The Ham Pin, Smarty Pants Lies

closePlease note: This post was published over a year ago, so please be aware that its content may not be quite so accurate anymore. Also, the format of the site has changed since it was published, so please excuse any formatting issues.

Last night Phoenix, Morah, and I were over at Mike and Emily’s apartment for an evening of dinner and playing the Wii. We started off bowling on Wii Sports, and while playing, I coined a new phrase that I hope quickly enters the lexicon of bowlers everywhere: the ham pin.

We all know that 3 strikes in a row is called a turkey, but what do you say when you get 2 strikes in a row, then only manage to knock down 9 pins? That 1 remaining pin is what we’ve taken to calling “the ham pin.” So the next time you’re bowling and you miss that turkey by a single pin, you can tell everyone that the ham pin is to blame.

Later in the evening we played the excellent trivia game Smarty Pants. When the game ends, it tries to help the losers feel a little better about themselves by telling them what they were the best at, despite not winning the game. For example, it will congratulate you on correctly answering more questions in a given category than anyone else, or laud you as being the fastest buzzer. We have noticed, however, that sometimes the fastest buzzer didn’t seem to be the fastest buzzer. We also wondered what award a player would receive if they didn’t play – that is, if someone never buzzed in or attempted to answer any of the questions, what award could they possibly get? We decided to test the system.

We played a short game with 2 players, one of whom never buzzed in. At all. Ever. The other player buzzed in every single time, and even when we couldn’t help her answer correctly, the other player wouldn’t even move their Wiimote. At the end of the game, with zero points, the player who had never buzzed in was clearly the loser. With what kudos could the game possibly award her? Why, the fastest buzzer, of course. Naturally, this led us to wonder what would happen if the game was played with multiple non-participating players. Unfortunately, it was late and Morah and I had to leave, so we’ll just have to hope that Mike, Emily, or Phoenix run the test and post the results.

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