Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Apples to Apples

Have you ever played that game, Apples to Apples? It's a really simple game that provides hours of entertainment by mearly matching adjectives to nouns. Flip an adjective from the top of the pile, and everyone chooses an noun from their hand. A judge needs to decide which is the closest to the adjective given. For example, for the adjective "quiet" you could put down "hat" because it makes no noise or "Anne Frank" for purely statistic reasons. The game becomes quite entertaining seeing the random cards people match with the adjectives.

Now, imagine playing this game with one other American, three Koreans, and a British guy. There are many words that have very strong emotions for Americans (it's an American game), like "infomercials" for example, but have little or no meaning for Koreans, or possibly even Brits. Same goes for actors or particularly TV personalities that make their way onto cards. "Rosie O'Donnell" has endless opportunities for amusing matches, but if you're not American (or at least North American) you're probably not ever going to get them.

I've discovered that playing this game with an international crowd has come down to judging the judge of the round and thinking what card HE (or she) will understand the best. My opinion no longer matters in the game. Anyway, it's a new strategy that never occurred to me while playing with all Americans back at home. An interesting cross-cultural experience for you today.


  1. I have enough problems trying to navigate cross-cultural communication without getting embroiled in a game like this, haha! I think I'd most likely explode... literally...