Sunday, November 29, 2009

Speakeasy Holiday Toast-Off: The Rules

It has rules?

Anybody who remembers the last one might forgiven for thinking not. Despite the rampant heckling, the drunken blasphemy and the general chaos, we're doing it again. The next Speakeasy Toast-Off will throw down at Will's Pub on Tuesday, Dec. 8 at 10 p.m. Interested in competing? Curious about boring minutae? Here's what you need to know. The rules that follow, with a few house exceptions, are the brainchild of competitive toasting's founder (as far as we know), Christian Drake:

GRAND PRIZE: Ornate beer stein, a $20 gift certificate to Total Wine, and goodies from behind the bar at dear old Will's Pub. The top two competitors will have their bar tab taken care of for the duration of the match. There's your hook.

- Sign-ups begin at 7 p.m. - see the bald guy sitting behind the Poetry Vending Machine table at the Arte Faire, taking place prior to the Toast-Off from 6-9 p.m. We'll take first come, first served up to a max of 8 competitors. Format will be head-to-head elimination.

- Rounds will consist of three toasts on a random subject drawn from a hat. The first toaster in each round (selected at random) will have 40 seconds to come up with a toast. After he/she has delivered the toast, his opponent has an additional 20 seconds to come up with his/her own. Competitors must take a healthy swig at the end of each toast (both theirs AND their opponent's). Winner is decided by majority rule of a panel of celebrity judges; best 2 out of 3. Final round will be best 3 out of 5. The winner must finish his/her beer by the end of each round.

- Toasts must be traditional, which is to say they should begin with "May ..." or "Here's to ..." There is no time limit on the duration of toasts, but trust us on this: Brevity will work in your favor.

- No, really. Not kidding on that last one.

Anyone interested in signing up early can comment on this post - I'll save you a spot provided you show up at the venue before 9 pm. Start stocking up on hangover remedies now, true believers. See you there.

Monday, November 16, 2009

All ye faithful

Saddle up! We're back in regular weekly rotation at Will's Pub, every Tuesday at 9 pm. Nov. 17 oughta be a special one: Plenty of new poems, and your first advance news about a couple worthy December events ...

- The Artists & Writers Crawl on Dec. 12. The regular artist crawls have been popularized (to your host, anyway) by Analog Artist Digital World sketcher and all-around class act Thomas Thorspecken, and this latest edition invites the writers to come along and get their muse on. To better accommodate the Speakeasy crowd, this crawl will be a bar-hop through the better dive bars of the ViMi district, including a stop at Will's. Best of all, the whole shebang is free and open to all! Get your details as they emerge at the website.

- A holiday edition of the Speakeasy Toast-Off. If you thought the regular open mike was nothing but a glorified excuse for drinking, you ain't seen shit. Competitive toasting returns to the stage of Will's on Dec. 8 with new celebrity judges and fab prizes TBA.

Monday, November 9, 2009

The calm before the brainstorm

Late update, but no - no Speakeasy this week. That's right, we're taking a break (again) on Nov. 10. Yes, I know. Yes, I feel that way too. Whoa! Put down the claw hammer. Tell you what; what if I said we were scheduled every week after that straight through the holidays? Cool, right? How about if I said we have the second Speakeasy Toast-Off with fabulous prizes and celebrity judges scheduled for Dec. 15, right after the monthly Arte Faire? How's that for some sugar?

OK then. Glad we could all walk away from this without violence. See you next week!