This is a game you can play at nearly any mall, anywhere.

The object of the game: To enter and exit a Gap Inc. storefront without being accosted by sales personnel.

To play you need

1) Yourself and several friends.
2) A Gap Inc. storefront


The play of the game:

The players gather at a suitable vantage point from which to survey the storefront and the play of the game. By sight they agree upon the location in the store that is most distant from the entrance, or designate a specific object or item in the store as the "target".

A player goes into the Gap and attempts to reach the location or target *and* make the return trip without being spoken to or addressed by *any* Gap employee. A player loses if he or she reaches the target but doesn't successfully exit. A successful play earns the player one point.

Repeat until all have played and tally the points. You can play several rounds, or employ any one of several variants.


In order to win the game, a player is allowed, but is not limited to:

1) Walking about casually, appearing interested in items here and there -- but making slow progress to the target
2) Walking quickly in and out with a minimum of pretense.
3) Running.
4) Hiding in the clothing racks.

However, a player may not

1) Hide in the dressing room or bathroom.
2) Use firearms.

Other restrictions are to be predetermined by the players before the beginning of each round. The players may decide to add or remove restrictions between rounds.


Variants

Team Play: Players divide into team and play several rounds. The team with the most collective wins at the end of the rounds is the winner.

Tag Team: Players are divided into teams of two. The players on each team play simultaneously and the pair must make their entrances and exits within 10 seconds of one another. If both players reach the target and the exit successfully in the allotted time frame, then the team is awarded three points. If only one of them is successful, the team is awarded only one point. In this variant, one player can "sacrifice" himself for his partner, should it appear that the double-win is not feasible: "Oh, miss, could you come here and tell me about these swell cargo pants?"

Covert Ops: All players wear Khaki's and white tee's. The players *must* attempt to blend in, appear interested in the products, look "at home". Special bonus points may be awarded for a particulalry convincing play.

Endurance: For advanced gamers. Players receive points for the length of time spent in the storefront.

Inverse game: Players must attempt to get an employee's home phone number -- *without purchasing anything*. Bonus points awarded for obtaining the number of an employee who's gender opposes the players normal sexual preference. Style points awarded for asking the employee out on a date while in the store.

|A variation on the Gap Game

Here is a variation on the Gap Game that is even more fun than the original Gap Game. It's quite simple.

Object of the game:
To assist as many customers as possible

Rules:

2) The players must each locate customers and offer their assistance, pretending to be Gap employees.
3) The players must remain in the store and play for a predetermined amount of time.
4) The players must still try to avoid gap personnel as this will affect the scoring.

Scoring:
Each player will give him/herself one point for every assisted customer. For each instance of contact with a Gap employee players will take two points off their score. The player with the largest score wins.
A similar, but subtley different game to this can be played in the busy shopping area of Grafton Street in Dublin, Ireland. Typically, along the 5-minute narrow walk there are more than 20 charity workers interspersed amongst the high density of shoppers.

Their sole aim is to recruit you: convince you to sign a standing order for £x a month to their charity. There are at least four different charities (eg. Concern, Gorta, ISPCA, Sight Savers). The workers are paid professionals and after weeks standing on the street, know exactly how to pick the people with guilty consciences. A weak-willed friend of mine hands over £20/month to several charities, and can't be bothered writing the letters to his bank telling them to cancel them. Besides, they have his address...

Anyway, that's the background: the point of the game is to negotiate your way down the street without being accosted or even so much as glanced at by any of the workers. This is a lot harder than it seems... they have an eye for people who are trying to avoid them, they strategically place themselves in different formations to catch people on any part of the street, and lately they've taken to wearing plainclothes, which means the only way to identify them is by the half-concealed clipboards they hold against their chests.

I've never successfully managed to complete the game yet... which is incredible given the amount of people on the pedestrianised street. But I've gone from lasting around 10 seconds to being able to hold a nonchalent attitude for 2 minutes or more.

As an employee of GAP, Inc, I must say that we deal with people who entertain themselves with the GAP game quite often. As a member of the stock team, I don't see the participants in the game very often, but when we do, it is open season for all employees.

We actually have a game for people who play The Gap Game, called Let's Dominate The Fucking Customer Game. Once we have established that the members of the game (usually pre-pubescent to middle twenties traveling in large groups not looking for merchandise), we will do everything we can to make sure they are accosted as many times as possible.

This garners much humor for our managers, who coordinate attack plans using their headsets to communicate with the field agents. We are informed of target's coordinates, target's expected coordinates, and target's velocity. Almost immediately upon declaration that we are now in Gap Game mode, we station a sales associate at the front entrance, effectively sealing the victims in. We then will block off the fitting rooms and the bathroom, keeping the targets confined within the main store area. The managers will then position us accordingly to make sure they will not leave their current section without being serviced. The looks of the players faces as they realize that are to be serviced is priceless. From here, every time they move, we will send another associate to check on them, offer them a GapCard, or a style that we think would look good on them. At this juncture, we usually offer them the garbage that no one else wants, like the seersuckers for example. The flustered look makes it well worth the price of admission.

The greatest satisfaction comes however from servicing the customers when they aren't expecting it AT ALL. We will in dire straights sometimes, call out the reserves from the stock room, or in a real emergency, call over people from the Gap Kids store across the hall. Just when they think that they are getting out free, we unleash the hounds on them, and watch their hopes of winning go down the tube.

When you attempt to infiltrate GAP Store 2915 without detection, you will be destroyed. Be gone GAP gamers, before I smite thee.

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