April 28, 2011 — O, Miami indeed! Hilarity reigned at LDM's first-ever Miami episode, where our literary gladiators faced the rowdiest crowd in LDM history, and triumphed! Literature 1, Ladies' Night, 0. And the ultimate victors: Hialeah Haiku's Nodarse and Santayana!
The first round opened with the fearsome twosome tag-team of Hialeah Haiku's Nodarse and Santayana (Foryoucansee Collective), busting out bilingual verse to the cheers of the hometown crowd. The gallant Matt Gajewski (representing the must-listen-to Pure Imagination) came off the bench ready for battle, however - complete with headband, short shorts, knee high sweat socks and eye black. Gajewski's story of an identity-bending man sometimes named Stan impressed the judges: New Yorker editor and author of Celebrity Chekhov, Ben Greenman and Patricia Engel (author of Vida), but ultimately the HH poets pulled out the victory to advance to the finals.
It was late in the evening when the second round began, pitting Mary Sheffield (Zombies Organize) against Dave Landsberger (representing Jai-Alai Magazine). Sheffield bobbed and weaved like a power forward, driving home her story of an obsessive dieter whose intestinal integrity was less important than the thinning of her thighs. After briefly dressing down the increasingly unruly and lubricated crowd, host Ann Heatherington turned the mic over to Landsberger, who took on the rabble-rousers with his first piece, appropriate titled, "Kick Ass." Performance Judge and Broken Social Scene's guitarist/ songwriter Andrew Whiteman (Apostle of Hustle) gave extra props to both writers for their unflinching delivery, but after heated debate, Landsberger emerged the winner.
For the ultimate showdown, the readers competed in a madcap game of Juego de la Sillas (aka Musakal Chairs). The finalists shimmied shoulders and shook bootys to the song stylings of Miami's finest (2 Live Crew, Pitbull, Gloria Estefan and Enrique Iglesias). In the dramatic-est finish ever, the last member of Team Landsberger went careening to the carpet like a toppled Lucha de Libre wrestler, leaving Team Nodarse/Santayana the last ones standing - or rather, sitting. Amazing!