Let's Play "Looney Bin"!
Have you heard about the latest game? It's called "Looney Bin". You could
call it "Multiple Insanity", "Super Stupidity", or whatever you want, but
here is how it is played:
All the players - and there is a great many of them - gather in a large
confined area, which is also occupied by people who are NOT playing "Looney
Bin". Each player arms himself with a club, the size of which is limited by
regulations of the game to one kilogram (that's 2.2 lbs.). Some players use
a hinged club, the effect of which is to transmit additional energy, so that
their clubs are the equivalent of 2 kilograms - sometimes called "2KG peak
The game has an announced starting time, at which time the players - and
there are a great many of them, as we said - proceed to attract the
attention of other players by hitting them over the head with their clubs.
As the area where the game is played is usually crowded, a great many who
are NOT players get hit over the head with one kilogram, which they do not
like at all.
The objective of the game is to see how many players can be hit over the
head with one's one kilogram club. Each player must keep a record, called a
log (not to be confused with the club, which is a small log of another
type). The best players can hit other players over the head with their club
while keeping their log with the other hand. Upon being hit over the head,
a player announces (a) how sharp the blow was, rated on a 1 to 5 scale; and
(b) the pressure of the blow, rated on a 1 to 9 scale. Thus, upon being
struck, the player shouts "5-9", and proceeds to exchange blows with the
player who has just bounced his club off the first player's head.
Obviously, it takes a pretty hard head to play this game, but after
partaking in a number of such contests, one's head becomes almost impervious
to the blows. Many players drop their participation in such events, of
course, since they see no point to either being hit on the head, or
exercising violence upon others.
Some parts of the playing area are more accessible than others, and the real
challenge to a player is to hit the more remotely located players. When
everybody ties to do this, what is known as a "pile-up" occurs, with dozens
of players being hit over the head at once, and hardly anyone ever hitting
the head of the player at which he had taken aim. Such "pile-ups" are very
frustrating, and many players have abandoned the game because of them. The
winner of the game is the player who has swung his club most effectively,
hitting more players on the head than anyone else, and in more areas of the
playing space. Indeed, it is considered a great achievement to have hit
people on the head in every square foot of the playing area!
A ticklish situation has developed as a result of so many games of "Looney
Bin" being played in the playing area. Indeed, some group or other is
sponsoring a game almost every weekend. The people who don't like to play
"Looney Bin" actually outnumber by far those who are avid "Loonie's." But,
when the non-players object to filling up the large confined area, of which
we spoke, with club wielding "loonies", the objectors are called - of all
things - "soreheads". If their heads are sore, it is pretty obvious what
made them so.
The game is played rougher in some parts of he country than in others.
Cheating consists primarily of using a heavier club than the 1 kilogram
rules allow. In California, it is said, clubs weighing several
kilograms -as much as 18 kilograms having been reported - are sometimes
used, and the hit other players' heads very, very hard. They hit
non-players just as hard, and some non-players would like to abolish "Looney
Bin" once and for all. How about you?
(The above was sent in by K3WS and is taken from "Auto-Call" (Washington,
D.C.) April 1971. He writes, "There is a lesson here . but I'm not sure
what it is! By the way, W8AP is not anti-contest and is frequently in there
with the rest of us.")
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