1/ Thread about a recent #ArtWar I had with my daughter. This game was taught to me by Rob Lebowitz (flickr.com/photos/lebocom…) 30 years ago when we were chavrutas in yeshiva. He's 100x the artist I am, but we worked well together.
2/ It's a "game" for usually 2 people sharing one paper. Player1 draws an item in the center. We called it the "cheftza" (we were in a Soloveitchik style yeshiva), but in English I now call it the Guffin, after MacGuffin.
3/ The Guffin can be anything and the game is basically an improv cartooning exercise. The goal of player1 is to defend the Guffin while player2 tries to destroy it.

The fun is in the creativity, humor, and art.
4/ The #ArtWar game works best with a "yes and" attitude, so players shouldn't get hung up on logic, as long as everyone engages with a goal to share, be funny, and keep the game going.
5/ Naturally an #ArtWar will have inside jokes. And depending on the resources, the art can take a back seat to the description and interplay. I try to number the entries on the page while playing in order to make it easier to remember the play-by-play.
6/ There's a deep lesson to the #ArtWar as well, even beyond the already beneficial culture of "yes and" in improv collaboration. Taken seriously, the game is a model for problem-solving, especially in logic & in Talmud. (More on that later)
7/ What follows will be the #ArtWar, step-by-step. Player1 is me, JC. Player2 is my daughter SC. Setting is in a high school auditorium that had broken A/C. We were watching my son's graduation. We were using my 3x5" pocket note-pad and pencil. A color scan of the Art War. The page is covered in pencil d
8/ I start off with the Guffin, the (1) COVID19 virus. Of course. #ArtWar is often editorializing about the players' life. The in-person graduation was a miracle after 18 months of being shut-in. We were in the balcony to be distanced, but I still felt it was special. A crude cartoon of a ball with lines coming out of the cente
9/ Her job was to destroy the Guffin, so she drew (2) Bleach.

She explained this was purposeful reference to Trump's press conference when he advised us all to drink a highly toxic substance based on his dirt-level knowledge of science. A spray bottle (like a sanitizer bottle) labeled "bleac
10/ Now my turn. My moves are to either destroy #2 itself or find a way to defend #1 better. I chose destroy.

I drew an (3) Electro-bleach magnet. This would draw away the bleach, leaving my Guffin safe. Easy-peasy. The standard representation of a U-shaped magnet with stripe
11/ OK, her chance to respond. She can either destroy #3 (the magnet), block it, or find a new line of attack. She goes to block it with #4 "Rubber covered man" which would resist the magnet’s electricity. A rough representation - hey, it was tough to draw in the da
12/ As the game goes on, I can either block/destroy the latest Player2 combatant, or do the same for an earlier one. I stay with her latest pawn and draw a (5) rubber eating ocelot.

Ocey the ocelot will eat the rubber suit, leaving the magnet alone to block the bleach. A very crude drawing of what could only charitably be descri
13/ She tries to block my latest pawn with (6) an entrancing fish. This will stop the ocelot, leaving the rubber suit alone etc.

Note, because this is a "yes and" game, I didn't argue that Rubber Eating Ocelots don't eat fish. I have to accept her premise as if it would work. A cartoon representation of a dead fish (the eyes are a lett
14/ Rather than fight the ocelot conundrum, I devise a new line of defense to take out the rubber man, and by doing so reinforce the "editorial-cartoon" nature of the #ArtWar. I write "[Highland Park High School] auditorium heat vs. rubber [suited man] (too hot to wear)" No art, just words. Caption reads: "HP HS Auditorium he
15/ Player2 has even more options than Player1 because she can block/destroy any of my defenses or start a new line of attack. Here she tries to block my latest pawn with a (8) giant fan.

She told me that wanted one of these the whole evening. Ya see, #Artwar fulfills wishes! A rather good depiction of a large circular box fan with 3 b
16/ I go for her latest pawn and draw "(9) Thor's hammer smashing fan." She's an avid reader of @rickriordan and thus an expert in mythology (I've supplemented it with Bulfinch & Emily Wilson; and D&D 1st Edition Deities & Demigods). We're also just watching "The Avengers." A large hammer with a short handle (which I was taught was p
@rickriordan 17/ Here, Player2 has a great plan, she counterattacks in a way to deal my latest gambit #9 and back to #7, with an attack - not just a block - of "(10) Frogs swarm hammer and make it blow up, causing auditorium to explode." Now I need to deal with frogs! The drawing is of a smoking husk of the auditorium. Possibly
@rickriordan 18/ I must choose to defend vs. the rubber man, the bleach, or the immediate threat of the frog swarm. My strategy is to counterattack using my own frog thus limiting her defenses in that any broad based Strategic Frog Initiative would backfire. So: (11) a Bleach eating frog. My drawing of a pretty pathetic looking frog. I did my best.
19/ Player2 responds to the immediate threat with a fine-tuned defense: (12) Frog girlfriend [#11's]. She managed to neutralize only the bleach-eater without negating the frog swarm. A drawing of a female frog. How do we know? Lipstick shaped
20/ Note, we're playing a "yes and" game so I was a bit stuck with the budding romance gambit. E.g. I couldn't respond with "she eats bleach too! That's what brought them together!" I had to work with it. Hence, a (13) Tornado preventing the frogs' date. A set of squiggles in a reverse cone shape to depict the tor
21/ Note, at this point we’re nearing the end of space on the page, so I anticipated this would be the final entry for the #ArtWar. She drew a (14) dragon blows the tornado away. Dragons can do that.

I declared her the winner. And we managed to get through the tedium & heat. A cramped depiction of a dragon with fiery breath. {Oh, that
22/ That's the #ArtWar. She and I look forward to doing these when we're in these situations where (a) we can't look at phones (my phone at least) because it's considered rude, while writing in a pad is socially acceptable, and (b) we'd be otherwise bored out of our gourds.
23/ The #ArtWar is also a great kind of diary entry; a snapshot in time which is both funny & fun for the specific moment and rewards revisiting in the future.

I'm publicizing & publishing this particular entry so I can spread the (idea) wealth.
24/ @threadreaderapp please unroll.

@threader_app please compile.

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More from @JoshuaCypess

6 Jun
47.01/ Week Forty-seven, June 5-11 2021, begins here.

Week 46 below
47.02/ Congratulations to my sister-in-law, @LeahCypess, on being nominated for a Nebula for her Novelette "Stepsister” (from F&SF 5-6/20).

I'm thinking of holding a press conference at Four Season's FantasyLandscaping to question to vote tallies.

47.03/ Totally agree with this. Basically, this is how McCain ended his career, and Romney knows this game too. It's what ego-driven politicians are supposed to know to do!

Read 44 tweets
30 May
46.01/ Week Forty-six, May 29-June 4 2021, begins here.

Week 45 below:
46.02/ Attempting the "Not starting every email/tweet with the word 'so' challenge." This is comes after "Not starting every etc with 'well'"

I understand this is common for academics. In my observation: "well" is to state your hypothesis, "so" the next step in analysis.
46.03/ I just spent hours writing a thread and for some reason the screen skipped and I lost everything. It's hard to explain how destructive this is. First time it's happened and now I will know to continuously back up writing in a side document. But I'm mildly perturbed.
Read 52 tweets
28 May
1/ What to do if an individual from a disempowered/persecuted/minority group says something is offensive to them, but you have a friend from the same group that said it was OK?

Do you believe your friend/acquaintance or the other person?
2/ First, this is not about your need to be the final arbiter. Outside of certain socially-established professions (judge, political rep), you haven't been given the authority to declare whether someone is right or wrong.

To think otherwise is arrogant, no? Who elected *you*?
3/ But as an individual, you have the responsibility to make your own decisions about right and wrong. A friend is someone whose bona-fides you know; ostensibly they will be honest with you. It's reasonable to trust a friend over a stranger.
Read 24 tweets
28 May
1/ People tell me it's possible to be anti-Zionist (AZ) and not antisemitic (AS). Ethical AZ would avoid any hint of AS.

Things you should know to avoid this hatred: (a) AS is a root conspiracy theory that demonizes Jews by attributing them superhuman evil power.
2/ Demonizing is more than "dehumanizing" - which itself leads to ignoring pain (see: racist treatment of Black patients in US health care). Rather, a "demon" is an unstoppable and uniquely evil enemy that requires extraordinary measures to bring them down by any means.
3/ AS is a seductive conspiracy theory because it becomes a simple answer to everything wrong with the world: people who can look like anybody yet, as demons, control everything in their favor.
See: scientificamerican.com/article/people… &
Read 22 tweets
23 May
1/ My "news bias" thread generated a relevant, footnote style, discussion. In it, I expand further on variation within bias. I'm putting the discussion into a thread for easier reading.

It started with this question:
3/ Picked up and responded to by Prof. Goldberg of Bar Ilan (who forwarded the thread, prompting the OP)

Read 24 tweets

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