I guess you knew more of these were coming, cause, well, I said a hundred, then only posted ten. So yep, here’s more. Main thing to keep in mind as you read the list, and do the list, is that just trying them will put you in a feeling of play. Play is a mindset. Anxiety is a mindset. Generally the two don’t get along, and it’s hard to do both. So if you’re feeling anxious, give one of these a try. You play enough, and that’ll become your natural mindset. Then, if you miss it, you’ll have to find a list of 100 ways to make yourself anxious again.
But that’s future talk. For now, this…
I avoided juggling because I don’t like the learning process part of things where you look like an idiot. (That damn guitar is still haunting me from the corner.) But it’s pretty simple to learn, (here’s a link to a tutorial vid) and the neighbours can’t hear how crappy you are, except for constant thumping as the balls hit the ground. Or chainsaws, or flaming chainsaws, or whatever you’re using.
If you get really good, juggle with a friend. I haven’t done it, but I’ve seen it on TV. You can form a group and call yourselves Juggalos. What? It’s taken? Oh. Some other name then.
So many things you can do with playing cards. I mean, they’re playing cards. You can flick them into bins. You can stack them into houses. You can do magic tricks with them. Actually, I think that’s about it.
Oh! Card games. Play Euchre, or Solitaire, or Asshole, or Cribbage, or Hearts, or Poker, or War, or Banana Jams, or Go Fish, or… you get the point. Pull out a deck of cards during lunch break and your coworkers will say, “I can’t, I’ve got a whole bunch of shit to catch up on…” but they’ll follow that up with, “…ah okay, one game.” (I made up Banana Jams, so feel free to invent that one.)
13) Throw things!
If someone asks you to pass something, throw it. That’s it. Enjoy the thrill as it’s in the air and neither or you know if it’s going to be caught. “Hand me the keys?” Throw ‘em! “Can I have one of those candies?” Throw it! “Can I hold your baby?” Throw it! Wait, scratch that one. Unless… nope, scratch that one.
14) Video games!
Oh man, I was a Rock Band god. I mean, I wouldn’t get perfect scores or anything, but on Easy I was good enough to unlock the next song and do an okay version of that one too. And while I didn’t really do any of the “missions,” I was quite the bad ass on Grand Theft Auto. Driving around listening to aggressive music, doing rolling stops, never indicating a turn. Also Wii. I played Wii.
Now I’m into whatever the current games are that people are into. Warcraft?
Anyway, find a game you find fun and play it. Remember, the person who laughs the most wins! Unless of course the game has some sort of alternative scoring system.
Is it weird that I didn’t talk about this until now? Probably. But hey, that’s improv. Weird. But fun. So fun. If I could just take a moment to talk about how much it changed my life, this is the moment. It changed my life. Take a class or go see a show and be inspired to take a class. Look up some games here and play them, and check out People & Chairs to learn everything improv. Don’t wait, play now!
Play with yourself. Literally. Hey, if it’s fun and enjoyable, do it. This totally counts as play.
I don’t want to get all downer here, but I’ll just say be careful of porn. Remember, play is about enjoying what you’re doing and having fun. If you find yourself watching porn and not enjoying it, but needing it, or being numb to it, shut that shit off. Make sure it stays fun. Not sure what photo to put with this one.
Dance like nobody’s watching. How do you do that? Dance when nobody is watching. In your home. Alone. Blinds drawn. Away from all mirrors. In front of a camera doing a live feed to the internets. (Last part optional.)
Put on some music (some positive mood-boosting song you love) and just see what happens. If what happens is a head bob, enjoy that. If what happens is terrible dancing, great! In fact, dance terribly on purpose. That way if you naturally dance terribly you can tell yourself you’re doing it on purpose and laugh and laugh and dance and respond to the live comments streaming in. (Last part optional.)
I know most of us hesitate to draw because we suck at it. But this is drawing for fun! One thing I do to break that scary blank page moment of “What should I draw?” is stamp a bunch of dots down on the page. Then I play connect the dots with those random dots and fill in what it is. This also works with scribbling. Scribble randomly, then start to turn it into something. That way, if it looks “bad” it’s not my fault, if anything I should be impressed that I made something so good out of what I had to start with. Here’s an example. Not bad for a scribble, huh?
Think of this as the writing version of scribbling. Just grab a piece of paper and a pen and write something. Anything. Do some stream of consciousness shit without stopping. If a judgement comes, write that down too. Get it all down, and some will be crap or some will be less crap. And who cares? Just enjoy the process of writing. Is that possible? I mean, I’m having fun writing this. Mostly I liked writing Masturbating as a form of play. Still happy with that.
20) Clap last!
You know when you’re in a meeting and you have to clap for something? The next time that happens, try to be the last clap heard. And if someone else is doing it too, then throw in a random one, well after clap time is over. It’s a way to make the office tolerable! And even if it’s just you playing with yourself (not literally in this instance), it’s still fun to do.