Potomac Tea & Knofe Society
Okay, we'll brag. The Potomac Tea & Knife Society (PTKS)
put on one heck of a Diplomacy tournament at WBC. Filling
the big shoes of the departing Jim Yerkey who had run Diplomacy
here for the past dozen years, the transition was smooth. 58
players played on 18 boards over the three-day tournament. Most
games were hotly contested and several best-country awards came
down to the results of the very last game (the only game during
the tournament to be called because of the time limit). Players
came from as far away as the West Coast and Canada (actually,
the Canadian West Coast) to participate in the event, one of
the largest Diplomacy tournaments in North America this
year. PTKS thanks all those who attended, especially those who
traveled. PTKS also thanks Don Greenwood, host of WBC itself,
and BPA, for the fantastic facilities and support.
A number of awards were given
that are not reported in the official WBC report. The Golden
Blade, a Diplomacy tradition, went to hobby veteran David Hood
for stabbing the tournament director. Hood spent two months
telling the TD he wouldn't be attending WBC. When the TD arrived
in the great hall upstairs at HVI, Hood greeted him with a hearty
Hood tempered this accomplishment by winning the Dead Meat
Award, another PTKS tradition, awarded for his stellar performance
in getting mauled by the other players. It was the first known
instance of a player winning both the vaunted Golden Blade and
the Dead Meat Awards in a single tournament.
The TD awarded a brand new award, the "Tweak" award
for outstanding twitchiness, to two hyper-nervous players, Adam
Sigal and Kyle Kalember (both WBC newcomers--we like extending
the cold dead fish of welcome). The "They Killed Kenny"
award went to Lisa Foster and Brian Lee, who were, between them,
involved in all three of the tournament's solo victories. Solos
are fairly rare in tournament play (although PTKS tournaments
tend to encourage them), and this was an unparalleled accomplishment.
The Chris Kulander Clown Prince of Diplomacy Award went to
Canadian guest Mikey Hall for his lifetime achievement in hobby
clownishness. John Barringer won the Outstanding PTKS Newbie
Award for standing in against hardened tournament veterans and
cutthroats and gaining a piece of one shared victory.
This year's DIP event provided some publicity for WBC. Players
and the TD were shadowed by a free-lance reporter, Blake Eskin,
who was writing an article for the Washington Post Magazine.
At this writing, the article was slated for publication in the
magazine in late October or early November. Eskin spent three
days following players and hobby luminaries to try to gain insight
into what drives the hobby, its players, and the hobby's relationship
or connections to realpolitik. Eskin cheerfully denied (at least
in public) that what he saw was three days of clown college.
He left promising to come back another time to try the game,
and walked away with a colorful and cheap certificate, the Director's
Choice Award, earned primarily by entertaining the tournament
director at the playful expense of others.
The tournament pool was an interesting mix of WBC regulars,
PTKS regulars, and WBC veterans who hadn't played Diplomacy
for years. Several of those left promising to return to play
Dip in future years. Since Diplomacy players have a reputation
as sort of clannish and insular, slow to accept new friends into
their ranks, it was high praise indeed that a number of non-regulars
played, did well, and most importantly had fun.
Dip at WBC was the final leg of the annual Eastern Swing
event, a compilation of tournament results from East Coast Dip
tournaments, created to encourage Diplomacy-related travel in
regional tourneys and increase tournament participation. Doug
Moore won the third annual Swing, edging out Andy Bartalone,
who made a late run at his second Swing title by winning Dip
at WBC. Congratulations to Doug, the East Coast Diplomacy Champion
PTKS again sends its thanks to Don Greenwood and the BPA
for the opportunity to put on a well-received event.
Best Country Awards:
Best Austria: Nathan barnes - 16 centers in a 2-way draw.
Best England: Adam Sigal - 12 centers in a 2-way draw.
Best France: Tom Kobrin - 18 center solo
Best Germany: Doug Moore - 12 centers in a 3-way draw.
Best Italy: Graham Woodring- 16 centers in a 3-way draw.
Best Russia: Andy bartalone - 18 center solo.
Best Turkey: Carl Willner - 15 centers in a 2-way draw.
The WBC 2004 Best Country Awards went to: