As with any tournament, the excitement of plentiful opening round
match-ups and endless possibilities must, at some point, give way to
the reality that is, there must ultimately be a winner. As sobering as
this thought is on its own, it is also accompanied by the harsh reality
that each halving round brings a greater and greater disappointment -
for to be out early is to not know being just one or two steps from a
championship. The Broo Deathmatch has finally been whittled down to
four writers whose personalities are at least as
prolific as their writing - or in the tournament parlance - all chalk.
I'm left with the less-than-enviable task, here, of getting that four
down to two - to simplify our tournament of writer death matches down
to just one death match. I have to populate the Broo Thunderdome.
But like the rounds before, I will greet this impossible task with improbable logic and complete disregard for the lofty ideals of fairness, equality and objective judgment. For as this year's gatekeeper (note the subtle suggestion that next year some other wide-eyed young rookie will take on this task) it is incumbent on me to be capricious, foolhardy and an easy target for ridicule and criticism. Luckily for you all, I was there long before I even wrote a word of this. Of course, I am permitted these transgressions only so long as I remain funny... a condition which I likely have already breached in my lengthy introduction.
So with that, I bring you the results of the Broo Final Four - as we take it down to two, and set the Broo Brackets Championship matchup:
Ed Attanasio vs. El G.
I have to say, although I filled the brackets methodically, and decided each round (mostly) independently, this is really sort of a dream match up. Where do you begin with these two? After recently being featured by DigiDave, I'm not sure there's much I need to say by way of introduction for Ed., and if, after I've mentioned it in each round so far, you haven't yet gone to read El G's amazingly entertaining Broo profile - that's really more your fault than mine. Of course, I had to run a "Google Battle" at http://www.googlebattle.com/index.php?domain=El+G&domain2=Ed+Attanasio&submit=Go%21 where El G came out ridiculously ahead... but when I ran it as "El G" vs "Ed A" (normalizing for name length/abbreviations) it came out quite differently: http://www.googlebattle.com/index.php?domain=El+G&domain2=Ed+A&submit=Go%21
So, great, the Google Battle is a push. I knew this wasn't going to be easy. Amongst his widely varied Broo topics, Ed has predicted the end of the world, whereas El G hasn't even predicted the end of disco (shh, nobody tell him, it will be much funnier when he shows up at the summer Broo party in polyester). But Ed is probably the only author that could do this without earning our strong and persistent ridicule (just ask Rose Mountain). El G, however, is an author who refuses to defined by traditional techniques, right down to his profile picture - which he changes more often (embarrassingly enough) than I change underwear or Jen & Tonic changes descriptions of her breasts. He literally embodies contradiction and conflict, and yet does it so artfully that we often embrace him more readily than the authors themselves. Who amongst us can't recall a Broo article that we liked solely based on El G's comment string? El G has lived in Fresno, Turlock, Stockton, Bakersfield and Barstow - a more interesting string of places than even Morgana... It looks like Ed's lived in, well, San Francisco. If it's even possible, this little exercise has caused me to read even more articles by these two than I have already (and as the statistics tell it, the rest of you have been reading, too), and I can say, without a doubt, that Ed A is the class of Broo. But, Ed's also a Lakers fan. Come on, Ed... that selection is the antithesis of class. So, where to hang my hat on this one?! Trying to parse between the quality of these two writers is an exercise in futility - and while I'm well practiced in the art (mostly as a result of being terminally single in this town), I still can't make it work here. This is about a fight. By any traditional measure, Ed is media force, and a supremely talented writer ... with the web presence, CV and credits to match. El G, by his own admission, plays by his own rules - and I certainly can't disagree with him, or the effectiveness of his technique. To be fair, I'm about as counter-culture as Alex P. Keaton, but there's just something about this choice that rings true to me. When you can take all that we preconceive about what is ok to say, and what is not, turn it on its ear and then make us like what would from any other author be a terrifying ride, you've got something. El G may never write copy for another famous artist to say, but I think that's just the way he likes it. Southwest Pacoima's own, El G, takes down Goliath, and takes the first spot in this year's Broo Deathmatch Writers' Final.
Jen & Tonic vs. Bill Friday
Just as the authors in the first match up needed to do little to shore up their reputations, these two authors took the challenge of their relative anonymity quite seriously - and have produced some of the best comments I've read on Broo to-date. I'm just happy that my little exercise could inspire such fantastic creativity (I, of course, take all the credit ... and filed for copyright registration a week ago). Bill is writing at a pace we haven't seen from him since he started at Broo (eight articles in March!) and is paying more attention to me (via his blog and comments) than the last three girls I've dated combined. J&T recently took a break from her commenting hysteria to bring her everyman humor to the world of guilty informercial purchasing - and allowed many of us to finally come out of our proverbial closets, Magic Bullets in hand. It's been more than fun - it's been the stuff that Broo is all about. J&T is the queen of Broo - a mostly benevolent monarch with a snarky wit that can really, really wish you didn't park your e-mail infomercial on her otherwise pristine and intellectual, preferential posting site. Bill Friday is the quintessential "Great American Male" writer - who captures the quick confidence of the type of men our dads hoped we'd be with an inviting curiosity that makes you read to learn as well as be entertained. Of course, these roses don't come without their thorns... If J&T was any more self-deprecating, I'd put her on a suicide watch. I mean, honestly, it's disarming to a point where I'm worried about disarming her. Nothing sharp in the house, right, Jen? And here's a girl whose MySpace "Top Friends" includes a gent who refers to himself as "came in his pants"... lovely. And if Bill's blog looked any more Spartan it would kick it's own loinclothed ass into a pit. But in the immortal words of Triumph the Insult Comic Dog: I keed, I keed. One more thing, before anyone writes another word about it, let me just say, if you don't think J&T belongs this far along in the tourney, you haven't read her stuff and I don't care anyways... if you haven't heard, she's got more hits on one article than the rest of us (except maybe Ed) have on all of ours... and that's not an accident. Besides, you don't need to pick on Jen, she's got that covered in spades. But Bill's got a 15,000+ hit piece of his own and has covered everything from his own ignominious Broo beginnings to a shamefully well-advised article on the odds of this year's American Idol contestants to win. Bill is, quite simply, built for competition: he's identified all of his internet dopplegangers and knows his current opponent well enough to name her in his own profile. Bill's not the kind of guy who needs to identify how stupid anyone else is to look smart - he's gained what he knows from a life experience that makes Hemingway look like a housewife. This really comes down to a scene from an investing commercial where the older guy jogging at a steady pace on the beach gets initially passed by a sprinting young lad, only to later pass him up with "his disciplined investing approach." Actually, on second thought, it's got not a damned thing to do with that at all. Google Battle (http://googlebattle.com/index.php?domain=Jen+%26+Tonic&domain2=Bill+Friday&submit=Go%21) notwithstanding - the Tonic train ends here at the Final Four. Bill Friday is off to the Championship Game.
Okay people, we're down to two... a Broo Championship for the ages: El G and Bill Friday. This is it folks, the big one; for all the marbles, the big Kahuna... etc., etc. I hope you continue to enjoy this crazy little experiment - right down the last drop. As ever, I'm looking forward to seeing and hearing just what you've got to say - and predictions for the ultimate champ. As many others have said, the comments have far eclipsed the quality of these pieces themselves, and I'm humbled before you - so keep up the good work...
The updated brackets are still available here:
Where you can even now make predictions and print it out if you like (although none of you have)...
The results of the Championship will be revealed in my apartment on Monday night, and submitted to Broo shortly thereafter - which means that party attendees and the two girls in the bushes outside (Rose Mountain and J&T) will know before everyone else... how's that for a shameless plug?
Have fun with this Championship matchup... And REMEMBER, play nicely, people - In the end, like a dog without a bone, and actors out alone, we're all just writers on a storm.