Illustration by Jeremy Kai/Torontoist.
We all want to know what’s awesome and what sucks. But keeping track of top-ten lists, tennis tournaments, the Oscars, national elections, Nobel Prizes, and little-league trophies can be exhausting. Local writer couple Alison Broverman and Justin Go seek to simplify these limiting criteria for achievement with their blog, Tournament of Everything, a scratch-each-other’s-eyes-out round robin between, well, everything.
The idea formed after Broverman (a former Torontoist editor) wrote a series called “Tournament of Vegetables” for the National Post last year. “After that I was joking that we should do a tournament of everything,” she says. “We just kept joking about it together.”
Their first project as a duo, the blog inspires a bit of healthy competition between the couple, as well. On their respective laptops, each hits the Wikipedia “random article” button, which gives them the two competing topics for that day. So the video game King’s Quest II might go bare-knuckles against a sixteenth-century Japanese samurai, or a Hyundai engine will have to duke it out with the daughter of a Greek god. Each spends half an hour writing their case, then readers vote on which item they think is better. “It’s funny because we do get kind of a weird rivalry about it,“ says Go, describing when he recently had to defend a Texas country radio station against ABBA’s Waterloo album. “I’m like, I kind of liked ABBA a bit before, but now…”
Incorporating sources from outside Wikipedia for each post, Tournament of Everything is a daily chance to learn about—and fight over—a bunch of things you haven’t heard of and probably can’t pronounce. You’re saying José Antonio de Artigas Sanz is better than the Mateiaşul Mare River? Puh-lease.