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Silly Q & A

3D purple question mark
No. of Players: 8+
Type of Game: written and spoken
What you need: pen and paper


To create a series of silly questions and answers.

How to play

Players divide into two teams – the questioners and answerers – and each team elects a leader. The leader of the questioner team writes down a question for each member of his team to ask. The leader of the answerer team writes down an answer for each member of his team to answer. The two leaders do not consult each other, other than agreeing beforehand on the format of questions and answers. For instance, all questions and answers must begin with 'When,' or all questions must begin with 'Who is' and all answers must name a person. Alternatively, no leader is elected and each member comes up with questions and answers on his own.

The two teams then form two lines and their leaders pass out or whisper the questions and answers to their members. The first player in the questioner team asks his question out loud and the first player in the answerer team gives his prepared answer. Once the questions and answers are exhausted, the teams switch roles so that questioners becoming answerers, and vice versa. There is no scoring in this game. The enjoyment comes from the silly pairings of questions and answers that this game often produces.


Angelina and Brad have been elected the leaders of the questioner and answerer teams, respectively. They agree that all questions will begin with 'Why' and all answers will begin with 'Because.' Once they have written their questions and answers, and have passed them to their team members, the first round begins:

Angelina: Why do you scream for help?
Brad: Because her name meant subtlety.
Carli: Why did the car stop on the road?
Danica: Because I could save more at the other store.
Elijah: Why are penguins flightless?
Frida: Because the report was too long to read.
Grace: Why didn't the flight serve a meal?
Helen: Because they were the wrong size screws.

And so on.

Did you know?

The historical origins of the question mark is (pardon the pun) a bit of a question mark.

scroll with letters and words QUESTIO, QO, and ?

One theory says that scholars in the Middle Ages would write the Latin word quaestio at the end of a sentence to show it was a question. Since this was rather cumbersome to write out each time, it was eventually abbreviated. First to qo, then to q on top of o, and finally into the "?" symbol we know today. This is much like how our own cursive signature, which we once perfected in third grade, eventually morphed into the squiggly lines we now use as adults. But alas, there is little evidence to back up this theory.

cat with tail in shape of question mark, with Egyptian pyramids

A competing theory, also unsubstantiated, argues that the curve of the question mark traces back to the ancient Egyptians. Since Egyptians were famed for their worship of cats, it makes sense they would have been inspired by the similar shape of an inquisitive cat's tail.

man thinking, with question marks

In the end, perhaps it's appropriate this question remains a mystery. What do you think?

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