1. The proper way to partake in a Beer Box Narrative is to have friends. 2-24 is ideal.
2. There should also be a case of beer. 24 bottles is best. It could probably be fun without an alcoholic beverage as well. Drinking, by no means, is necessary for a jamboreading, but enthusiastic participation is.
3. The original labels from your recently purchased case of beer could be removed by soaking in warm water and then spending forever scrubbing with a Brillo pad like the Writer did. Or you could just not do this.
4a. Labels should be printed and affixed to the bottles using any manner of modern day label-affixing technologies. The Writer used something called gum paper. He can’t find the link where he bought it. He’s pretty sure he went to a real-live paper store and asked a clerk. This wasn’t from his own ambition, mind you. The paper store happened to be next to the beer store.
4b. You could also make your own labels. This is strongly encouraged, especially if you share what you made with this website. We’ll have to figure out how that will work, but I s’pose we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it, eh?
5. After labels are affixed (front and back, or just back … or neither if you decide the reading of the Beer Box Narrative is unnecessary now that you have friends over who are willing to drink the beers with you, in which case that’s just as good, if not better), place beers back in box.
6. Decorate beer box in whatever way you see properly honors the occasion. Glitter, puff paint, human blood. Whatever. What the Writer did was go to an antique store, buy an old wooden beer box, and had his illustrator buddy do something amazing with it … The illustrator buddy then sold it at an art auction for lots of dollars. That seemed to work pretty well and fulfilled the “honor thy occasion” bit of this ceremony.
7. Turn music on or find instruments to make your own. Or do both. It’s really up to you, but the selections sound better when accompanied by any manner of noise. Also, the definition for “instrument” is very loose. If you hit it and it makes noise, that can count as an instrument. Musical accompaniment during any of the label readings is strongly encouraged throughout the Beer Box Narrative.
8. Sit near the Beer Box.
9. Open the Beer Box.
10. Take a beer from the Beer Box.
11. Read the label.
12. Once label is read, all shout in unison, “TO TEDDY BOONE!” or “LONG LIVE THE SHARTRAND.”
13. (optional) Smash the bottle in a place that allows you to safely smash glass bottles without risking injury to eye, limbs, or vital areas on the body as to illustrate the impermanence of artistic endeavor and the lasting nature of collective memory during a time that seems rife with great consequence and meaning.
14. Repeat steps 9 thru 13 until the Beer Box Narrative completes itself.