Daily Archives: June 19, 2009

how to play the ABC game on long drives

so the long drive from cincy back to pensacola drove us to playing the ABC game, much as we used to do with youth groups on the way to camps, retreats, concerts, etc.

“yes, yes, but how does one play?” you may be wondering.

it’s simple.

each individual starts with the letter A and, using anything OUTSIDE of the car, van, or bus you’re riding in, finds a word that begins with that letter before moving on to the next letter in the alphabet. each word can only be used once, so the trick is to be the first to say the word and the letter. the person that gets through the entire alphabet first wins!

so, for example: lise and i are driving down the road and she sees a car with an Alabama license plate. she says, “Alabama, A.” and then moves on to B. because i didn’t say it first, she gets the A. i might see a street name “Anandale St.” and a Buick with California plates and if i can say them all fast enough, “Anandale, A; Buick, B; California, C” then i get the three of them. but if lise needs the C and she calls california first, she gets it and i’m still stuck on C.

other rules:

  • INFERRED words don’t count. if i see an Audi and know it’s an Audi but don’t see the word “Audi” on the car? can’t use it.
  • Initials don’t count (unless you agree to it at the beginning – CDL Trucking can’t be used for C).
  • Distracting an opponent in the hopes that they won’t see a letter / word they are looking for is perfectly acceptable.
  • X is a somewhat difficult word – in the past we have allowed that as long as the letter X is IN the word somewhere, it counts. Z can also be included in this rule.
  • Petty bickering over who said it first is counterproductive, as the point of the game is to a) have fun and b) kill time. the bigger the group, the more difficult it is to avoid petty bickering, but appoint a referree just in case.
  • Restroom breaks generally bring a time-out in the game.
  • Writing a word on a piece of paper and sticking the paper out the window probably warrants a penalty of some sort. it’s not acceptable, at any rate.

because we didn’t make the X or Z exception, our game went on for hours, with my winning at approximately 11:30pm in Century, FL as we drove through a School Zone. lise was napping.