1. Team Phoenix - Ed Mabrey, Myrlin Hepworth and Aaron Johnson were probably the best group of poets I could have worked with. The drive on that team, the amount of work we put into our stuff - up until the last minute... Team Phoenix has set the bar for every team going forward. No disrespect to Corbet Dean, Taneka Stotts, Trish JusTrish, Technocolor Holly (2002) Johathan Standifird, Regina Blakely, Corbet Dean (2003), Brent Heffron, Corbet Dean, and Aimee Doyle (2005), Corbet Dean, Lauren Perry, Shaun Kuter (2006), or Jeremiah Blue (2008), but goddamn did we work for what we got. We left it all on the stage.
2. Dane Kuttler - for so many reasons. Her Tel Aviv poem. Reminders at 12 Tribes. Dancing at the afterparty - something I did not get to do enough of.
3. The staff at the Hawthorn Suites. Phenomenal group of people who bent over backwards for us (giving us the keys to the executive conference room to practice), giving us an extra room free of charge so no one had to surf the couch, doing our dishes, cleaning our rooms, bonding with us in the lobby. If you ever get back to West Palm Beach - Hawthorn Suites.
4. Ed Mabrey - He gets a special mention for respecting my work. Seriously... I know he hates it when we say this - but he's Ed fuckin' Mabrey, and I got a chance to work with him. All you haters on "Cereal Aisle Racist" - we adapted that for a group piece. Ed respected the writing, understood the message - and had we made it finals, it would have exploded. Plus, he arranged a stretch limosuine to pick us up in Fort Lauderdale.
5. The snorkeling trip - to those who didn't get to come because of my incompetence (Bundy and Kat), I am SOOOOO sorry. To those who did brave the seas (Stefan, Christian, Lauren, Raul of Slamarillo, Issac, Cheryl and Tara of Boise - and I know I'm forgetting someone else), I'm glad I got to see it through your eyes.
6. My local people - Bret, Judy, Maria, Danny, Cris Rapp, Chris Bentall, Joe, Andrew (even though he heckled me during my poem), Jeanne, Randy... Thank for coming out and making me feel welcome.
7. Team Vancouver - You guys were awesome. The comraderie and kinship I felt with you guys really made our bout fun, and the too brief times we spent together awesome. Can't wait to see you all next year.
8. All Arizona teams - I think this year we came together as a state - Flagstaff, Mesa, Tucson, and Phoenix - E Pluribus AWESOME.
9. The Nerd Slam - Seriously, PSI. It's time to make that a 3 hour event.
10. Team San Jose - Didn't get to hang out as much as I would have liked... but the time we did hang out was fun. See some of you soon!
Special Mention: My dad for making it out to all three events and the Nerd Slam. People - you didn't know this, but my dad flyered the hell out of all the downtown condos, including posters in the elevators and at all entry and access points. Best story: Team Vancouver totally offended my dad TWICE. To the point where bailed on the Nerd Slam with the masturbation poem. And then Robbie Q. asking "What? Doesn't your dad masturbate?"