the chalkboard will sound.
If larvae dance to the tune of dawn…then a plucking of whiskers should occur.
If I got stuck in the space there…then the cat screams in joy.
If the torrents lisp in sweetness…then and only then would I do it.
If the missing octopus spits gold…then the sinuses would clear.

Earwigs to Eternity Game

A Dicaelus ground beetle larva which looks like a rove beetle larve mimicking an earwig (and in the company of a scorpion)

Directions: Draw an image, and underneath it write what that image is. Pass this object to the next person and they will contradict you, writing what the object really is. Add small details if you like, to support your interpretation further, and pass on the paper on until each player has had their say.

Players: Jason Abdelhadi, Steven Cline, Casi Cline, Mattias Forshage, Aaron Dylan Kearns

ROUND 1

1. This is a cup of coffee.
2. No, this is a funny hat that looks like a cup of coffee.
3. Actually it is a miniature flying saucer carrying a sample of earth sewage posing as a hat to conserve fuel.
4. But all this is wrong, because it is really the planet earth, sliced in half and put on display along with an egg at some alien art museum. It is also beginning to smell.
  1. This is a tool.
  2. No, this is two snakes in a tube.
  3. Actually it is a lobster that has been working out, and doubles in various rural chores like pulling the plow.
  4. Wrong, it is a two headed snake wearing a lobster hat who is an indentured servant in the house of Ol Sal.
  1. This is an old defunct telephone.
  2. No, it is a camouflaged spider.
  3. Actually it is a lobster crushed by a telephone.
  4. I disagree, it is a drain pipe emptying into a sewer grate.
  1. This is a seahorse.
  2. Nope, this is the anus of an electrified flatworm.
  3. Actually, this is a horse head wearing a mask.
  4. Close, but not quite…This is the face of an electrified flatworm wearing a horse head mask of a flatworm anus. He is a bit shy.

ROUND 2

  1. These are two pandas.
  2. No, it is a short totem pole made by a child totem pole maker apprentice who was colourblind and thus denied all colours.
  3. Actually, it is a child totem pole maker apprentice who is posing as a colorless totem pole in order to better understand the colors inside the center of the totem pole.
  4. Incorrect, it is a scruffy, fuzzy dog eating the ticks off his pal Bobby’s head in a display of canine friendship.
  5. But really, it is two members of FUZZ posing for a song about scruffy & the dog.
  1. This is an eroticized seal.
  2. No, it is an exchange of information among spies, one of whom is deeply undercover.
  3. Actually it is a denial of language disguised as communication in order to discourage the sealing of knowledge.
  4. In my opinion, it is an angry tumor who has grown a face, and another tumor who is in love.
  5. But really, this is a terrible disease caused by the misinterpretation of secret information.
  1. This is a screaming teenager.
  2. No, it is a cyclops with a fleshy protrusion and a black eye.
  3. Actually, it is a camouflaged periscope from a hostile submarine, designed as a screaming cyclops teenager.
  4. I disagree, it is a carefully disguised barnacle which lies atop a submarine and replaces the original periscope. The sailors look through its digestive tract.
  5. But really, it is a squealing pig.
  1. This is an image of tooth problems.
  2. No, it is a partly eaten pomegranate, maybe not entirely fresh from the beginning?
  3. Actually, these are kernels of corn which have infiltrated the pomegranate in order to give it a bad name.
  4. I disagree, I believe this is some kind of orifice that is covered in white tumor growths.
  5. No, this is really a kind of caterpillar, covered in white tumor growths.

The Pleasers Game

Directions: As a group, choose a building which you are unable to enter or see into, but which feels somehow special to you. Describe what you think is inside it, then fold the paper, hiding your response, and pass along to the next person for them to describe.

Players: Jason Abdelhadi, Steven Cline, Casi Cline

Inside Pleasers there is a massive Golden Bear, hands outstretched, nails dripping teal salamanders. A pile of manikin become slug and slime, they circle the Golden Bear. A galaxy-faced bartender howls to no one in particular, shaking a drink. A hole in the decaying floor opens to a laughing river of pink sewage and orangutan climax. The ceiling is bleeding out stars.

Inside Pleasers there is a dripping stalactite, soft and glistening with honey and insects. However, the vultures are sated with redolent dreamtime and they rinse their eyes with vinegar and dust their leaves with cemetery seeds. But they aren’t the only ones bricked into Pleasers by the tongue. No, there are many squirming flatworms and humanoid fishes with clinging torments to drink. And drink they do and deeply from the stalactite teets of Pleasure embodied by weeds and edible creepers that sting.

Inside Pleasers the wall is licking the front paws of a grey beast. It is a washing machine filled with amniotic fluid, a fishbowl of inarticulate masturbation that flickers on and off. In the corner, a silhouette of a broken statue makes a lewd gesture at a nearby graveyard. A person made of kudzu is making out with a transparent larva and the music is weirdly harmonic. There is a fountain of red in Pleasers and if you drink from it your skin becomes a dialectical punch line of itself, a feeling in a bathtub before you drop the toaster in, a candle of orgasm in Antarctica.

Exquisite car games

Each person in the car was in charge of an adjective, a noun, or a verb. Once we all had our word decided, we spoke them out loud in the correct sequence. Players: JA, SC, CC

slimy catapult jumps
drooling slug screams
ecstatic log hallucinates
meticulous waterfall withers
congealing trumpet rotates
evaporating ivy despairs
creeping bottle pontificates
dying radio floats
eroticized canyon glistens
ghostly squirrel broadcasts
cataleptic tormentor seduces
fading throat plummets *here it started to rain*
moistening piglet tickles
threatening raven plummets
articulate cowboy breaks
masked panda drowns
masterful tombstone shudders
vampiric gecko dissolves
alchemical apple pie elopes
obscene landfill erupts
eerie tarpit burns
ridiculous carousel freezes

“congealing trumpet rotates” – an improvised song played by JA and CC, while SC was suffering in a mcdonalds bathroom…