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NYC, Ep. 7

May 29, 2008—The first-ever Literary Death Match in the Round (NYC Ep. 7) was a success of monumental proportions, as Aaron Garretson (representing Opium) out-hooped Bob Powers (Lost Magazine) by draining 3-of-4 shots in “Recycling Basketball” to bring home the LDM crown in front of a massive Housing Works Bookstore Cafe crowd. 

The night--sponsored by, doubled as the launch of Opium6: Go Green! (But Save Me First)--kicked off with Garretson leading the charge with a chuckle-worthy tale that kept the audience in his grip, and ended with Smith Magazine representative Cole Kazdin who shined bright as she unraveled a nude-based yarn. The judges--Ben Greenman of the New Yorker, comedian Joel Dovev and the first-ever mute judges in LDM history, The Bumby’s--struggled to select a winner, but in the end chose Garretson for his “perfect Disney/Pixar voice.”

After a short intermission, the event reconvened, and Garth Hallberg (Canteen Magazine) dazzled--oohs were mixed with ahhs--with his stunning piece, The Filibuster. He was followed by Powers, who read from his shiny new book, You are a Miserable Excuse for a Hero. He used his choose-your-own-adventure book to involve the raucous crowd. While Gill Bumby felt Hallberg could “command a room without saying a word,” in the end the judges sided with Powers, who was said to look “like Dan Aykroyd’s goofy half-son nephew.”

Next came the epic finale, in which Powers was asked, “Basketball or hockey?” Once he said hockey, he was instantly forced to wear an autographed Jason Spezza Ottawa Senators jersey, while Garretson was given a Michael Jordan Bulls top. The two combatants were then asked to make shots from three different spots inside Housing Works. Both made their first, missed their second, and drained their third. The final shot--an empty Naked bottle to be heaved from the balcony--provided a surprising lack of drama as Garretson’s long, arcing bomb found nothing but the bottom of the trash can. Powers also drained his shot from distance, but it was too late. A thrilling end to a fantastic night, indeed.

Don’t believe that’s how it all went down? Check out the New Yorker blog for confirmation!

See all the photos from this event here!

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