Sunday, August 28, 2016

Proposed Rule Changes For Outsider Poetry Slam League of America 2017

There have been several rule changes proposed at the Competition Committee Meeting here in Rockford at the winter meetings, and I'd like to sort out a few of the proposed changes that have already been adopted, a few that have been rejected, and some that are still under consideration. 

1) All haikus will suffer an initial ten point penalty before being performed. This rule was objected to vociferously by the new Tokyo Godzillas team representative, but nonetheless passed with a majority of delegations simply arguing haikus were poetry we can't use. 

2) No berets. Berets are now verboten at OPSLA bouts. 

No Nantucket for beret-wearing poets says OPSLA hierarchy

3) You sing the blues, you lose. Downer poems will be actively discouraged and derided by the judges, and the audience will be openly encouraged to disrupt performances they find depressing by hissing or playing The Village Peoples' "Macho Man" on the jukebox.

4) No epics, Homer. Diatribes, jerrymiads, and filibusters are now expressly forbidden at OPSLA events. You want to obstruct become a Republican Congressman, but at OPSLA events we're going to keep it lively and fast-paced. 

Many other rules were shot down in committee, including an attempt to eliminate alcoholic beverages from OPSLA events. As league founder Dr. Millard Rausch said, "How else would anyone be able to sit in a room full of poets if booze wasn't readily available?" 

The Winter Meetings will go on until March, when the delegates will emerge with a s chedule for the 2017 season, and several announcements concerning new franchises, rules, venues, celebrity poets, and television schedules.