Monday, February 06, 2006

The Natalie Becker Game

Yesterday at the Karen Zoid concert held at Kirstenbosch my friends and I held the inaugural "The Natalie Becker Game", as Natalie Becker was MCing the show. The game came about after three of us left the You Jazz show at this year's Suidoosterfees, which was held a few weeks ago, feeling utterley appalled and embarrassed at Natalie Becker's bad MCing. She consulted notes constantly while she was on stage, paced up and down a lot, and (blasphemy!) got well-known local jazz vocalist Tina Schouw's name wrong (confusing it with the name of another performer)...twice!

Not convinced that her MCing at Kirstenbosch would be any better, we meticulously studied her speech and mannerisms and began to assign points to judge her performance and set down a set of rules by which future performances may be judged, since it seems that everyone likes to hire her to host musical events and it's imperative that we know whether she's getting any better or whether there just is no hope.

The Natalie Becker Game: Karen Zoid At Kirstenbosch (05 February 2006)
Scorecard:
-1: Being visible backstage consulting notes.
+1: Getting her name ("Natalie Becker") correct.
+1: Getting the performer's name ("Karen Zoid") correct, while being on stage with notes.
-2: Being on stage with notes that are consulted.
+1: Successfully (and correctly) using the phrase: "On my left...your right", while pointing out something to the right of the stage.
+1: Successfully (and correctly) using the phrase: "On my right...your left", while pointing out something to the left of the stage.
+1: Getting the name of the sponsor's new product ("Peartiser") correct.
-1: Getting the name of the sponsor's new product wrong ("Peachtiser") at a previous concert and then apologising for that at this concert.
+2: Pronouncing the four-syllable word "perimeter" correctly.
+3: Using the four-syllable word "perimeter" correctly in a sentence.
-1: Getting the name of a guy that was backstage holding a lost wallet wrong.
Total: +5

Other Negative Scoring Possibilities:
-1: Saying "okay" more than three times (minus one point for each subsequent use).
-1: Saying "Natalie Becker" more than twice (minus one point for each subsequent use).
-5: Getting a performer's name wrong (minus five points for each subsequent blunder).
-15: Getting a famous performer's name wrong (minus 15 points for each subsequent blunder).

Other Positive Scoring Possibilities:
+2: Getting a performer's name correct without consulting notes.
+2: Standing still for more than 30 seconds (award at your discretion). [Thanks Michelle!]

Artifacts:
Shame Artifact (deduct two points from Natalie Becker's score): You may induce (in other words, call out: "Shame Artifact!") the Shame Artifact once per game. The Shame Artifact is a negative points bonus for when Natalie Becker incorrectly states a famous performer's name more than once during a show.

Footnote
Usually only Natalie Becker can be awarded points in the The Natalie Becker Game, but Karen Zoid surprised us all on Sunday by managing to score points in the The Natalie Becker Game. This is a rare achievement, so I'm documenting it here.
Scorecard:
+15: Mocking the announcement Natalie Becker had had to make to ask people not to get up and swarm the front of the stage as there were live electrical cables running along the ground at the front of the stage and it could be dangerous.
+5: Referring to Natalie Becker as "the lady" and not "Natalie Becker" (probably because she couldn't remember Natalie Becker's name) when she was mocking Natalie Becker's announcement that people must not get up and go to the front as there were live electrical cables that could be dangerous. Huzzah!
Total: +20

Please feel free to post your own encounters and scorecards in this post's comments section. We are also always looking for new rules, if anyone has any suggestions.

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