I come from a very large household just presently. Since moving to Cape Town four years ago, I’ve lived with many interesting people, on my own, with family, my boyfriend and for sporadic short spurts in New York and London.
Right now I share a commune with sixteen other super people and we all enjoy getting together and socialising either in the conservatory of number 8 or in the garden that is slowly getting there with the addition of herbs, a swing and several pretty tea cups hanging from the big tree.
Being a late-comer to the commune and moving in a good month or so after the others, I was not involved in the conception of ‘Ting’ but was introduced promptly and whole-heartedly and now this incredible game has become one of our favourite pass times and will undoubtedly go down as being synonymous with our time together at The Commune.
So naturally, having all gone through the motions of university together in Cape Town we have as a group drank lovely, repleasant amounts of wine together and ‘Ting’ being the most innovative and entertaining wine-drinking game I have ever come across will ensure that we keep on doing so. I love that it is the brainchild of our commune and that it keeps getting added to and improved upon almost each time we play it, which is usually at least twice a week.
Ting involves a group of about four to six people. Eight is good but more than that and it becomes too crowded around our hideous little foam-green table in the conservatory. Each person has an ‘Avatar’ which is an empty wine bottle. Then there is a Ting King to monitor that the rules are followed and supervise against cheating, those trying to form alliances or skipping penalty sips. Then there is a coin (preferably a R2 and not a tuppance, lire or any other skinny dime as this hinders spinning skill) which each one when it is their turn, spins with a flick of the finger. Here things get incredibly complex and war-like as the person who spins calls out a name from the group. The called player has to then flick the spinning coin into another player’s avatar. You are allowed to guard your avatar by flexing your hand out in the ‘Rock ‘n Roll Salute’ across the base of the bottle. Should the coin get through the hand barrier and ‘ting’ against the bottle, than that person is tainted and it is time for Red Arena. The Ting King yells out ‘Red Arena’ and uses his dork torch (nifty miners’ like headband with a torch attached to the front part) to shine a red light onto the table. The tainted player must pick up his glass of wine and drink from it for as long as the coin spins, after which the Red Arena is replaced by the neutral base of White Arena (white bulb in the dork torch) and the game continues.
There are many intricacies and stratagies that accompany this basic outline of Ting. Expert skills and poised playing stances that are possessed by the most talented of the Ting players in our commune. Their style should be observed, considered and learned. Extra effort can be applied to your advantage in the form of Love Taps, Tinging the bottle neck, deft spinnage and a close surveiling eye at all times in the arena. A good understanding that whatever music play to accompany Ting will set a certain atmosphere. The soundtrack to Tron turned the green table into a war zone while Kate Bush and Stevie Nicks provided a back drop of girly and 80’s empowered weirdness to Ting along to.
This game is totally hilarious and gets more so obviously as you tilt back more Ting penalties.
To find a group of more creative, interesting and fun people to live with would be an obnoxious and silly waste of time when you could all be Tinging along together. A smorgasbord of architects, actors, biologists, rocket scientists, writers, engineers, artists and students creates an unbeatable environment where the conversation rings and tings around our commune. Our small speck of the Cape Town eco-system in which a lot of interesting talk and creativity bubbles through the symposium of Ting.
It is this kind of gathering that invites the interesting, easy-drinking and design savvy wine from Ukuva; The U-Tube. When you all love hanging out together and drinking great quality wine, it’s just easier to have it on tap and keep those bottles for Avatars…