For the Hanukkah season, the company behind Cards Against Humanity—that “party game for horrible people” you totally came up with mid-bong hit in college that one time—ran a promotion called “Eight Sensible Gifts.” Basically, for $15, Cards Against Humanity—whose reputation is apparently so strong that it once got 30,000 people to buy pieces of bullshit on Black Friday (I’m not bullshitting you here)—would send you eight mystery gifts.
Together, said Cards Against Humanity, there’s an overall/meta-type puzzle to solve, which I didn’t, because I just wanted to just open my gifts and not analyze them (c’mon, it was the holidays). Without that link, the gifts were pretty rad anyhow. Here’s the rundown of the some of the highlights of the eight gifts, which, if I may, did not come consecutively. The latter half of the gifts came after Hanukkah, so I weeped a ‘lil, but then read the following disclaimer: “The mail can be unreliable during the holidays, but they’ll get the job done, like Moses in the desert…[so] please wait until January before you angrily pee yourself…” Pee.
Gifts 1, 2, and 3: Socks—cheap ones—at the top of which had a mini menorah sewn on with the corresponding night (e.g. night #1—the shamash and one candle; night #2—the shamash and two candles). Underwhelming, but cute and fun: each pair of socks was stapled onto a card that came with a quote. They were:
1. “I never leave home without a nice pair of socks” — Benjamin Franklin
2. “You can never have too many socks.” — Mahatma Gandhi
3. “I don’t care for socks.” —Adolf Hitler.
Gift 5: A big donation to WBEZ, Chicago’s NPR Station. And it came with a cool mini-notebook. Hey, OK nice.
Gift 6: Cards Against Humanity bought their entire card-printing operation in China a week-long vacation. Rad again. Some tzedakah here, especially given the fact that the Chinese employees wrote personalized notes, which, really, was the gift.
Gift 7: Cards Against Humanity bought Tête de Faune, an original 1962 Picasso. They’re letting people vote on what to do with it. Results pending.
Tons of cool writings and trinkets came with these gifts, including a number of comics and letters of life advice, the aforementioned notebook, and even a map. But the best part of these gifts were the two sets of “Jew Packs” that I now get to insert into my Cards Against Humanity Set, which makes people groan, “I got one of those Jewish cards.” (Haters, as they say, ‘gon hate.)
The cards came in these nice blue sleeves upon which four “Fun Facts” were written, to get the mood started:
Fun fact #1: 100% of the Cards Against Humanity writers are Jewish. Can you believe it? A Jewish comedy writer! Anything is possible in 2015.
Fun fact #2: Natalie Portman is a sex golem created by Jewish wizards over 2,000 years ago.
Fun fact #3: It’s true! Jews have a ton of money!
Fun fact #4: Did you get enough to eat? Are you sure?
Now’s the time when I tell you how to play Cards Against Humanity in baseline form. There are two sets of cards: question or fill-in-the-blank cards, and answer cards. Basically, one person plays a question or fill-in-the-blank card, and then everybody else in the room—your friends with (hopefully) sick minds—play answer cards, face down. Then the person who selected the question or fill-in-the-blank card gets to choose the pairing he or she likes best. The announcement of these pairings can lead to laughter; and laughter, I’ve heard is an antidote to much of life’s foibles.
Say, for example, that you were to play Cards Against Humanity using the Jew Packs I received. A potential pairing could be:
What’s so important that you can’t call your mother right now?
…and a choice between…
The part of Anne Frank’s diary where she talks about her vagina.
Hiding from the Nazis.
(Hey now, I didn’t make these up.)
Here are some other highlights from Cards Against Humanity’s sense of humor:
— Can’t you see? The Jews are behind everything—the banks, the media, even ___________!
— Coming to Broadway next season: ” __________ on the Roof.”
— According to Freud, all children progress through three stages of development: the oral stage, the anal stage, and the ___________ stage.”
— A big brain full of facts and sadness.
— Pork products.
— A lifetime of internalized guilt.
— Whoopi Goldberg
— Chopping off a bit of the penis.
— A little bit of schmutz right there.
— Some kind of concentrated encampment for people.
— Demolishing that ass like a Palestinian village.
Imagine the possibilities. No, really. Do it. I’ll wait, sicko.
Cards Against Humanity’s attention to detail is remarkable, given that these cards have little Stars of David in the corners. And you’d hope so: We deserve it after “wandering the desert for 40 years.” But what’s truly impressive about Cards Against Humanity is that their cards are like a second coming of baseball cards, which are basically worth nothing these days. Take, for example, this auction of seven cards that’s going for over $150—for charity.
Good stuff, CAH. See you next Hanukkah.
Jonathan Zalman is a writer and teacher based in Brooklyn.