Of things concerning rock, paper, scissors, and other weapons

One of the common ways to decide things, or to just have fun with just your body parts is using the hand game jan-ken-pon or more commonly known in English as rock-paper-scissors. It’s quite a decision making tool, and it has been used in auctions and by CEOs in their companies to make decisions. This article is about the hand game, how to relatively improve it, and how to add some spices to it as well 😉

Upping the ante

It has been proverbially said that people who know or have been acquainted with each other will often tie 75%-80% every time. This is also due to the limited outcomes of the conventional 3-weaponed rock-paper-scissors game. So to introduce a little more excitement (albeit being just a little more complicated. Just a little, in my opinion 🙂 ) we add 2 more weapons. One weapon is Spock, which is signified by the Vulcan salute, and lizard, which is signified by creating a sock-puppet looking hand gesture. The game resolution is thus summarized as follows

SCISSORS cuts paper, PAPER covers ROCK

ROCK crushes LIZARD, LIZARD poisons SPOCK

SPOCK smashes SCISSORS, SCISSORS decapitates LIZARD

LIZARD eats PAPER, PAPER disproves SPOCK

SPOCK vaporizes ROCK, ROCK crushes SCISSORS

If you’ve been watching the sitcom The Big Bang Theory, my favorite sitcom, you’ll notice they have an episode wherein they featured this updated hand game. This was in the episode “The Lizard-Spock Expansion” in 2008. What you may not know is the originator is apparently Sam Kass, and that his version of the game was featured in an online article of The Times back in 2005. The new rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock can be easily understood (I think) with this graphical representation:

rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock

rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock

Spicing things up a little i.e. blaspheming a little 😉

Some of you may already know that cool flash-based game known as Faith Fighter, wherein you can pit Jesus, Yahweh, Mohamed, Ganesh, and other spiritual icons against each other, Street Fighter style. But since we’re talking about hand games or games you can play even without technology, we’ll spice things up a little. I’ve created my own version of the hand game, featuring some of our (again) favorite religious icons. And it goes like so

JESUS guts MOHAMED, MOHAMED stabs SHIVA

SHIVA slices GANESH, GANESH circumcises YAHWEH

YAHWEH sacrifices JESUS, JESUS amputates SHIVA

SHIVA castrates YAHWEH, YAHWEH stones MOHAMED

MOHAMED bombs GANESH, GANESH blasphemes JESUS

It may look more complex at first than rock-paper-scissors (or rock-paper-scissors-lizard-spock) but I think it’s simpler because (1) you don’t have to remember all the violent verbs when playing the game 🙂 and (2) you can call it the j-y-g-m-s hand game for obvious reasons, which is shorter than saying rock-paper-scissors. I pronounce it as “jee-gums”. 🙂 Graphically the j-y-g-m-s game is as follows:

j-y-g-m-s

j-y-g-m-s

You can create your own hand symbols. One suggestion of mine is the following:

Jesus – fingers all pointing outwards, towards the same direction (like one-half of clasped hands in a prayer)

Yahweh – create a “Y” using your index and middle finger

Ganesh – create a “G” using your thumb and the remaining 4 fingers

Mohamed – Create an “M” using your index, middle, and ring finger

Shiva – touch your index and thumb fingers together, while pointing the remaining 3 fingers away (like in mediation)

So let the fun times roll, especially during black-outs or at times of (perhaps spiritual) indecision. 🙂 And happy Hanukkah, or whatever that impending holiday that also starts with an “H” is called, to all of you. 😀

Resources, references, and further reading

 
DISCLAIMER: The opinions in this post do not necessarily represent the position of the Filipino Freethinkers.

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