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Nose goes or the nose game is a popular selection method most commonly used when deciding which of several persons is assigned an unwanted task. Also uncommonly referred to the rule book of nose goes. The rule book contains three key principles: 1. Who ever puts their hand on their nose last, loses. 2. It can only be called once per task. 3. It is only to be called while with a group of friends (3 or more) or in a public place. This method is commonly used to select who is "it" in tag or the seeker in hide-and-seek.
One member of a group notices that something (usually a small or simple errand or task) needs to be done. They mention it and then call the name of the game, placing their index finger on the tip of their nose. As the other members of the group acknowledge the task, they also place their index fingers on the tips of their noses. The last person to do this is the person who has to perform the task. Toes may count if one's hands are unavailable at time of "nose goes." In many versions of the game, the starting player must shout "No nose goes", "Not it", or "Nose goes!" to begin the game, however, in other versions no announcement is necessary, and simply the last person to notice the game has to perform the task.
Nose goes is silently initiated by an individual of an unwanted task or bill. Last person to realize nose goes has begun and places their finger on their nose is stuck with the task or bill.
Another nose game arose in 2006, though only vaguely related to the original. In this version, each player must hold his or her thumb to his or her nose. The last player to remove their thumb is declared the winner. Thumbs may be exchanged during play as long as at least one thumb remains on each player's nose.
In some American versions of the nose game, there is an additional feature to promote fair competition. The initiator of the nose game must loudly and clearly count from 1 to 3. This allows the other participants to prepare themselves for the game. If a participant makes a significant movement of his hand towards his nose before the counting is complete, he is disqualified and forfeits the game.
A slightly different version of this game is frequented in the Netherlands, mostly in student circles. The basics are the same, except instead of touching your nose, you have to make a 'roof' (Dutch; 'dakje') above your head by placing the tips of your fingers together and making an upside-down V ('/\'). The game is mostly started out by one person that acknowledges something needs to be done, and shouts out 'without X' ('zonder X') where X stands for the thing that needs to be done. This way the person making the roof claims to go without doing X, and so the last person to make the roof is the one that has to perform the task.
Similarly to the version in the Netherlands, NW Ohio version has participants first make the traditional signal - index finger to nose - but then put their finger tips together above their heads in the roof motion, declaring "TREE" when in position. The last to perform both moves is then 'it.'
Another variation states that players of "the game" must drop to one knee. The last person standing will be the one who must do the task at hand. It is known in western Canada as "Dibs out, knee down". It was developed as a way to keep friends from bickering about who said "dibs out" first. By having players drop to one knee, it is easy to see who the last man standing is.
"Tebow's nose" is version played by touching the nose, bowing the head, and bending down on one knee – similar to a pose made popular by American football player Tim Tebow. This version of the nose game originated in Colorado around the time Tebow played for the Denver Broncos.
In case of tie, there is one way to determine the winner. When both (or in some cases all) participants find themselves in a dead tie, the tie is then broken by these simple steps. Maintain the position of your finger on your nose, and bend down on one knee while giving yourself the "bunny ears." The first to do this, breaks the tie and wins the conflict.
Sometimes, the losing player is allowed to say "reload", in which case, all members must touch their foot with the nose hand and touch their nose again and the last person back is the actual loser. This method can also be used to break ties.
In popular culture
The nose game is featured in the 1979 movie Meatballs to determine which person would stack the dishes at the end of a camp meal.
"Not it" is also featured in a 1998 episode of " That '70s Show" (season 1, episode 3) “Streaking” , to decide who is going to wear the Nixon mask for the streaking.
"Nose dibs" is featured in a 2005 episode of " How I Met Your Mother" to determine which person would clean up Ted's vomit after they peer pressured him into doing five shots.
The nose game is featured in a 2008 episode of House M.D. to determine which person would take a painful injection to test for a disease.
“Nose-Goes” is an application for the iPod/iPhone featured on the iTunes app store.
The nose game appears in an episode of American Dad! (Season 2, Episode 15) “Four Little Words” at a CIA conference to determine who has to find their boss a woman.
The nose game appears on a 2010 episode of Community, “Aerodynamics of Gender” (Season 2, Episode 7) to decide who would take care of Pierce to make sure he did not overdose. The game appears again in Season 3's “Remedial Chaos Theory” as a recurring event.
The nose game has been extensively used in the Fox comedy series Raising Hope, usually when concerning who has to give MawMaw a bath.
"Nose Goes" is shown to be a part of a ritual among the Watermelon Stevens in Steven Universe in the episode "Super Watermelon Island" to determine which of the Watermelon Stevens to sacrifice to Malachite.