January 30, 2010—Blizzard-like conditions in Charm City didn't stall Baltimore's epic Literary Death Match debut, as hardcore lit enthusiasts slipped-and-slid into the excellent Windup Space for a Mob City clash that featured Publishing Genius' Mike Young outscribbling Barrelhouse's Dave Housley in a Sharpie-fueled Draw the Judges in 20-Seconds or Less™ throwdown, and made Young the latest LDM champion.
But before the finale was even a thought, the night kicked off with Housley stepping up and reading an insect-fueled story (that also included the mention of a newt) followed by CityLit's Michael M. Hughes who read a tale of jizz-puddle slippage and beyond.
The judges — Dear Everybody author Michael Kimball, The Wire scribe Rafael Alvarez and fill-in first-round judge Carolyn Zaikowski— had the tough task of deciding between the pair, but finally, narrowly deciding on Housley.
After a booze-fueled intermission, JMWW's Jen Michalski led off against Young with a house-quieting story about things, an unanswered riddle that made her an immediate favorite for the finals. Then up-stepped Young, who recited his piece from memory, aided by two childhood friends: a Spock figurine and a one-legged Captain Kirk.
The judges again took turns reeling off barbs, only this time, Zaikowski (a close associate of Young) was replaced by educator extraordinaire Tita Chico. With the second finalist on the line, the tough choice was tougher than most, and the judges ended up "throwing fingers" (say what?) to decide who advanced, and Young was chosen.
Then came the finale, in which Young and Housley were each tasked with drawing Kimball, Alvarez and Zaikowski/Chico, with a 20-second time limit on each, and all were judged by three volunteers. First, Young won a very close round, his man-in-a-train beating out the Kimball portrait. Then Young swept his way to victory with an Alvarez-as-a-mouse outwitting Housley's Alvarez-as-a-well-drawn-hippie. Young was crowned victor, and literary immortality was his.