This week the 2012 Republican National Convention gets under way after a hurricane (not at all a judgment of God this time) delayed proceedings by one day. You won’t see protesters; they’re being kept far, far away from the convention site so that visiting Republicans don’t have to encounter dissent. What you will be seeing are Republican party officials working desperately to build up enthusiasm for their presidential ticket with Mitt Romney on top and Paul Ryan on bottom.
We the writers for Irregular Times will be taking some note, but to be frank, we’re not expecting to see much political innovation during all this staged speechifying. Instead, we consider the 2012 RNC to be a pageant expressing all the elements of the story that Republicans would like to tell the public about themselves — and shoveling off into the shadows all the bits that the Republicans would rather you didn’t see. While watching the procession of increasingly prestigious figures onto the stage, we’ll be having fun, playing a few rounds of 2012 RNC Bingo. The Republican National Convention Bingo game cards we’ve posted below are so you can play along: print them out and have as much of a blast as is possible while people are discussing the power of Jesus to embolden entitlement reform. Print out the five cards below before the big speeches begin. Pass them out to friends and as you watch the debate, place a marker over a square when you hear the phrase in that square uttered. The first to get five in a row wins. (The Elephant is a Free Square — not that the government built that, mind you.)
And hey, why stop at Bingo when the zinging contradictions are making your head hurt? If you’re over 21 and nobody’s driving, you can use the cards in a drinking game: every time one a Republican speechifier makes a reference listed on your card, you’ve gotta take a swig. As in politics, the last person standing is the winner.
In case you’re feeling adventurous, here’s a blank bingo card for you to fill in with your own guesses.