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Thursday
Nov062014

SF, Ep. 56

November 6, 2014 — LDM headed back to the Contemporary Jewish Museum for our annual November pilgrimage (to team up with Reboot’s Unscrolled) for a literary-skewed night of laughter and unusual Torah commentary that ended with Gabe Delahaye outdueling Karen Leibowitz in an electric Literary Judaic Charades finale to win Delahaye the LDM SF, Ep. 56 crown. 

But before the finale was even a thought, the blazing night kicked off with Delahaye, writer and comedian featured on Videogum, This American Life and Funny or Die, who imagined G-d as a fussy roommate with a chore wheel. Next up was Joel Stein, writer of fourteen cover stories for TIME and a contributor to The New Yorker and GQ, who delivered a hilarious re-telling of one of Moses' great victories through the eyes of his wife. 

The mic was then handed to the trio of all-star judges: Oscar Villalon, writer/critic, managing editor at ZYZZYVA, former S.F. Chronicle book editor; Rebecca Bortman, one-half of the punk duo Happy Fangs; and Rabbi David Kasher, ordained in 2007, attended rabbinical school at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah. The trio wowed and titillated with off-the-wall commentary before huddling up and then announcing the night's first impossible decision, declaring Delahaye as the night's first finalist. 

Then came Round 2, starring Karen Leibowitz, food writer and the co-author of Mission Street Food and Atelier Crenn, who performed with culinary accoutrements and a deadly adorable stuffed animal lamb, all in the service of delivering a recipe for a sacrificial guilt offering. Finally it was Davy Rothbartcreator of Found, author of My Heart Is An Idiot and The Lone Surfer of Montana, Kansas, who delivered an essay about being on the road promoting a book and the oddity of appearing on morning news shows.

The mic was again handed to the judges, who were endlessly impressed with both writers, applauding their general brilliance, before making the night's second impossible choice and deciding it would be Leibowitz who would advance as the night's second finalist. 

Then up stepped LDM creator Adrian Todd Zuniga, who announced the night's finale: Literary Judaic Charades. With a quartet of "actors" on the stage, Zuniga delivered titles of famous books written by Jewish Americans that the actors had to play out while Delahaye and Leibowitz guessed the titles. After Delahaye rocketed to an early lead, Leibowitz stormed back. Then, with everything to play for it was Delahaye who shouted out "The Executioner's Song?" first, winning him the Literary Death Match SF, Ep. 56 crown and literary immortality to go with it. 

Follow us on Twitter: @litdeathmatch

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