The Scoop on the Spoon Game

Colette Combs, Editor

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The year was 2015, and freshman class representative Cam Burkacki ‘19 was eager to engage Pingree’s newest class in a collaborative game. One fateful morning meeting, he announced a class-wide tag game with the winner being awarded the candy of their choice. This was the birth of the infamous spoon game.

Since 2015, the spoon game has grown outside of the class of 2019. After the success of the game freshman year, it was brought to the entire school in 2017 and again this year. The spoon game did a great job of bringing the class of 2019 together and fostered healthy competition. This year, the added element of competing for house points added a new twist to the game.

The premise of the game is to tag other participating students out and be the last player standing. Every day, players must keep their plastic spoon in a specific place on their body. If their spoon is not on the designated place, they can be tagged out. As the game progresses, the daily locations of the spoon get increasingly challenging. This year, the spoon needed to be in your left hand on the first day. Inside your elbow, balanced on your head, balanced on your shoulder, and balanced on the back of your hand were the respective assigned locations for the next five days of the game. At the beginning of the game, everyone is secretly assigned someone to tag out. Once they tag that person out, they assume the responsibility of tagging the assigned person of whoever they just tagged out. Eventually, two players are left with the same goal of tagging each other out. As challenges get harder and more and more people get tagged out, the game gets much more intense.

The biggest challenge of the spoon game is that you never know who has you, so you have to constantly be on alert. Although at one moment you may know who is trying to tag you, they could be tagged out at any moment. This leaves another anonymous person as your tagger. As the days go on, its harder to always keep your spoon in place, so looking out for potential taggers becomes an important aspect of the game. The only times participating students are safe from the threat of being tagged is during class times and afterschool activities. During free periods, breaks, advisory periods, and every other class-free moment from the first bell in the morning to the last bell at 2:40, no one is safe.

This year, students were invited to sign up to participate in the game but were not auto-enrolled. While this solved the issue of disinterested students not tagging others and stalling the game’s progress, it created other issues. Namely, many people who actually wanted to play the game forgot to sign up and lost the opportunity to do so before the spoons were distributed. On Wednesday, May 8th, Colette Combs ‘19, and Tyler Howe ‘22 were the last two students in the game, both from house Carnelian. Both students were declared winners of the 2019 spoon game. The last five players left in the game were also rewarded.

The spoon game has become somewhat of a Pingree tradition, and it will be interesting to see what happens when its founding father, Burkacki, leaves Pingree this year.