Spamboozled by Boonerisms

by Old Lady Finkle-Race
(California, USA)

Although I have never been diagnosed with dyslexia, I often wonder if I have a mild case of it because I tend to accidentally mix up sounds from one word to another. For example, I may intend to say "oiled bicycle", but the words may come out of my mouth as "boiled icicle".

These consonant reversals could be embarrassing at times and often made me feel quite dumb, especially when speaking in front of large groups of people. However, upon discovering that there is a word for such mix-ups, I began to feel less embarrassed when these "spoonerisms" occurred.

Instead, I began to make it into somewhat of a funny brainstorming word game. Spoonerisms are defined as reversals of sounds in two or more words, often with humorous effect. I turned it into a fun game in which most everyone can participate in, especially adults and older children.

You really do not need any materials to be "Spamboozled by Boonerisms" - just your humor and brain power! Although this game would be fun in-person or in a classroom setting, I decided to start my game via the Internet, just so there wouldn't be frequent dull periods of brainstorming time as there may be if sitting at a table with a group of people trying to think of the funniest spoonerisms they can come up with.

In addition, playing with spoonerisms online cuts any time restraints one may have if coming up with them with someone else in person. I started amongst my friends and family in my e-mail contacts list, e-mailing them all the definition of a spoonerism and providing a couple of examples. Then, I challenged them to come up with their best ones to see who could come up with the funniest or most clever.

I did not expect a big response, but almost everyone replied. The respondents actually came up with some really good ones! Some of my favorites include: - "You're a fart smella" (You're a smart fella) - "Sues and shocks" (Shoes and socks) - "Hollow your fart" (Follow your heart) - "I remember your name perfectly but I can't remember your face".

It became so popular between my friends and family, that one of the participants turned it into somewhat of a chain letter where all of their contacts received an e-mail challenging them to top the spoonerisms that we had already come up with.

People actually responded and we all had a good laugh at all the other spoonerisms strangers came up with, which inspired us to think of more!

Thinking back to how mortified I would be with my spoonerisms in my Speech class, I wish I would have known that there was a word for these tongue twists. I think it would have made it less nerve-racking when I had to get up in front of my class to speak because I would have found some humor in it!

For this reason, I feel that this could be a fun activity for English and Speech class or any kind of course involving public speaking, such as news reporting. You have to rack your brain and be somewhat clever to understand the concept come up with some good ones.

Hearing others' best spoonerisms helps one understand the concept and also is an ice breaker between classmates. If you are in a room full of strangers who you have never seen traces of humor from, you are likely going to be timid when having to present something to them. Sharing a good laugh and perhaps pairing up with another person to play "Spamboozled Boonerisms" could really break the ice and make a shy individual open up and speak in front of their peers more easily, in my opinion.

The great thing about this game is that a wide range of age groups can participate, from the older grade school-aged kids to senior citizens! Also, there are not really any time restraints, even if you participate in this activity in a face-to-face setting.

This activity can last for ten minutes or it could be an ongoing thing.

Another option, especially if the game is being lead by a teacher, would be to split the participants into groups and use a timer to see which group can come up with the most.

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