Are you having a hard time striking up a conversation with someone new?
Are you bored of making small talk with every new person you meet?
Have you spent too much time with your partner and feel like you know everything about them?
Do you have a longing to make deeper connections with people?
The core idea behind Blind Babble was simple: let’s create an environment where young people can meet and learn more about each other in a safe, welcoming environment.
This was in April 2022, when we started to brainstorm ideas on community gatherings we could hold in order to create the strong network of youth inside Auroville.
A Human Library event seemed too grim, a speed dating? Too sexual… Discussion circles? How would that interest a diverse audience and not lead to a fight? After all, we wanted people to leave having made new connections and friends.
Ideas built upon ideas, till we came up with the idea of Blind Babble: a card game that facilitates connections through deep conversations!
In each deck there are a total of 120 questions split into 5 categories: Auroville, Introspection, Personal opinion, Life, Love & Relationships.
Now, how do we keep it respectful, peaceful, and constructive?
*Another long brainstorm and ideas building on ideas*
We came up with two devices:
Firstly, we have set ground rules for every session, written on the back of the deck, and to be read out before starting a session.
Secondly, we were meticulous with picking and phrasing questions.
Avoid religious, political, polarising questions.
Phrase them in such a way that it is clearly asking for personal opinion/ thought, not “the divine truth”.
Great, the cards were ready. Now how do we make this into an event?
Well, we made the matchups random.
‘You walk into the event. You’re nervous, you don’t know most of the people there. You haven’t been asked to sign up, you’re not even sure if the event is really happening, and you have almost no idea what the game actually is about.
Someone comes out and introduces themselves, welcoming you to the event. Gives a brief introduction to the card game, but basically tells you that the game will explain itself to you?? You’re a bit lost and confused, but you pick a small paper chit with a number on it. Number 3. That matches you to a person, someone you’ve never met before, and the only thing in common between you two is the fact that your paper chits both say ‘3’. You sit down, and the game begins!
After 30 minutes which seem to fly by, you get gathered again, and the raffle process repeats itself again, and you’re matched with someone different.
“Meeting two new people in one day!” you think to yourself. The questions are surprisingly deep as well; in the previous round you had picked the card, ‘would you be a good parent?’. You said no and proceeded to give a list of why you wouldn’t be fit for the role, but your match found some of your ‘faults’ to be indicators of a good to-be-parent! Does this change your perception of yourself? Do you agree? Or disagree politely?
After two rounds the event ends, leaving you longing to play just a little longer, or maybe to be matched next time to the beautiful person that your eyes kept wandering to throughout the event? You’ve got to see a lot of different perspectives on certain matters, and some that are similar to yours, providing a small reassurance that maybe your worldview is not that wacky after all!
When, Where, How?
We have just received our order of 100 packs of Blind Babble in February, so we are planning to hold one Blind Babble event every month, at Le Morgan, TownHall, Auroville! It has been a bit of a rollercoaster to get these printed, for it was also the first time we ever designed a card game (and the packaging was harder to design than we thought) but it was a great learning experience. Feel free to come by our office in TownHall, under le Morgan cafe, to pick up a deck!
Written by Namu