After 63 game recaps and more than 300 puns (and perhaps five good puns), the Tourist Trap Tournament comes to a close with the Final Fjord Plus Three More.
Click for larger size.
Fjords v Las Vegas
Mascots: Haddock v Sinners
After a long run of flash and
swagger, the Sinners made all kinds of questionable decisions, basically rolling
right over and submitting to their Norwegian foes; there’s no doubt they were
out partying a bit too hard these last few days, because they sure looked
washed-out, as the Haddock darted around with ease. Some commentators have
voiced suspicions that the Sinners were betting against themselves, but the
reality is that the Haddock were simply the better team, with a positively
oceanic gap between the teams in terms of endurance and general clean living.
Running of the Bulls v Easter Island
Mascots: Stampeding Hemingways v
The Stampeding Hemingways often
have their ups and downs--they may get knocked down, but make no mistake, the
Run also rises. The Furious Foreheads never found the upper hand, and seemed weighed
down by a mental block. The Stampeding Hemingways move on, as war-proven
veterans, making for an intriguing final match-up against the Fjords: The Old
Men and the North Sea.
* * *
Thanks so much to all the fans
on the blog, on Twitter, and on Facebook. These two teams wouldn’t have gotten
this far without you--the Fjords had a particularly strong base of supporters
who most certainly nudged them forward.
Let’s look at the match-up:
Running of the Bulls:
Strengths: Brute force,
killer instincts, famous fans, and man
can they run.
Weaknesses: Easily distracted by the color red, frequently called
for charging, not a ton of finesse.
Strengths: Long reach, incredible history, rock-solid foundation,
stoic endurance beyond compare, utter charm, ability to get out of tight spots.
Weaknesses: Slow-moving, stuck in their ways.
Final result: Running of the
(After--by my count--more than 300 puns, I’m fresh out right now, so no
extended recap. Maybe later!)
Once again, some fierce competition in the Tourist Trap Tournament, as the Most Excellent Eight battled it out:
Art & Architecture final: Pyramids at Giza v Easter Island
Mascots: Pharaohs v Furious
With their dueling long-standing traditions
and chiseled physiques, these two teams were closely matched. The Furious
Foreheads finally found their legs at the end, while the Pharaohs lived up to
their reputation of slowing down, looking petrified out there and, at best,
merely walking like Egyptians, and leaving the crowd tut-tutting .
Culture (or Something) final: Running of the Bulls v Forbidden
Mascots: Stampeding Hemingways v
The Forbidden City was strong,
no question, ruling the court and showing off the philosophies of their famous
playbook, Classic of Rites. But in an
amazing race-to-the-end finish, the Stampeding Hemingways narrowly beat the
horn, ending the Dynasties’ long run.
The Natural World final: Norway’s Fjords v Maasai Mara
Mascots: Haddock v Big Cats
This was a wild one, with raw
natural talent on full display, with breathtaking shots all over the place, shutters
clicking everywhere. The Scandinavians’ chilly, stoic might won the day,
getting out of many a tight spot.
Cities & Squares & Markets final: Las Vegas v Dubai
Mascots: Sinners v Shiny New
These two teams entered the
competition with outsized reputations for swagger and excess and more than a
bit of trouble in their backgrounds—and a hope for redemption. The Sinners’
strong suits: sprawling reach, a willingness to take chances, and a reputation
for conjuring big-time magic. The Shiny New Stuff’s key strengths: boldness and
ambition like no other, style somewhat less profane than the Sinners’ ways, and
an array of innovative ways of doing things. Ultimately, the numbers simply
favored the Sinners and their decades of experience in the game.