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Twin Cities, Ep. 10

November 20, 2013 — To celebrate our 10th-ever Twin Cities episode Literary Death Match teamed with some of the region's lit-finest (Paper Darts, Revolver & The Tangential) at St. Paul's Amsterdam Bar & Hall to witness Team Neil Hilborn outduel Team Andy Sturdevant by a closer-than-it-appears final score of 55-30 to win Hilborn the LDM Twin Cities, Ep. 10 crown.

But before the finale was even a consideration, the night kicked off with Sturdevantwho read from the opening of his new book:  Potluck Supper with Meeting to Followwhich featured a hilarious exchange between himself and the publicist for Buffalo Wild Wings. Next up was Jacquie Fuller (MPR's The Current DJ and host of the Teenage Kicks program) who first electrified the audience by putting on a "Sturdevant beard" before reeling off a rousing story published in Paper Darts with the help of a friend shouting "Andy!" 

The mic was then handed over to the trio of all-star judges: Kathryn Kyser, poet and author of Dark Lake and Pretend the World; comedian/lead singer of The Dirty CurlsCourtney McLean; and Bill Corbett, MST3K writer, Rifftrax creator and voice of Crow T. Robot. The trio reeled off an array of incisive and titter-inducing commentary before making the night's first impossible decision, naming Sturdevant as the night's first finalist. 

After a boozy intermission, Round 2 kicked off with slam poet Neil Hilborn who performed his viral sensation "OCD" along with a stirring poem about his bipolar disorder. Finally, it was two-time National Poetry Slam champion Kyle “Guante” Tran Myhre (founder of MN Activist Project) who did a moving and magical breakdown of the Twin Cities arts scene and its relationship to whiteness. 

Again the judges were center stage, and overcoming their speechlessness because of the power of both performers, decided they would advance Hilborn to the finals, as he admitted he'd never beaten Guante before in his life. 

Then host and LDM creator Adrian Todd Zuniga took center stage, announcing the Lone Star Lit finale, in which he read off 1-star Amazon book reviews written about the 100 Best Books of All-Time. The finalists (teamed with a mix of volunteers from the crowd) took turns nailing book after book, but with everything to play for Team Hilborn nailed the final answer, and Hilborn was crowned champ, winning the Twin Cities, Ep. 10 medal, and literary immortality to go with it.  

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