IF YOU EVER DOUBTED THAT IT'S A SMALL WORLD AFTER ALL, a parlor game called Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon is bound to convince you. The game, based on the premise of John Guare's 1990 play Six Degrees of Separation—that everyone in the world is no more than six acquaintances removed from anyone else (x knows y, who knows z, etc.)—has swept college campuses and the Internet, spawning at least five Web pages. To play SDKB, you must connect Bacon (star of 1984's Footloose and 1995's Apollo 13) through costarring roles to a given Hollywood actor. Take Elvis: The King starred in 1969's Change of Habit with Ed Asner, and Asner was in JFK with Bacon—for a score of 2 (the lowest number wins).
The game was invented in 1993 by Craig Fass, Mike Ginelli and Brian Turtle, fraternity brothers at Albright College in Reading, Pa. "Mike and I were just hanging out one night, bored during a snowstorm," says Fass, 22 (now a chef). "Brian's good at movie trivia, so we mentioned it to him at a party. Somebody overheard us, and it kind of snowballed." Ginelli, 23, is now a student at the Quinnipiac Law School in Hamden, Conn., and Turtle, 22, is working as a technical recruiter.
The trio appeared last year with Bacon himself on The Jon Stewart Show. "I don't think he took to us very kindly," says Fass, but Bacon told the Philadelphia Inquirer that he was flattered by the game. "At first I thought it was a joke at my expense," Bacon said. "But that's probably an actor's insecurity."