Posted by: Brad Nixon | November 24, 2010

Cap’n Braddie’s Thanksgiving Whiz-Bang!

Hey, Kids! It’s time again for Cap’n Braddie’s Whiz-Bang, and today we have some special holiday fun in store! Have you ever wondered what to do to liven up that dull time around the Thanksgiving table while everyone waits for Uncle Mac to finish chewing every bite of food a hundred times so you can get to dessert?

Cap’n Braddie has just the thing! Now, you’ll need to let a couple of brothers and sisters or cousins in on this gag, and you’re going to have to practice up a bit ahead of time, but, believe me, it will be worth it!

Read the directions below, get together in the rec room or the basement and practice. Then, when everyone sits down to dinner, MAKE SURE that at least THREE of you sit next to one another around the table. Then, when things have really slowed down, and Uncle Mac is chewing away, and it looks as if Aunt Mabel is going to start talking about her blasted Pekingese, it’ll be TIME for Cap’n Braddie’s Thanksgiving Whiz-Bang!

Here’s what you do:

Whichever one of you is the farthest to the left (we’ll call them “Person A”) should pick up a spoon, turn to the brother or sister or cousin on their right (“Person B”), look meaningfully at them and say distinctly, “This is a spoon.”

Then, Person B looks at “A” and asks, “A what?”

A says, keeping a steady rhythm going, “A spoon.”

Then person B asks again, staying with the rhythm, “A what?”

And without missing a beat, A says again, “A spoon.”

And then B says, finishing out this “round,” “Oh … a spoon!”

And A hands the spoon to B.

The whole thing should have a rhythm like:

THIS is a SPOON, a WHAT, a SPOON, a WHAT, a SPOON, a WHAT, a SPOON, (pause) OH a SPOON.

It sounds rather silly right now, but just wait for what happens next!

NEXT, person A picks up a fork and turns to Person B, saying, “This is a fork.” At THE VERY SAME TIME, Person B turns to their right, saying to Person C, “This is a spoon.”

Then B turns to “A” on their left and C turns to “B” on their left and they both say, in unison “A what?”

And A and B (who turns back to the right) say, respectively, to B and C, “A fork” and “A spoon.”

And when they recite it together, it’s like this:

THIS is a SPOON, a WHAT, a SPOON, a WHAT, a SPOON, a WHAT, a SPOON, (pause) OH a SPOON.

THIS is a FORK,   a WHAT, a FORK,    a WHAT, a FORK,    a WHAT, a FORK,    (pause) OH a FORK.

The trick, of course, is that B has to turn first to C and then back to A with each alternating line.

I’ll bet you’re already ahead of ol’ Cap’n Braddie now. Sure enough, once A and B hand the fork and spoon, respectively, to B and C, Then C turns to the person on THEIR right, saying, “This is a spoon,” while B is saying, “This is a fork” to C and A has picked up a knife and is saying to B, “This is a knife!”

Here’s an explanatory diagram.

Person A (to B) This is a spoon.
Person B (to A) A what?
Person A (to B) A spoon.
Person B (to A) A what?
Person A (to B) A spoon.
Person B (to A) Oh, a spoon!
Person A (to B) This is a fork. Person B (to C) This is a spoon.
Person B (to A) A what? Person C (to B) A what?
Person A (to B) A fork. Person B (to C) A spoon.
Person B (to A) A what? Person C (to B) A what?
Person A (to B) A fork. Person B (to C) A spoon.
Person B (to A) Oh, a fork. Person C (to B) Oh, a spoon!
Person A (to B) This is a knife. Person B (to C) This is a fork. Person C (to D) This is a spoon.
Person B (to A) A what? Person C (to B) A what? Person D (to C) A what?
Person A (to B) A knife. Person B (to C) A fork. Person C (to D) A spoon.
Person B (to A) A what? Person C (to B) A what? Person D (to C) A what?
Person A (to B) A knife. Person B (to C) A fork. Person C (to D) A spoon.
Person B (to A) Oh, a knife. Person C (to B) Oh, a fork. Person D (to C) Oh, a spoon!

The fun really begins, of course, when, ultimately, the next person in line isn’t in on the joke. Oh, boy, just wait ’til Grandma or perhaps that loser your sister Luann brought to introduce to Mom & Dad is next! Hoo boy, that bozo probably will suddenly decide that it’s time to go change the oil in his Mazda before he’s even had dessert, never to be heard from again! Don’t worry if Luann is upset at first; she’ll thank you later when she sees the police report. If all goes well, everyone will be laughing and carrying on so much that Aunt Mabel will completely forget about talking about her stinky little dog and may not even remember to sneak home any giblets for the miserable little ankle-biter.

Now, let Cap’n Braddie suggest a couple of words of caution so that Mom and Dad don’t get upset. First, stick to simple things that can be passed, like silverware and dishes, and, not Food, except maybe a roll or biscuit. Oh, boy, just imagine what might happen if A says, “This is a pie!” I know you scalliwags out there, and you’d just better be careful!

Also, you want to keep an eye on the little kids’ table while this is going on. Sometimes a room full of bigger people all chanting a mysterious game of some kind can scare those little tykes. Or, worse, you might find little cousin Billy saying, “This is grandma’s best china!.” That’s a Cap’n Braddie no-no!

Okay, now, you all have a great time at the holiday and enjoy seeing all your cousins (at least the ones you like), and, remember, if you’re playing video games, Mom knows where to find you to make you come do the dishes, but if you’re outside playing, it’s too much trouble to call you into the house, so get on out there!

Cap’n Braddie wants to thank whichever one of his siblings or cousins or parents first came up with the Whiz-Bang Spoon Thang years ago. Frankly, he’s a little foggy on attribution, but it’s great fun!

© Brad Nixon 2010, 2016



  1. Wow, this is awesome to have written instructions! Thanks Cap’n!


  2. Oh my. I am completely amazed at the whole construction of this writing piece, as well as the game instructions. I kept thinking of my early years at Aunt Stella’s in Hollywood for Thanksgiving Dinner and how this would have been fun to do.

    I am going to send this link to a few of my friends. Pretty good one Braddy!



  3. For some reason I’m thinking today’s Birthday Girl was responsible.

    Thanks for the reminder, I’ll have to re-introduce that at our house.


    • Jeanne Cadwallader says she remembers learning it at Camp Kern, and that does make me think that Mom might’ve brought it via Girl Scouts.


  4. What happens if 27 people get involved? Who would want to be Person AA?


    • And that raises the critical question: what’s the Guinness Book of World Records record?


  5. Oh boy do I love this idea! You can count on a McNeil stab (sorry) at it.


  6. Fantastic! Hope you have a great Thanksgiving. Have you tried to sell this yet?? It’s great!!!


  7. I gotta think the Peabody Orlando has a shot at the claim of “most elaborate venue” to host the “Whiz-Bang”.


  8. hey, wait, did you take this from the “uncle al’s farm” show?


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