Drinking Game – “Biz”

My informant learned the drinking game, “Biz,” from her friend in high school.  She and her friends would religiously play this game before they went out to parties.  She has implemented this drinking game into her college life as well.  Her audience, a group of college students that were planning on attending a party, but had spare time to kill before they wanted to leave.  They had two goals, to drink and have fun.

The main purpose of drinking games is to create a purpose for consuming alcohol.  Typically, games propose some form of challenge and the people that mess up have to drink as a punishment.  It is ironic because in most games, the punishment is to drink, when drinking is the whole point of the playing.  In “Biz,” everyone must start sitting in a circle.  The minimum number of players you can have is three.  The more people you have participating, the easier (and less fun) the game is.  Starting at zero and continuing in numerical order, each person must say a number.  Each time a person is supposed to say a number that includes seven or is a multiple of seven, that person must replace that number by screaming “biz.”  Every time someone says “biz” the order of people in which numbers are said switches (clockwise to counter-clockwise or vice-versa).  When it is a persons turn, they must not say the wrong number, forget to say “biz” if appropriate, take too long, or drastically mess up the rhythm.  If they do, they must take a long sip of their drink.  After they drink, they have to start back at zero.  The game creates a vicious cycle because the more you drink, the more you mess up, and the more you mess up, the more you must drink.

Sumner remembers this game because she loves to play it, and enjoys teaching it to new groups of people.  It is a great source of entertainment, and for most, a very fun way to get intoxicated.

Additionally, there are many different versions of general drinking games.  I have heard of different variations of this game, where people will say different words or use different numbers.

This item is an example of modern folklore that has been developed relatively recently by today’s generation and is most common at high school and college campuses throughout America.  Drinking games have become very prominent since drinking among teenagers and college students has become more accepted and common. They demonstrate how different kinds of folklore cater to different cultures and lifestyles.