CO Trash discussion

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marnold
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CO Trash discussion

Post by marnold »

Thoughts on the Chicago Open trash tournament? I've already been told the tournament skewed "old" compared to tournaments like ASS, but my instinct is that David and I might have pulled this a bit younger than previous incarnations of this tournament. FWIW, question-writing was about 40%/30%/30% between Andrew, David Seal and me, with all questions edited by Andrew.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-TN) »

I had a great time, even if I sucked a lot at it.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by Jeaton1 »

I found the CO Trash Tournament to be excellently written and had an excellent time playing in this tournament. I do not think that is was skewed to be pre-90s at all as there was a good amount of new TV, music and video games distributed well-throughout the packets as well as your typically expected 70s and 80s stuff. It was well spread out among the decades so not as to totally exclude players of any age. I also think that the quasi-hybrid smattering of academic clues as give-aways (and that interesting tossup of "A Theory of Justice") should be how TRASH tournaments are written when the audience is your general quizbowl audience and definitely helps those who do not usually enjoy TRASH...well, enjoy TRASH.

In summary, much kudos to Andrew Yaphe for producing this great and enjoyable tournament.
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Post by fizzball »

I've already been told the tournament skewed "old" compared to tournaments like ASS, but my instinct is that David and I might have pulled this a bit younger than previous incarnations of this tournament.
I haven't read the ASS questions close enough to compare, but I think your instincts are right.

I thought the set bettered the 2006 set in a few areas and maintained in the others. Music had more balance, whereas '06 had a lot of Zeke esoterica. Meta was much better. Meta is still Funn IMO, but this time I was forewarned, levels were low, and I'll give it up that my negging on complaints that I personally wrote about '06 was amusing for all (though the question had an error that made it hoseworthy). Powers were still misplaced in a few cases, but this was not as big a problem as in 2006. The only errors we noticed were Iggy Pop did the original version of China Girl, and the bit in the Meta question.

"Adam-12" might be a little dusty to ask in 2008 despite its presence on Hulu, and I was surprised to see a Sanford & Son bonus get bageled. But with TV getting such a small distribution in Andrew's sets already, I don't think TV was unduly gray. If getting a trash even to skew younger is a goal, then go to 3/3 or fewer sport questions.


I thought it was a very good set, and thanks & congrats to you, David, and Andrew for improving a strong product.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by theMoMA »

Thanks for writing an enjoyable tournament.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by BMHight »

I would like to compliment Andrew and company for a quality tournament, both in terms of question quality and logistics/management/moderation. If they decide to run it again in 2009, I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys trash tournaments or is even just curious about trying a trash tournament.

I thought the sports questions struck a nice balance between the "big five" (MLB, NBA, NFL, college hoops and college football), "medium four" (NHL/NASCAR/golf/tennis) and everything else. There was plenty of older/classic sports (MSG, NFL Cardinals, Deacon Jones, Jimmie Foxx, the Ara Parseghian bonus among others), which I enjoyed, but plenty of current sports questions too (Fred Taylor, Baseball Prospectus, Jeff Tedford, among many many others).

As for television, I thought the staff made a conscious effort to ensure that plenty of newer shows were included, especially on bonuses (30 Rock, Swingtown, Dirty Sexy Money, Top Chef). The lit questions, although never a strong suit for me, showed an interesting range of works, and I give the writers credit for branching out into territory that often doesn't get covered in many trash tournaments.

In closing, thanks again to the writers and staff, I enjoyed the day and hope everyone enjoyed the set.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by evilmonkey »

This tournament was a lot of fun, and was well-written, IMO. (This coming from the 0-10 team).

The inclusion of academic clues bothered me. Many people who are important have said trash shouldn't be used for clues in an academic tossup - why, then, should there be academic clues in trash tossups? If the purpose of the tournament is to reward the people with the most trash knowledge, then why should someone get a TU because they know the academic side?

I'm still not sure what I think about the Theory of Justice TU. I think we got it off an academic clue, but much of the earlier clues were trashy.

The videogame questions seemed to skew older, although I may be misremembering. However, as I am not up on current video games not named SSBB or Mario Galaxy, this didn't bother me. Also, Mike Bentley deserves some type of mention for powering a question after only hearing the words "In Clayfighter 63 1/2"

I thought in terms of time balance the sports questions were pretty good. However, the sports questions were quite difficult. As in, my team, with two sports enthusiasts, zeroed at least two sports bonuses in sports we knew. I would have liked to see more soccer questions (I believe there were only three - 2 TU and 1 bonus), but I'm biased. I was pleasantly surprised to hear a MLL bonus, though it was not for my team.

That said - bonus difficulty seemed to vary wildly. Some of the bonuses seemed like guaranteed 20s for anyone, while others seemed guaranteed 0's for all but the best. Once I lay my hands on the set, I'll be able to say more.

I had a lot of fun playing this, as did the other members of my team.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by Birdofredum Sawin »

Hey, I'm sorry not to have posted results for the tournament earlier, but I've been exhausted/without a computer/in transit.

Congratulations to Greg, Brian, Colby, and Jeremy, who won the tournament. They had a 9-1 record, losing by 5 in the final game to a team of Dren, Michael, Chris, and Eric. The latter team also ended up with a 9-1 record (having earlier lost to the team of Mike, Susan, Ed, and Andrew). As had been announced at the beginning of the tournament, the champion was decided by bonus conversion, and the Greg/Brian/Colby/Jeremy team had a convincing edge in that category. Full results and stats will be posted whenever Donald Taylor has a chance to get around to it.

I'll probably post some thoughts about the set when I'm more fully recovered from the weekend; I'm glad that people seem to have enjoyed it. If anyone currently has the set on a laptop and wants to make it accessible, please go ahead and do so. Otherwise, I'll try to do that later this week.

Thanks to Donald Taylor, who did a wonderful job manning the stat room for the tournament. Thanks also to Bruce, Seth Teitler, Jerry, Jonathan, Katy, Gautam, Ray Luo, and Ray Sun for moderating.

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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by cdcarter »

So this tournament pretty much ruled. I could see how people would argue it slanted towards "old" stuff, but I was absolutely fine with that.

I think the inclusion of academic clues was fine, because this was just a fun set. Would you rather there were just academic TUs and bonuses instead? Most if not all academic events have trash questions.

This set had some awesome answer selection. I mean Feeny! Human-form Cylons! Sweet jesus that was good!
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by millionwaves »

I really enjoyed this tournament, and thought that the academic clues were an interesting and amusing addition to the questions. Thanks to the writers for putting together a fine set.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by dtaylor4 »

Prelim stats can be found here.

Overall stats can be found here.

EDIT: fixed prelim link.
Last edited by dtaylor4 on Tue Jul 22, 2008 2:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by pray for elves »

dtaylor4 wrote:Prelim stats can be found here.

Overall stats can be found here.
...The stats are the same at both links.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by Eärendil »

Yeah, this tournament was a blast to play. Props to Trygve, Andrew, and Rob for letting me play on their team and being great teammates, and for Andrew, Michael, and David for creating a quality set. I think the tournament calendar could use more tournaments like this one.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by cdcarter »

DeisEvan wrote:
dtaylor4 wrote:Prelim stats can be found here.

Overall stats can be found here.
...The stats are the same at both links.
No they aren't. They are the file names but in different folders.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by dtaylor4 »

No, he's right. Gimme a sec.

EDIT: They're fixed now.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by MLafer »

wow, the championship team has about the most balanced stat line i've ever seen
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by Mike Bentley »

This tournament was very good. I enjoyed it more than the 06 edition, and I felt that it was friendlier towards younger players. Pretty much all of the tossups we heard were pyramidal, and the bonuses did a great job of being balanced. The meta in this tournament was done well, as there was obviously some demand for it from players at the tournament but it didn't significantly hamper teams who are not up on it. Questions like the CMU one where Paul Litvak was the second to last clue seemed like a good idea for pleasing people who want meta without making the entire tournament hinge on it.

I still would have preferred a different distribution. I am aware that this is sort of an "Andrew Yaphe novelty tournament" so we're going to get a larger than usual amount of "trash lit". I think it will come as no surprise that I would have liked to see 1/1 videogames in the tournament. It would have also been nice to see some more Internet trash in this tournament, as it's something that I believe is pretty important to the younger crowd at this tournament. Some of the sub-distributions still swung older than I would have liked to have seen as well. Only a handful of bands from this decade that I enjoy came up, although that is at least partially due to my taste in music. Things like tossups on that Cosby Show spinoff and the Sanford and Son bonus weren't unreasonably hard, but they're still something that it's a little hard for me to care about or even watch if I did care. I'd wager there is at least a small correlation between age and points at this tournament because of the distribution, but I suppose this is to be expected a little bit. Anyways, it's not like the distribution and intentions of this tournament were a big secret, so I pretty much expected this and still had a good time playing in it.

The number of common link tossups, especially in music, was an interesting decision. I don't know if I disliked this per se, but it was certainly a different way than normal trash music questions go, which can be a good thing. A lot of trash music tossups involve clues on covers of songs, stuff from their videos, etc. that are often times not very useful, so those type of questions help alleviate that problem. To me it seemed like there were more common link tossups in this tournament than your average mACF tournament, but, again, I can't decide if that benefited or hurt the tournament (I'm probably leaning towards benefiting).

One thing that I didn't like very much was only receiving 10 packets for $100. I realize that for pretty much every tournament ever editors are putting more work in than they are compensated for, but if you're going to charge that sort of base rate I'd at least appreciate a final. It was pretty lame to declare the winner of the tournament on bonus conversion.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by Birdofredum Sawin »

So, here's a few observations on the tournament.

First, about the "skewing old" thing. I co-wrote this tournament with David Seal and Michael Arnold, who just finished their sophomore year of college. On the whole, I was interested to discover that they wrote more "old" questions than I did. For instance, in TV I wrote such questions as the Cylons TU (from the current Battlestar); the TU on Michael from Lost; the TU on Moonlight; the bonus on Heroes; the bonus on 30 Rock. David and Michael wrote such TV questions as the TU on Adam-12 and the bonus on Sanford and Son. Now, I also wrote "older" stuff (e.g. the bonus on Murder, She Wrote) and they also wrote "younger" stuff (e.g. the bonus on Top Chef), but it really wasn't the case that the preponderance of the "old" stuff in the tournament was due to me, and the "young" stuff due to them.

Similarly, David and Michael wrote essentially all the sports in the tournament, a substantial portion of which was on people and events of the '70s and '80s. And a lot of their music questions were on songs and artists of the same era (e.g. "Songs in the Key of Life," "Piano Man," The Kinks), whereas all the contemporary hip-hop was basically by me. My conclusion: there really isn't all that much correlation between a person's age and the trash subjects he inevitably finds interesting. If one personally dislikes trash tournaments with a number of questions on pre-1990 (or "pre-whatever") stuff, that's fine; but I think it's time to recognize that this is only a personal preference.

Second, about the distribution. In response to criticism of the previous tournaments, I tried to have this one contain more questions on TV, video games, and comics, and less meta. I think these goals were achieved, though obviously there might still have been more or less of any of these than certain people might like. For the record, I think there was at least 2/2 TV per round (sometimes more). There were very few video game/comics questions in the previous installments of this tournament; this time, there were probably at least one video game and one comics question per round, and occasionally 1/1 of either of those appeared in a round. There was only a smattering of meta -- the tossup on "meta," three or four passing meta clues in tossups, and a handful of facetious meta references in bonuses (e.g. comparing the plot of the movie "The Dancer Upstairs" to ACF Nats '04, because both featured a "President Ezequiel").

This tournament also featured a bit less sports than previous installments; I don't know how people felt about that.

Anyway, if people think after consideration of the set that the distribution could be further tweaked, please feel free to argue as much. As I said, I took previous criticisms in account when constructing the distribution of this set; I have no idea whether I'll have time to work on this event again next year, but if I do I'll certainly consider any arguments for alterations put forth in this thread. Even if I don't work on it, I hope that whoever takes over the tournament will be inspired by whatever suggestions are made here.

Also, if you have any comments (praise, complaints, suggestions for improvement) which you don't want to post in public for whatever reason, feel free to email them to me at adyaphe at gmail dot com. Even if I don't work on this next year, I'll make sure that whoever writes the next tournament is made aware of them.

Third, about the price. I think we undercharged on the last two of these; it's possible we overcharged on this one, though obviously that's all relative. (Considering the amount of time it took to write the questions, it hardly matters whether we were to charge $60 per team or $100 per team or even $150 per team; we aren't really getting "due" compensation for our efforts regardless). I based my fee partly on what Weiner was going to charge for his '07 CO trash tournament, and partly on what I thought the "market would bear." As for the lameness of the ending, it might be worth noting that the Greg/Colby/Brian/Jeremy team knew going into their final game that they had essentially clinched the tournament. I'm not saying that they played more lazily than they would have if they needed that win, but if they hadn't lost by 5 in that game, they would have been two clear of the field and, as at previous installments of this tournament, no final would have been needed.

I may weigh in again later, but that's all I have to say for now, save that it was fun to write the tournament with David and Michael, and that I'm glad that so many people seem to have enjoyed it.

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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by cdcarter »

You can download the set here.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by MichaelKearney »

Being that this was my first "ACF-style" trash tournament, out of 16 or so other trash tournaments, I was expecting a ton of meta and academic clues. I was really pleased to see that there was a lot less of both compared to the Keller/Richler sets. I don't particularly care for either, but it's easier to take when the answer itself doesn't require meta/academic knowledge, instead making itself present in little asides during the clue. As far as age-based difficulty, I can say that I thought it was fairly balanced in the topics presented, rarely giving tossups on things that are unreachable by older/younger players. Internet Trash was stuff like Rejected(an Oscar-nominated short film), and Baseball Prospectus...Videogames tended toward big-name games that even if you'd never played, you still conceivably heard about(Pong, Wind Waker, Earthworm Jim)...Music tossups were about bands/albums that everyone has at least heard of(Oasis, The Kinks, Pretenders). The only bonus I heard that was completely from left-field was the Powerthirst bonus(did anybody else get this? I mean, I love Bear-Blasting more than anyone, but it's a weebit obscure)

As far as the bad stuff, we had a couple issues with what was underlined as the answer, but that's totally up to the reader to determine what he wants to accept, and it never changed the outcome of the game, so meh. As the second place team, we knew going into everything that if there was a tie, it was to be decided on bonus conversion. That's the part that kinda sucked, because we were going into a playoff match that didn't matter at all. We had lost to a team we hadn't played yet, and even if we slaughtered them 400-10, the match itself didn't matter. I don't personally think that Jeremy and co. played any softer or leisurely, and I don't even know if we would've won a finals-style match against them. I think that both teams would've liked the opportunity.

However, since nobody on my team takes it too seriously, and it's not like anybody was a dick about it, I'll refrain from the virulent name-calling that's usually a highlight of Internet discussions. Andrew ran a fantastic tournament, readers were cordial and professional(despite my repeated attempts to make them laugh while reading bonuses), and I got to meet a bunch of people who never seem to come to trash tournaments. We're generally pretty nice, I promise. OMGACFIZIMPOSSIBLELULZ.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by Strongside »

This was only my second trash tournament, and I am not a very good trash player, but I enjoyed the tournament, and thought it was very well written.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by grapesmoker »

I feel weird commenting in a trash thread, but as someone who read this tournament and normally hates trash, I actually felt like I would have really enjoyed playing it. Make of that what you will.
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Re: CO Trash discussion

Post by ValenciaQBowl »

I said this to a few people while playing the trash tourney, but I think I've discovered that I've had more fun playing Andrew's three CO trash tournaments than anything else I've ever played. This doesn't mean I like trash better than academic; actually I feel exactly the opposite. It's that the questions are great, and I can simply enjoy the experience of hearing them and joking about them with the competition since I have no concern about winning or losing. When playing the CO or lit, like most of us, I'm very concerned about playing my best for myself and teammates and about winning, so I squirm over things I should be getting and crab after matches about things I could've done better. But in these three trash tournaments I don't care about getting beat and can just enjoy.

I dug it and thank Andrew and his co-writers. This is the only trash I'll ever play, and I hope it goes down again next summer.
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