Mental Floss


Chris Higgins

Do you work in an office? Do you like wasting time? How about hitting people in the face with beachballs? If you answered yes to any of these, I hereby command you to investigate Faceball, invented at Flickr, but now sweeping offices worldwide.

The game is pretty simple -- two people sit in office chairs, ten feet from each other, and throw beachballs at each other's faces. No ducking is allowed. If you score a face-hit, you keep throwing until you miss, gaining points all the while. After an agreed-upon number of rounds (generally five), the player with the most points wins. (If this explanation isn't enough, check out the video introduction on the Faceball site - scroll down.)

Faceball is all about documentation -- because Flickr staffers invented it, they present tons of photos of beachballs hitting faces. The quintessential Faceball photo shows a beachball impacting a person's face -- silly and a bit humiliating. Faceball co-creator John Allspaw explains that the game was invented "to relieve work stress and replace it with humiliation and embarrassment."

See also: a news story (video) from CBS 5 about the game. Also: a Flickr Blog entry about the game.