How To Have A Zoom Game Night

Now that the majority of the country is practicing social distancing, the way we entertain ourselves has drastically changed. Musicians are streaming concerts on YouTube, comedians are going live on Instagram, and people all over the world are using Zoom well after their work calls are over in order to spend time with loved ones. But if your video chat hangs are starting to feel a bit repetitive (read: You’re drinking way more wine than usual), a game night on Zoom may provide a much-needed reprieve.

“Using video conferencing technology to have fun, to engage with other people, and to connect socially, reminds us that we are not alone and that we have people there to support us,” Dr. Josh Klapow, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist and associate professor of public health at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, tells phicklephilly.

Hopping on video chat can be a great way to feel less isolated. Folks everywhere are propping up their phones while they cook together, watch movies, or simply have conversations. But the fun of a game night, in particular, can make these quiet evenings seem a little less strange and a lot more nostalgic. Battling it out with friends might even ease coronavirus-related anxiety, at least for a little while, as you focus your mind elsewhere.

Here, a few ideas for ways to have a Zoom game night, so you can stay connected from afar.

1. Trivia Night

You may not be crammed into your favorite bar booth with five of your closest friends, but you can still recreate trivia night by playing together on Zoom. Start by assigning a host (like yourself) and coming up with questions. Aim for five or so categories, with about eight questions each.

From there, figure out how you’ll communicate. Each team will need a private space to whisper answers, like a breakout room, but you can all meet back in the main “bar” area on Zoom. Give everyone 30 seconds to deliberate, and then have them submit answers via DM.

Of course, as with any trivia night, you’ll want and need rules. Remind players to stay off Google, to put their phones down, and to only get answers from teammates — not their roommate, who is a fount of 90s music knowledge. And just like that, you’ll have recreated trivia night from the safety of your homes.

2. Punderdome

A rousing game of Punderdome can easily be played via Zoom. To begin, gather at least three people, ensure that someone (again, probably you) has the deck of cards, and spend an evening making awful jokes.

To play, the “prompter” draws two cards from the deck and then reads them out to the rest of the group. Everyone has 90 seconds to create the worst pun they can come up with that combines the two prompts.

The prompter then chooses the pun they like best. The first person who gets 10 pairs of cards wins!

3. What Do You Meme

The “adult party game for meme lovers” is another one you can play from afar. If you’d like to show your cards, simply angle your camera so everyone can see what’s on the table. Get creative with this, and it’ll feel much more interactive.

What Do You Meme is all about matching up photo cards with caption cards to create your own meme. Similar to Cards Against Humanity (we’ve all played that, right?), the winning puns will come down to personal preference and can lead to heated debates over what’s funny and what isn’t.

Since you can only play with up to six people, it’s a great game to try on video chat without feeling too overwhelmed. Drinks, snacks, and other social distancing comfort optional.

4. Truth Or Dare

This classic game is a fun one to try from the privacy of your own home and can be played with as many people as you like. Ask your friends “truth” questions to learn more about each other, or go for a “dare” if your goal is to crack each other up. The possibilities are endless, as long as they all involve staying inside.

5. Charades

In case you need a reminder, charades is that game where you act out a word or phrase without speaking, and your teammates have to guess what it is. To do it over Zoom, simply move your camera when it’s your turn, so everyone can see what you’re doing.

You’ll need two teams, a list of suggestions, and a timer. Each person will get a chance to act out their word, while their team tries to figure it out. You might get something like “gardening,” at which point you’ll get down on your hands and knees, dig in the dirt, plant flowers, etc. Use your imagination.

You can’t, of course, mouth the answer, make noise, or use items in your room as clues. That’s some hardcore charades cheating, right there. But you can think back to your high school theater arts class, and put your old miming skills to work.

6. Dungeons & Dragons

The cool thing about D&D is it’s an imagination-based game, making it something you can easily play on Zoom until you can meet up with your friends in real life.

The majority of the work will fall on the game master (probably you) since it’ll be important to consider ways to keep everyone involved. But it can be done! Just pretend you’re all sitting around the same table, as per usual, and continue your story.

If a player needs dice to roll, they can do so online with a quick Google search. There are also fancy virtual tabletops you can try out. But you may want to keep things simple, especially if you aren’t too experienced with the game or have never tried it before, and stick to fun, light-hearted role-playing.

7. Mind Meld

Have all your friends sign on to Zoom, then take turns going in a circle while trying to “meld minds,” aka say the exact same word at the exact same time.

Two players will start by counting down from three and then saying any word that comes to mind. One player then turns to the person “next to them,” and they count down from three, then say a word that the two previous words made them think of. And so on.

It’s basically a game of word association, and if you play it right — where no one’s trying to be funny or saying random things just for a laugh — you will eventually hone in on the same word, and it’ll feel like magic.

8. Never Have I Ever

This is a classic drinking game that can be played with or without alcohol over video chat.

Have everyone hold up their hand as players take turns sharing something they’ve never done before. If someone in the circle has done it, they put a finger down (or take a drink). Go for spicy questions to keep things interesting, and to make it less likely that everyone’s done it.

Ideas: Never have I ever fainted. Never have I ever bungee jumped. Never have I ever had a paranormal experience. Never have I ever had a one-night stand.

The person with the most fingers remaining up at the end wins!

9. Quiplash

The rules of Quiplash are super easy, as there are no rules or correct answers. All you do is answer prompts within the game, then everyone votes on the wittiest answers.

According to the game’s creators, you can play with up to eight of your friends, as well as up to 10,000 participants in the in app “Audience.” Playing on a stream? Your viewers can join in and participate in the game, too.

10. 21 Questions

Woman using a laptop in the night sitting on a couch in the living room at home
Shutterstock

Get to know your friends even better by playing a game of 21 Questions. To get things started, have everyone come up with a list of 21 Qs, then roll a die, and have the person with the lower number answer first.

The person who is asking should start with easy questions, like, “What did you have for breakfast this morning?” Then move onto ones that are more risqué, if your friends are OK with that.

You can ask “what if?” questions, pose interesting scenarios, ask about dreams and fears — or whatever else sounds fun.

11. Two Truths & A Lie

Two Trusts & A Lie is another party game that focuses on telling, well, two truths and a lie. Each player will have a chance to share two facts about themselves plus something that’s entirely made up, and the goal is to correctly guess which one is the lie.

To throw everyone off, choose two truths about yourself that people might not know, or two things that seem a bit outlandish or out of character for you. Mix those in at random with a lie, which can be equally outlandish, and chances are everyone will have a hard time figuring it out!

12. Read My Lips

To play Read My Lips, have the person who is “it” turn off their microphone. They will then say a series of words in a given amount of time while everyone else reads their lips and writes down what they think they’re saying. The person with the most correct guesses is the obvious winner.

13. Pass It Along

This game is all about creating a story together, one sentence at a time. Start the story, then pass it off to another friend who will add the next sentence, then someone else will add the third sentence, and keep going until it feels like the tale has reached a natural conclusion.

You can be as serious or as silly as you want, but think about the plot, remember to add in characters and details, so the story is interesting. Try to recall what was said before you and work together to create a narrative with rising action.

For an added element, record the story and listen back afterward to hear back how utterly ridiculous it was.

14. Scavenger Hunt

If you’re hosting this event, create a list of things people may (or may not) have around their apartment. Add everyday items to the list, like a coffee mug or a box of pasta, as well as a few unique items, like an antique watch or a Slinky. Set a timer, share the list, and see who can come rushing back to Zoom with the most items on the list.

15. Drawing Challenge

Pick a category, form teams of two, and have one person from each team do a Google image search of abstract shapes or pieces of art that fall within the category.

Go into Zoom breakout rooms so you won’t be talking over each other, and then be as specific as possible as you describe the image to your partner, so they have a better shot at drawing it on a piece of paper, with paint — whatever medium you’ll all be using.

Give everyone five minutes to draw, then come back into the main chat and vote on the winner.

16. Last Letter

If you’d like to keep your brain sharp during this time of social distancing, play Last Letter with your friends. All you need to do is choose a category — ’90s movies, flowers, states, colors, etc. — and say a word within that category. The next person will say a word that starts with the last letter of your word, and on and on you’ll go until someone comes up blank. That person will then sit out the next round. Keep playing until only one player is left standing.

17. Would You Rather?

Ask each other “would you rather” type questions, such as “Would you rather have really long arms or really long legs?” or “Would you rather have super strength or super speed?” Be creative and have fun!

If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and coughing, call NHS 111 in the UK or visit the CDC website in the U.S. for up-to-date information and resources. 

 

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Sexual Truth or Dare – The Adult Game

Truth or Dare was once a children’s game full of innocence, but today it’s something that’s completely different and used usually to lose all innocence. So what’s the real story behind a grown up game of sexual truth or dare?

Time was when the game Truth or Dare meant finding out who had crushes on whom, or making that annoying neighbor act like a monkey. Today, the game is used regularly for far more serious business, that of seduction and excitement, a game of adult truth or dare.

If you are ever invited to a sleepover at a friend’s place, and after a couple of drinks the game the Truth or Dare is suggested, in all probability it’s been planned.

Not that you mind, do you? But things can go wrong if you’re not forewarned about the full impact of the game as it is played today.

The game is played differently when played with new friends and when played with a close intimate group. But be cautioned if it’s happening after drinks and if there’s a group of guys and girls, because there’s bound to be seductive overtones.

Playing sexual truth or dare

You need to know who’s around you before you either suggest or agree to be a part of the game. If you have to suggest it, make sure you’ve spoken to everybody in the room at least once and do some serious evaluation about the comfort levels of every person before saying “Let’s play Truth or Dare”.

If somebody else suggests it, check to see if you feel the excitement running through you. This is unfamiliar territory. The excitement is caused out of anxiety over the unknown. Are you in a relationship with someone?

Ask yourself, if your partner will be okay if you played this with an outside group. If your partner is in the same room, make eye contact to see if things will be okay. If the signals are green, the rest is easy. Think of the worst you may have to do and remind yourself how far you’ll go, and where you’ll draw the line.

Avoiding embarrassment in the adult game

The worst that can happen is agreeing to play the game and then not going by it. It can kill the evening and it’ll be time for everyone to go home. It’s best to opt out of it by saying that you may need to leave early, so you don’t want to participate.

Tell your friends that you have to take a call and it’ll take a while, later hang by the bar and keep opting out. If you want to, that is. Remember, Truth or Dare ultimately turns out more about the dare than the truth. Few remember the ‘truths’ you may have uttered, unless you’ve touched a chord. But everyone will remember the girl who took her top off.

Getting Lucky

Truth or dare in many circles today is more about making out with someone. And in more cases than one, it’s about making out with someone without too much of a preamble like courting. In most cases the game starts slowly with gentle questions like “bow to the wittiest, kneel to the prettiest and kiss the one you love the best”.

But it doesn’t stay there. Soon you’re showing your underwear, your bra, and doing lap dances. If you really have the intention of ending the party in bed, you need to do a lot more than just plan your questions and dares. You need to plan it well.

 

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3 Texting Signals That Your Partner’s Playing Games, So Hang Up

So much of getting to know someone new can feel like playing games. Whether it’s how long you wait to text each other back or how many exclamation points you add, texting someone new can feel like one big mystery. Once you define the relationship with your partner, it can be relieving to feel like that weird tension is behind you, but that might not always be the case. If you find that they’re still being unnecessarily weird over text, texting signals your partner’s playing games can be glaringly obvious, and have the potential to make anyone feel insecure about their connection.

Turns out, there’s a reason your partner may still be texting you as if you were still dating, and it has more to do with them than it does with you. “If your partner is playing games, it may be a sign of their personal insecurities,” Claudia Cox, relationship coach and founder of Text Weapon, tells Elite Daily. “It’s not about you. It’s not because you aren’t exciting, attractive, or amazing enough. It’s about them and their insecurities.”

According to Cox, if your partner has trust issues or is a self-professed commitment-phobe, playing games may be their way of not getting too connected to you or dealing with their own relationship fears. Although you may love your boo, you never need to put up with shadiness or miscommunication, IRL or on the phone. And if you feel your partner is being dishonest, you might want to communicate your fears to them directly before jumping to any conclusions.

If you’re thinking your partner might be playing games, Cox breaks down the three texting signs to look out for.

Shutterstock

1. It Feels Like They’re Intentionally Not Replying

If you’re constantly waiting to hear back from your partner, or they haven’t replied to you but you know they’re on their phone, it may be time for a check-in. “Not texting or calling you back in a reasonable amount of time, even when they are obviously not busy, is something to look out for,” Cox says. You and your boo may have your own way of talking to each other, but if you’re starting to feel ignored or uncomfortable, it’s always OK to say so.

You and your partner certainly don’t need to be texting every second of every day, but if you’ve been trying to reach them for a week and when you finally hear back, they pretend they haven’t been leaving you on read, it may be time to chat. Cox shares that them dodging you for a while and then hitting you with a “What’s up?” text like nothing happened can also be a sign they’re playing games. “If you find someone being unnecessarily unresponsive, don’t make excuses for their lack of good communication or politeness,” Cox says. “Don’t bother chasing them or over-analyzing their behavior.”

2. They’re Making You Question Yourself

Texting is tricky because you have no idea how someone is saying whatever it is they’re texting you. Although it’s easy to misinterpret a message, if your partner always makes you feel bad about your texts or they completely twist your words around, it may be time to talk IRL.

“Look out for people who create drama by purposefully misinterpreting your texts,” Cox says. “For example, if you send them a sweet, ‘Good morning!’ text message after not hearing from them for a few days and they respond with something passive-aggressive such as, ‘Sorry, I don’t have time to text you every five minutes, I’ve been really busy.'” There’s nothing more frustrating than having your words be misinterpreted. Although needing to clarify something can just mean your partner is confused about your tone, your partner intentionally making you question your words on a regular basis can be a sign you’re not on the same page.

If you and your partner have different texting preferences, try talking in person about the ways you best communicate. You should never have to feel bad for being yourself or expressing your needs. “Stop yourself from being dragged into their manipulative mind games,” Cox says. “At a certain point, it gets boring.”

3. They’re Constantly Talking About Other People

As iconic comedian and general queen Ali Wong will tell you, one of the best parts of having a partner is getting to gossip with them. But if your boo is constantly talking about their ex or generally trying to make you jealous, Cox says that it may be time to check in. Additionally, if your partner is “always being vague about what they are doing or where the relationship is going,” Cox says that can also signal shady behavior.

Ultimately, when you’re trying to build a real connection with someone, and you’re being met with shadiness and vagueness, the best solution is to talk about it. “Sometimes it hurts, but if someone really wants to talk to you, they will,” says Cox. “And if they don’t, they won’t,” Cox says. “You can’t force communication or make someone like you.” If you find yourself questioning your partner’s texting, try talking to them in person about it. You deserve someone who’s going to be straight up with you all the time, IRL and on the phone.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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When Should You Say ‘I Love You’ in a Relationship?

One of the most common early relationship experiences is deciding when to say “I love you”—that is, of course, after you figure out you are in fact in love withyour partner. It’s not just timing that’s an emotional struggle. There’s where to say it, how soon is too soon, and what to do if the other person doesn’t say it back…ever.

Yep, dropping the L-bomb is a tricky romantic milestone. To get clarity on the exact right time and how you’ll know you’re ready and really feeling it, we reached out to relationship experts. Here are the three guidelines they advise.

Consider putting it off at least 3 months

Of course, every relationship is different. If you truly believe you’re in love by the second date and your heart is about ready to thump out of your chest if you don’t share the realization, then by all means, go for it.

But more often than not, even if you think you’re in love, consider waiting. That’s because the progression of love takes time, at least three months, Rebekah Montgomery, PhD, a therapist in private practice in Washington, DC, tells Health. If you think you feel it beforehand, it’s probably lust, infatuation, idealization, or chemistry.

This is because romantic love has a lot to do with amassed experiences with the person you’re dating. “How deeply do you know them—like, really know them?” Montgomery says. “You can fall in love with someone when things are going well and you’re having fun, but how about during stressful times, extended periods of time in each other’s company, traveling together, or when one of you is sick, vulnerable, or not at your best?”

Make sure your mindset has gone from “me” to “we”

Let’s say the relationship has lasted and you’ve been through less-than-ideal circumstances together. When you start reconfiguring your world around the other person, and you feel comfortable letting down your guard and sharing your deepest fears, needs, and desires, “it is likely love,” Marisa T. Cohen, PhD, relationship researcher and author of From First Kiss to Forever, tells Health. “When you constantly think about the other person, and you value the person for all of their strengths and faults, it is likely love.”

Wait until you won’t care if they don’t say it back

This one is a biggie. “The most critical aspect of deciding when to say ‘I love you’ is waiting until you feel comfortable with whatever the outcome is,” Montgomery says. “You want to feel good sharing how you feel, even if your partner isn’t quite ready to reciprocate.”

Montgomery emphasizes that you shouldn’t panic if they don’t return those three little words right away. “In fact, it’s even good to let the other person know you don’t need them to say it back,” she says. “It’s unrealistic to expect that two different people would experience the same exact emotions with the same exact timing.” In a relationship, you will be ready for things at different times: the first kiss, sex, moving in together, etc. “It’s about navigating the natural differences in timing,” she adds.

Also, a person’s definition of love may change with time and age, or over the course of a single relationship. “Infatuation, or the period of time in which you are totally absorbed in another person—see the world through rose-colored glasses, potentially ignore red flags—has been shown to last up to two years,” she says. “It’s not that a person needs to wait two years to say ‘I love you,’ but the ‘I love you’ can communicate different things, and the meaning behind it will evolve.”

Just don’t worry if they don’t say it back right away. Unless your partner explains that they don’t see those feelings coming at all, it’s more important that they’re putting forth effort to grow the relationship and they take their time to say those three little words. An honest, sincere “I love you” from someone you’re sure you love is worth the wait.

 

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Murder Mystery Weekend – Chapter 6

I met the three of them downtown. We exchanged hugs and greetings.

– “Ee,” I said, “it’s really nice of you to host us all for the long weekend.”

– “Are you kidding?” she replied. “You guys are doing me a favour. I can’t close the cottage by myself. As for the murder mystery, Teresa is doing all of the work.”

– “It’s going to be so much fun!” enthused Claire. Was she looking at me when she said that?

– “Epic.” said Leo. “C’mon, wingman – let’s get this show on the road.”

It was fun. Leo found his costume quickly, because he knew exactly what he wanted: Jack Sparrow. I tried to talk him out of it, but for once, Leo was right. He looked like Johnny Depp’s shorter and uglier brother, but he did bear a bit of a resemblance to Keith Richards. He also insisted on every accessory he could find, stuck in his belt, tucked into his sash, or somehow dangling from his coat. He looked like some kind of pirate Christmas tree.

The overall effect was quite comical, but the more I looked at it, the more I began to think that it might work. The girls laughed, of course. But then Eliza said: “You look great!”. Leo turned to me with a look of pure triumph, and preened like a peacock.

With his gear stowed away, we could then turn to a more enjoyable pastime: watching the two girls try on costumes. Eliza didn’t think she could pull off a pirate, and they didn’t have much in her size anyway. But then she had an idea.

– “What if I went as a tavern wench? A tempting trollop, or something like that?”

– “A tempting trollop?” I echoed. “Did you just say that?”

– “Shut up Colin. You know what I meant.” She punched my arm playfully.

Eliza tried on a couple of costumes, each of which featured low-cut tops. I’m not ashamed to say that Leo and I both stood up to get a better view.

She found a pair of high-heeled leather boots, and a brightly-patterned skirt, with a fluffy petticoat. Then she uncovered a broad leather belt, and a supple leather vest. It was probably a couple of sizes too big for her, but she needed room for her oversize chest, and the belt held it all together. The piece de resistance, though, was the frilly white shirt. It left her shoulders bare, and revealed a considerable expanse of her bosom.

Leo and I were too afraid to say anything. She looked … scorching hot. Did I mention that costumes were an aphrodisiac? If this had really been the 17th century, I would have wanted to take her into a back room, bend her over, flip up her skirts, and fuck her from behind like a madman. Forget the 17th century – I wanted to do that now. I glanced at Leo. From the look on his face, he was having similar thoughts.

Claire saved us. “Oh, Ee – that’s it. That one.” Her neighing laugh broke the spell. The girls went for a closer look in a mirror.

“Ho-ly shit.” whispered Leo.

– “Amen, brother.” I whispered back.

Luckily for me, Eliza kept her provocative costume on while Claire continued to go in and out of the change room. Lucky, because Leo’s attention was occupied while his sister put on a show. And what a show. The little minx kept trying on more and more revealing combinations.

Claire found a scarlet head scarf, and a huge pair of hoop earrings. She really liked a dark red skirt with black trim, and liked it even better when she pulled up one side and tucked it into her little belt. This revealed one leg to the knee, but the other leg was uncovered to mid-thigh. If you’re old enough to remember Cyd Charisse, you can imagine what Claire looked like.

She added a little black bustier with laces that looked like crossed bones, attached to skull-shaped buttons. She found another shirt like Eliza’s, with short, puffy sleeves, that left her shoulders and upper chest bare. She wasn’t showing much cleavage, but the little bustier lifted her boobs and thrust them forward. That’s when I noticed the magic of the shirt she wore. It did nothing to hide her breasts. Instead, it simply accentuated their shape.

Claire looked incredible. Just looking at her made me think of sex. I would have to rethink my costume, if I was going to have an erection most of the weekend.

– “Jesus, Claire!” said her brother. “How much skin you gonna show?”

She struck a pose, with one hand on her hip. “I didn’t hear you complain about Ee’s costume.” she said.

Eliza and I moved a bit further away, to let the siblings have one of their traditional arguments.

– “Is this too revealing? What do you think, Colin?” Eliza asked me, indicating her costume.

– “Ee, you look fantastic.” I answered. “Very, very sexy. A tempting trollop indeed.”

– “What about you? What are you going to get?”

– “Already did.” I told her. “It’s at home.”

– “Aww.” she said. “You get to see ours, but we don’t get to see yours?”

– “You will.”

If Eliza and Claire were going to look like this, I could only imagine what the four other women would be wearing. I was going to be rock hard the whole weekend.

 

 

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