On my last day as a language teacher I had a massive headache. I blame all the cider that I had the night before, but there was not a lot of options in terms of calling in sick, so after calling the boss to make sure that it was okay that I wasn’t operating on all cylinders, I limped to class and decided that I was not going to do any teaching. For the next few hours I had them make up stories and write them on the board. The second half of class we decided to play a game. We all wrote words or phrases on scraps of paper and put them into a tine. The first student picked a piece of paper out of the tin and started the story, and the second person pulled a piece of paper and continued the story working that word into the dialogue. We continued with the story until all of the papers had been used. The following is the story that came from that game. The words in bold are the ones that came from the tin.
The Fringe is a very popular festival in Edinburgh. There are a lot of cabaret performers, but one was better than all of the others. While she was performing, she slipped and fell on the stage. After she fell, a crazy man from the audience came rushing forward and pulled the woman off the stage. He went running off and the audience is too stunned to do anything to help the poor performer. While this is going on, there is a juggler across the street who is trying to put on a free show for the people walking by. While he is trying to gather a crowd, the crazy man goes back to the stage and starts yelling at the crowd about a trip he took in an African Safari Park. People were a bit frightened by it, so they moved across the street to watch the juggler. The juggler needed some volunteers from the audience because his next trip involved a jump rope. He found two kids, including one who was a teacher’s pet. The teacher’s pet wanted to make sure that the performance was perfect. The juggler did his juggling while he was jumping rope. Across the street, the crazy man was still talking about the safari park, and while he rants, he remembers a billboard that he saw once for a zoo in Spain that he had always wanted to go to. This makes him sad again, so he gathers up the cabaret performer and runs off to Portabello Beach. While at the beach, the two fall in love and decide to get married while watching a sunset.
A few years later the couple are walking through the village and they find an abandoned dog. The dog was very cute, but the village that the couple lived in did not allow dogs to live in the houses. The couple decided that they needed to find a home for the dog, and in an effort to make him look as cute as possible, they tied colourful balloons to his collar and took him to the next town over. While walking through the town, the couple found a house for sale that had a large heated swimming pool. The couple loved the house, and loved the little dog, so they decided to buy the house and sell their other one. Years pass and now they have a little boy. The little boy does not like other people, so he spends most of his time playing in the front yard with the magic wand that his uncle gave him. The dog tried to play with him, but the boy did not want it. One day, while the dad was looking through boxes, he found a magic key. He remembered that when he was in the Safari park that the key was part of a hidden treasure.
After a lot of searching, the dad locates the treasure map. The dog has died, and so the boy uses his magic wand to turn the dog into a monkey. The dad, the boy and the monkey set off to follow the map and find the treasure that the key unlocks. They finally get to a cave and as they go deeper and deeper into the cave, they worry that they will never find the treasure. They finally enter a room and see the giant box! When the dad puts the key into the lock, he cannot open the box. What no one notices is that a giant stone solider has now blocked the exit from the room. He is a Scottish solider, so he is wearing a kilt. He decides that the boy, the monkey, and the dad cannot leave the room until they answer a question. He asks them, ‘Do you think the haunted house on the island is actually haunted?’ The man starts to get crazy again because there is no way to answer that question. As he gets ready to fight with the solider, the monkey knows that he has to do something to calm everyone down so that the kid doesn’t come to any harm. The monkey starts to do monkey things, and the solider notices this. He throws a banana at the monkey to try and distract him. The monkey catches the banana and while the solider is surprised, the boy, the dad, and the monkey get the box and make their way out of the cave. On the way home, they find the real key to opening the box, and it is in binary code. When they get home, the mom comes out to greet them and announces that she has gotten them a horse. The dad and the boy ride the horse around, and it accidentally steps on the monkey. While the dad is burying the monkey, he remembers a friend of his who might be able to help solve the binary code and open the treasure. He calls his friend on the telephone. While the phone is ringing, his friend tries to get to it. He slips and falls, hurting his foot. While he is in the bathroom using his first aid kit to make his foot feel better, the phone rings again. This time it is a stripper, and she is calling because she can solve the code and open the box of treasure. She finds the dad, and solves the code. With the monkey, dog and horse now dead, the family decides to move back to the beach, and they open the box and live happily ever after with the treasure.
I think that right there is an award winner. They did a really good job of keeping the story going, and it took some very strange turns. I enjoyed it though, and it might be something that I try again with other classes if I make it back into the classroom one day.