Let's Go With She, Her & Hers

A quick note on grammar (more for myself than anything). Defaulting to a "gender neutral" he/him/his doesn't really cut it these days, especially when writing about an art form with a pretty serious gender imbalance on stage. But in the effort describe the actions and roles of multiple players in more genuinely neutral terms, the language can get snarled pretty quickly. 

In the game Helping Hands, if I say "one player tucks their arms behind their back while a second player stands behind and sticks their arms through giving the first player a new set of hands," there's instantly some ambiguity, clunkiness and extra verbage that makes me crazy. 

So instead I'm choosing to solve the problem by making she/her/hers the default gender in all of the game descriptions on Improv Help Desk.

A game like Zombie Names reads, "one player crosses the circle as a Zombie headed toward a victim. The victim desperately makes eye contact with someone else around the circle whose job it is to save her by calling a new name."

And if a second player needs a gender pronoun for clarity, I'll use he/him/his. Which means that the Helping Hands description above now reads, "one player tucks her arms behind her back while a second player stands behind and sticks his arms through giving her a new set of hands."

In the words of the Notorious R.B.G.:

People ask me sometimes, when – when do you think it will it be enough? When will there be enough women on the [Supreme] court? And my answer is when there are nine.