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Opposites Day: A Day When Nothing Means What You Think

Off means on. Yes means no. Down means up. Yes, that’s right, it’s the most confusing, bemusing and frustrating day of the year. What day is it? Simple: it’s National Opposite Day. Perhaps the most childish day on the calendar, Opposite Day is your chance to trick people into doing or saying something they don’t want to. Of course, it’s a day you need to be on your guard and tread carefully with everything you say.

How does it work? Well, as the name suggests, everything you say means the opposite. If you say yes, it really means no. If you say up, it actually means down. These rules only apply on Opposite Day which, in 2021, is January 25. Naturally, if you’re not into such childish antics, the rules don’t apply at all. However, if you’re not a stick in the mud and don’t mind having a bit of fun now and again, partaking in this annual tradition can make for an interesting day.

How to Have Fun on Opposites Day

The easiest way to take part is to obey the rules and do or say the opposite. So, if someone asks you to walk to the left, you go right. If you ask someone to sit down, know that you’re really telling them to stand. If you want to turn Opposites Day into more of a challenge, you can create a game.

The rules are simple: you say something and your opponent has to say an antonym (aka an opposite). For example, if I say “common”, you’d say “rare”. Naturally, there will often be more than one antonym, so don’t fish for a single answer. However, the aim is to keep batting words and antonyms back and forth until someone makes a mistake.

To help get you started, here are some simple words and their antonyms:

  • Agree/Disagree
  • Honest/Dishonest
  • Plausible/Implausible
  • Discreet/Indiscreet
  • Sense/Nonsense

As you can see, it’s a fairly easy game to play. But if you really want to turn up the heat and go for glory, you can throw in some tricky words and phrases, like these:

  • Oblique/Straightforward
  • Vivacious/Boring
  • Equivocal/Certain
  • Fallacious/Truthful
  • Cantankerous/Pleasant

There are plenty more opposites out there. In fact, every word or phrase will have an antonym. Your job is to be as tricky as possible. For more fun, you can split up the game into rounds and categories. You could also make up your own opposites. For example, you might decide to name footballers and set up a best vs. worst scenario.

So, Pele would be the opposite of Andy Cole. Maybe that’s a bit harsh on Andy Cole, but you get the idea. These types of opposites will be subjective and controversial but that’s all part of the fun. If you can successfully argue that X is demonstrably much better than Y, you could call them opposites and get a point. Indeed, that’s what Opposites Day is really all about: having fun!

One thing that’s not up for debate is the quality of Buzz Bingo. Even on Opposites Day, our games are great and we won’t have it any other way!

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