Like any decent country, Japan has an array of weird drinking games. Most of them have absurdly complicated rules and rely on the drunkest/stupidest person making a mistake, and then having to down their drink as a forfeit. When someone in Japan has to neck a glass of booze, their tormentors chant “iki iki iki!” (Be careful not to say “iku iku iku!” which is what people gasp during sex, fact fans.)
One such game is “Ping Pong Pang,” (or “Ping Pang Pong,” depending on who you ask. Which of the two names is the “real” one has led to many a heated debate in bars across Japan.) It’s a fast-paced and confusing game, and the rules are thus: When someone begins the game by saying “Ping,” the person to their left must quickly say “Pong,” and the next person in line must then say “Pang” whilst simultaneously pointing at someone else at the table who has to immediately say “Ping,” which starts the whole process again.
As you can imagine, there are plenty of opportunities to screw up. If you hesitate, it’s “iki iki iki” time. If you say the wrong word: “iki iki iki”. If you point at the wrong time, or you forget to point: “iki iki iki”. Hey Presto: lots of drunk people!
There are occasional references to the game in popular culture. In fact, I’ve just discovered a cool electronic-rock group called “Ping Pong Pang”, who you can hear at this site, or read about on their official website. A fine soundtrack to any drinking game. Enjoy!