February 11, 2007
Kai Bai Bo!
The Korean version of Rock, Paper Scissors involves the added element of violence; making it a version I enjoy much more than the tame American one. Players reach a left hand to grasp their opponents. Sort of a left-handed handshake. With their right hand in a fist, they pound the air in time to the chant: “Kai…Bai…Bo!” On “Bo!” they reveal their choice of flat hand for bo or paper (or cloth), fist for rock or bai, and two fingers extended for kai or scissors. The winner gets to slap their opponent’s hand. The game has a rapid pace: “kai, bai, bo!” slap. “kai, bai, bo” slap.
This morning as two brown eyes peered hopefully over the edge of the bed, as the rain pattered outside the window, Jrex opened bleary eyes, grinned and said, “Kai, Bai, Bo?” I laughed and nodded. We skipped the violence, I mean really, no hitting each other before 10 am right?
Our right hands in fists we pounded, “Kai…bai…bo!” Two scissors.
“Kai…bai…bo!” Two rocks. We both started laughing, “Really, honey, I think we’re taking oneness a little too far here!” I gasped.
“Kai…bai…bo!” Two scissors. More laughter.
“OK. Focus. Once more, with feeling.”
“Kai…bai…bo!” He—bai. Me—bo. “Ha! Have fun, sucka!” (I’m a really good sport)
Here’s a link to a history of the game, which claims it’s mostly Japanese. Clearly the author is a biased reporter who neglects to realize that everything in the world originated in Korea. Just ask my Father-in-law!