Cards Against Humanity is ruining pre drinks

It’s just scrabble for dickheads

It’s Friday night. You actually went to all your classes this week and you’ve never been so exhausted in all your life. Your dissertation supervisor shat all over your proposal and you’re finally resigned to graduating with a 2:2. Oh, and your childhood pet’s just taken a turn for the worse.

All you want is to escape from your dreadful, monotonous life for two or three hours; that sweet stretch of time between thinking “Actually, I don’t think I’ll bother doing any reading tonight – might have a beer” and saying “I’m really drunk now, I’m going to get a kebab and eat it in my bed while crying on the phone to my sister”. This glorious passage of time, where pain is unwelcome and anxiety impossible, is pre drinks.

Everyone loves pre drinks, and hates everything else.

So,  it is with great sadness that I must announce that pre drinks are being slowly destroyed – from the inside – by boring people, the perennial ruiners of everything anyone’s ever enjoyed.

These boring people – dickheads, even – have been given carte blanche by our easygoing, laissez-faire pre drink mentality, to whip out box after box of the awful game Cards Against Humanity, bringing every pre drinks they can get their greasy mitts on to a grinding halt.

Every pre drinks. Every single one.


No, Gareth, I don’t fancy settling everyone down for a quick game of Cards Against Humanity, I fancy drinking myself into a walking fugue state and busting out some spicy moves to Where Are ü Now.

The game’s boring, for a start – let’s get that out of the way. You literally just plonk together a pre-arranged set up with a pre-written punchline. Most of the time these aren’t funny. Pulling two cards at random from my housemate’s copy got me the following: ‘Studies show that lab rats navigate mazes 50% faster after being exposed to growing a pair’.

‘Surprise sex’ is another knee-slapper in the game, but why don’t we call it what it means? Rape. Let’s just say rape. What is (innocuous question)?. Rape! Everyone laughs, and quite rightly, not just because this is a party but because this is a game for privileged people with neither compassion nor life experience, the perfect breeding ground for a good rape joke.

Yeah, Kyle, honestly, ‘Jade Goody’s cancerous remains’ really is the funniest thing I’ve heard all year. The thought that at any time, you could bust out the idea that Jade Goody’s cancerous remains is your favourite ice cream flavour, or that Jade Goody’s cancerous remains is the best thing about Cameron’s Britain truly boggles the mind and excites me to my very core. What’s that, Kyle? Privileged upbringing? Wore a suit out in freshers? Minimal exposure to the stresses and strains of life which make it difficult for most people to laugh about cancer and death? But how’s the men rights activism going?

In 2014 the creators were pressured into removing a ‘Passable transvestites’ card, which they did, eventually calling it a ‘mean, cheap joke’. They expressed regret, which is all very well until you consider the thousands of copies out there that still include a significant point of trans anxiety- whether or not they ‘pass’ –  as a punchline.

You also have to wonder if they think ‘child abuse’ is a mean, cheap joke- and what about distributing ‘the jews’ as an enabler of popular anti-semitism and normalising expressions of prejudice- it’s just a game, right? You’re supposed to believe it’s the game’s fault you’re saying racist things, and that you’re the one making all the good jokes, until it’s racist, then it’s just the game being twisted.

What exactly is it about Jade Goody’s cancerous remains that makes it not a cheap, mean joke? Sure, we can all see the inherent humour in a mother of two’s tragic and very public death from an agonising battle with cancer, but is it the sort of thing you’d say to your nan?

In fact, is any of this anything you’d say to anyone in your normal life? Cards Against Humanity’s acolytes always bang on about how sick and twisted the game is,  but they’re also the kind of people who enjoy a sordid little private giggle at the things Jimmy Carr says about disabled people.

Worse than that, it goes against everything that makes a good pre drinks- it’s structured and hierarchical, pitting man against man in a battle nobody can truly win, because here’s the thing:

Nobody ever really wins Cards Against Humanity – everyone loses, because you’ve wasted your precious, ever-diminishing time with your friends and loved ones playing Cards Against Humanity, when you should have been doing literally anything else.