Jigger Wieners, Worlds, and Friggin’ Green Redux

The last time Rizzo’s wife and eggs went on vaca, we got”Searching For Wakefield.” Now we get this. It’s a tad randomer, don’tcha think?

Why’d you leave the keys upon the table?

You wanted to.

Yep, the damn keys go wherever the hell I decide to put them.

The wife and kids are away for a week, and I feel bad that I am so stoked. An entire week of sleeping too late and walking around the house, nude (except for acrylic paint adorning sensitive areas) in a Diet Coke-induced trance can do wonders for one’s burnt out psyche. The last time they went on vacation, I submitted”Searching For Jamie Wakefield.” And the rest, as they say, is a JPEG-laden living history.

So what’s the encore for this vacation? Um, I don’t know. But it’ll probably suck, ’cause I done found that Wakefield fellow. He was living in my basement. Yes, Wakefield living in my basement is a metaphor.

The multiplayer game that was a sacrosanct non-tourney Saturday ritual has all but died – Anthony and Andy haven’t bought any cards since Invasion, and Sean is so befuddled by the onslaught of gold cards that he has regressed to building mono-colored decks.

For a period of no less than three months, it was just Sean and I bumping uglies, mano a mano with mana.

But, last week, Andy showed up.

It doesn’t matter that he only had two decks with him: Delusions/Donate (no, not Ill-usions, I said”De-lusions,” as in Delusions of Mediocrity) and Flying Squirrels. It had been quite some time since I had last played multiplayer, except for the few-odd times at CMU where the Foily Five was split between Scotty T, Eubroken, and I – so naturally I was a tad rusty.

Punchline: Great! You’ll wake up with a satisfied smile, while I’ll wake up with lockjaw!

When you wish to put away your tools, you place them into a….

Let me tell you just how difficult it is to kill two players with Donate/Delusions. Um… Hard.

Let me tell you just how difficult it is to kill two players with fifty Squirrels and Saprolings that grow Skyshaper wings. Um… Not as hard.

We played about fifteen games, and I won the first thirteen. In anguish, I asked Sean to pull out his worst deck so that I could perhaps pilot it to a loss. He grabbed a mono blue deck, but he pulled out all the Islands and replaced them with Forests. Heh. Bastard.

We now conclude the”dirty multiplayer” segment of this article.

Hey, Worlds happened.

I could’ve sworn I put Ale Borteh on my Fantasy Team, but I just can’t friggin’ remember. Also, Mike Turian, Aaron Forsythe, Andy J, Eu friggin’ broken, Tighty Whitey Guervin, and someone else that I can’t even remember went to bat for a brother. Two brothers in the Top Eight? I’m tech. Unless I forgot to add Borteh. Then I’m assier than anything that has ever been, or ever can be, ass.

But I really wanted to throw caution to the wind and pick the coolest names – Joost Vollebregt, Bram Snepvangers, Bjorn Jocumsen, Wolfgang Eder, Jelger Wiegersma, La’za’r Szabo, Oyvind Odegaard, and Prapon Maneechareonwong. And no matter what the hell I do, I just can’t get Word to print the”O” in Oyvind with the line through it like the Sideboard does.

What my spellchecker recommended for the above paragraph:

“But I really wanted to throw caution to the wind and pick the coolest names – Joust Vollebregt, Brim Snepvangers, Bjorn Jocose, Wolfgang Deer, Jigger Wieners, Lazar Sabot, Ovine Overgaard, and Propone Maneechareonwong. And no matter what the hell I do, I just can’t get Word to print the”O” in Ovine with the line through it like the Sideboard does.”

Jigger Wieners?

I am truly laughing my ass off.



And Cho-Manno’s Blessing naming Red,”Cho: Red” for short, comes out like this:


Joost Friggin’ Rizzo.


I built two Extended decks about a week before Worlds for no apparent reason – White Weenie and Secret Friggin’ Force. Both of y’all decktypes kicked major ass in Toronto. I am the metagame personified. I guess all those cameras that are watching my every move, a la The Truman Show and Ed TV, were broadcasting via closed-circuit to each Worlds competitors hotel room the day before deck registration. I hope they turned off the cameras before I…



We now complete the”Ode to Mason” segment of this article.

Am I ever wrong about anything?

Then why am I complete and utter ass at Magic?

Oh, must be ’cause I suck at Magic.

How bad you ask? Well, let’s just say that Lava Zombie may be a big part of the deck I will play at the next IBC qualifier.

Oh, before I forget… Last week I was hit with the”I’ve sent this along for your comments” or whatever the hell that virus was. Yeah, Crazy Pierre got neat little random stuff from my C-drive. As a result, if you wish to send me any kind of attachment, kindly put something in the subject line along the lines of”Chief, this ain’t no friggin’ virus,” or”THIS IS A VIRUS FOR YOU, RIZZO!” If you decide one day to up and send me something out of the clear blue sky, and have never done so before, please think before you drink.


I went into a few”Teen Party” rooms on Irc asking if anyone had Ravenous Rats or Craw Wurms for trade. And wouldn’t you know…

(Screenames edited, lest someone find out they play Magic)

***You are in”Teen Party” or some other nebulous name***

BT4Becky: Anyone have Ravenous Rats?

Dr******: I think I have some.

BT4Becky: I need 4.

Dr******: LOL! Aren’t they commons?


***You are in”Party House” or some other nebulous name***

BT4Becky: Anyone have Craw Wurms?

Se******: LOL! Isn’t that a Magic card?


And then, the kicker:

***You have just entered room”Gay Chat 1.” ***

FrigginRizzo: Boo!

FrigginRizzo: someone just slipped me a rufie.

FrigginRizzo: Hello there, I’m Timmy Power Gamer and I need Craw Wurms!

RA*****: Huh?

Yo*****: Craw Wurms are ass!

FrigginRizzo: Um, no they aren’t!

Yo*****: They cost like 8 or something.

Un-be-friggin-lievable! No, not the fact that I used my real screenname in a gay chat – hmm, perhaps that is a cry for help?

Conclusion: Magic nerds are everywhere. Oh, and Meridian Magic’s IRC quotes aren’t funny.

Oh yeah, Worlds.

Dear Anthony Alongi, Sean McKeown, and Right Reverend Toby Wachter,

How impossible is it to write a billion match reports?

Why’d you leave the keys upon the table? Is it because you wanted to?



I’m feeling very Boydellish, thanks for asking.

On August 25th at PTQ – New Orleans, I’ll be playing This or Something Else:

//NAME: This (a.k.a., more fun than a person should be allowed to have in IBC)

4 Nightscape Familiar

4 Ravenous Rats

4 Shivan Zombie

4 Lava Zombie

4 Urza’s Rage

4 Blazing Specter

2 Flametongue Kavu

4 Skizzik

3 Thunderscape Battlemage

3 Crypt Angel

9 Mountain

7 Swamp

4 Urborg Volcano

3 Llanowar Wastes

1 Keldon Necropolis

// sideboard, sort of, maybe

3 Pyre Zombie

4 Terminate

4 Agonizing Demise

3 Marauding Knight

//NAME: Something Else

4 Nightscape Familiar

4 Urza’s Rage

4 Ghitu Fire

4 Fire / Ice

4 Fact or Fiction

4 Undermine

4 Evasive Action

4 Prophetic Bolt

2 Pyre Zombie

26 lands to be determined, along with the sideboard, yo.

And I don’t care how bad they suck, because I’m going to win by intimidating my opponents to concession. Watch:



Hello, Nawleans, name’s John, and I don’t like gumbo.

Oh yeah – Worlds.

Eugene, Eugene, Eu made a machine. You finished 12th. Who the hell are you and why did you pick up sixteen Pro Tour points and ten grand?

Michael Michael Motorcycle finished 5th, with a helping hand from Ale Borteh’s concession, which of course was amazingly wrong of him to do, but I’ll look the other way because I don’t really have any convictions – I just fake it.

I thought it was bunk when Ale Shvartsman scooped to Zvi in order to help him reach Top Eight at Pro Tour or Grand Prix: Somewhere… But why was I glad when Borteh scooped to Mike? Why didn’t it piss me off? After all, am I not the guy who claims to have integrity and the competitive spirit oozing from anything that can possible ooze? What’s next for me – Net Decks and IDs?




Self-righteous suicide.

Maybe I was just glad that Mike was assured of the opportunity to play for the title of World Champion. Perhaps I was reveling in the glory of Eubroken’s coming out party, thus, got extra giddy when I realized I could live vicariously through two guys at once, which, although very painful (not to mention making it quite difficult to ride a bicycle), is bigger than the issue at hand.

Or is it?

I am the Emotional Tampon of Magic, damnit, but can’t I let my guard down for a moment and ask someone else carry the torch for a day or two?

I can and I did. I nominate, um, er, Mike Mason, he of Annhyzir Bush’s helpdesk fame, for the title of Emotional Tampon of Magic. For two whole days.

In the final round of Pro Tour – LA, Mike had to play Scott Teamann, who had come back from a 0-3 start to potentially finish in the money and gain a qualification to Barcelona if Mike would concede…

Scooperson was not in the house. And Tbag’s Magic career was sent careening downwards to a point of actually getting his ass beaten by yours truly at the Apocalypse Prerelease.

What the hell is the point?

Well, it’s this:

If everyone just friggin’ played it out, there would be no need for Issue Boy because there would be no expectations of anything less than 100%, and I could just go back to living a dreary, pathetic, shut-in life.

Yet, I’m still stoked for Mike. And still sympathize with Tbag.









Joost Friggin’ Rizzo.


Oh yeah, Team USA won. Again. Yawn.

“Will they [Harvey, Blackwell, Hegsted] bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan, and never ever let me forget I’m a man? Probably, since they are bent, twisted, somewhat mutilated, and most definitely broken beyond repair.”

-Me,”Broken Beyond Repair,” June 11, 2001

I am always right. See? If you’re vague enough, you too can be right about everything.

I once beat Eubroken in one game during a draft at CMU. It doesn’t matter that he was mana screwed to the fullest extent. I once beat Mike Turian in one match in a draft at CMU. It doesn’t matter that he was mana screwed to the fullest extent. I am the world beater! Since the title of”The People’s Champion” has been bestowed upon one Sol to the Malka, I’ll henceforth be known as”The Sucky Player’s Champion.” And since the intials”BP,” as in”Bad Player,” have been endowed upon one Mike to the Flicky Flick Flores – and to a lesser extent John Shuler – I’ll henceforth be known as WP, as in”Worst Player” Rizzo.

Tom Van de Logt, Champion of The World, is kind of a cool name too. But it’s no Joost.

How do I take this…

Friggin’ Green

4 Llanowar Elves

4 Fyndhorn Elves

4 Wall of Roots

4 Elvish Lyrist

4 Survival of the Fittest

4 Natural Order

1 Sliver Queen

1 Stampeding Wildebeests

1 Squee, Goblin whore

1 Uktabi Orangutan

1 Quirion Ranger

1 Spike Weaver

3 Spike Feeder

1 Blastoderm

1 Best fatty ever printed

2 Deranged Hermit

2 Masticore

1 Wall of Blossoms

13 Forest

4 Wasteland

3 Gaea’s Cradle

…my Top Eight deck from last Extended season, and make it viable without Survival of The Fatties?

Let’s start with what we should probably keep.

4 Llanowar Elves

4 Fyndhorn Elves

4 Wall of Roots

4 Elvish Lyrist

4 Natural Order

1 Stampeding Wildebeests

1 Uktabi Orangutan

1 Quirion Ranger

1 Spike Weaver

3 Spike Feeder

1 Blastoderm

1 Best fatty ever printed

2 Deranged Hermit

2 Masticore

1 Wall of Blossoms

That’s thirty-four cards right there, chief. And since I remember thirteen Forests not being enough, let’s add two more.

15 Forest

4 Wasteland

3 Gaea’s Cradle

Hi, I’m up to fifty-si cards already. What decks should be prevalent? Well, Sligh should be everywhere, especially since Tri (yeah, I’m still calling it that) has at least taken a backseat to Oath, White Weenie, and Slivers.

What wrecks Sligh?

Big Walls. Got ’em.

Life gain. Got it.

Huge-ass Fatties. Got ’em. Well, one anyway.

Adding a fourth Spike Feeder would be amazing against Sligh, and may even help out against White Weenie, which will drop Mo Runes and a couple Shadows before casting Geddon. Wait!

Mo Runes is going to be a bitch, and those Shadows won’t exactly be fun either. How does mono-Green deal with Mo Runes and Shadows? Heh, last year Eubroken showed me how: lose.

Eubroken was playing a Junk variant with Mo Runes, Shadow dudes, Incinerate, Scroll, and the kicker: Rancor. A 4/2 Shadow with protection from green (not that that is necessary) is bad times. Heck, Eubroken even suited up Mo Runes with a Rancor, served into my helpless ass, then tapped another Mo for pro: green. Aha! Cursed Scroll x4!

Well, it could solve many problems, right?

4 Cursed Scroll

Wait! If we use Scrolls, Stampeding Wildebeests seems pretty crappy. Take that bad boy out, and since the only reason Wall of Blossoms was in there was to be bounced with the ‘Beests, we’ll take that bad boy out, too. And Blastoderm isn’t amazing when he can’t be bounced every third turn and refreshed, although the protection from Swords to Plowshares is a nice benefit.

More times that I would’ve liked, I was in a stalemate situation and couldn’t really push through much damage. I can think of one huge fattie that eliminates stalemates: Thorn Elemental. He’s also one less to cast than Verdant Force, and this deck could reliably cast the best fatty on Earth by turn four.

1 Thorn Elemental

Cursed Scroll will likely be much more popular that it was last year, mostly due to White Weenie coming up in here in droves, so perhaps another Se Monkey is warranted. Plus, White Weenie likes to use Masticore themselves, and if Sligh ever wises up and starts to use him as well…

2 Uktabi Orangutan

Since we’re going with 4 Scroll, perhaps two Masticore is overkill, especially since it’s main purpose was to kill Mo Runes and other annoying weenies. But Masty has synergy with Scroll. Damn, tough one. Keep in two Masticore for now; heck, if Extended is going to have more creatures than last year, Masty is a good bet.

That leaves one slot, but I need two for the secret tech that’s not really secret nor amazing, but damned effective nevertheless: Gaea’s Blessing. If Oath is going to be kicking ass in droves, then a couple of Blessings might help a brother to prevent an auto-loss. And it’s not like it’s ever a bad card anyway. Want access to extra Monkeys, Hermits, Feeders, Weavers, Orders, Wastelands, Cradles, etc? Blessing is never useless, and is purely nuts in many situations.

But what to take out?

Well, how about a Scroll? It’s not really what Secret Force was about — and while it does solve problems, so does Masticore and 7/7 fatties that spit out children like nobody’s business. Heck, we could always put a fourth Scroll in the sideboard. But we won’t.

2 Gaea’s Blessing.

Friggin’ Green Redux

4 Llanowar Elves

4 Fyndhorn Elves

4 Wall of Roots

4 Elvish Lyrist

4 Natural Order

3 Cursed Scroll

2 Uktabi Orangutan

1 Quirion Ranger

3 Spike Feeder

1 Spike Weaver

1 Verdant Force

2 Deranged Hermit

2 Masticore

1 Thorn Elemental

2 Gaea’s Blessing

15 Forest

4 Wasteland

3 Gaea’s Cradle

The board looks like this:

4 Choke (never, ever resolved – but hey, a brother gotta get one off eventually)

3 Powder Keg (mainly for Slivers, but who knows?)

4 Emerald Charm (hey, Tri may have some breath left in its lungs)

2 Spike Weaver (you can never have too many fog machines that can beef up your guys)

2 Quirion Ranger (Stasis may be back better than ever because of Forsaken Wastes)

There are a few concerns with the deck – the fact that I can’t up and Survival for the dudes that I need, as well as thinking that I really don’t need two Hermits, and also the fact that I almost want to put in a couple of Worldly Tutors – but all in all, it looks okay for now. Although I’m sure I’ll be pissed when I have two Monkeys in my hand and the only target is my own Scroll.

How do the matches shape up?

Sligh: Was a bye last year with Survival, and still looks like a bye without it.

White Weenie: If Meddling Mage shows up en masse and picks Scroll or Masty, then that could be bad times. Heck, White Weenie could be bad times anyway with Mo Runes, Shadows, Crusade, and ‘Geddon. Still, 50/50 seems like a fair assessment. Maybe.

Slivers: I never had to play any Sliver decks last year, but I don’t think I like this matchup very much.

Tri (yeah, I’m still calling it that, dammit): Four Lyrists without the possibility of them being Firestormed into oblivion seems good for me.

Oath: Probably a tough matchup in the hands of someone who knows what they’re doing; otherwise, I think the Blessings will be good times when they trigger before Oathing up a Thorny or Verdant Force. Or a friggin’ elf.

Tradewind-Prison: Well, I’d better come out fast, or at least be able to Waste enough lands and ‘Core/Scroll enough Birds to beat them to death.

Stasis: I went 2-0 vs. them last year by fetching every Lyrist and Ranger I could get my hands on. Now, I’ll have to draw them. Heh, that’s fair.

Secret Force: It’s all about the Cradle.

Turbo-Land: In the hands of someone who knows what they’re doing, it looks bad for me. Here’s hoping that a lot of guys pick it up the day before the tourney.

Three-Deuce: This friggin’ deck has everything! If Wasteland shows up on schedule, Thorny or the best fattie on Earth can do the rest, Swords and Spectral Lyn notwithstanding.

Stompy: Walls, walls, and more walls. And Spike Weaver doesn’t seem too bad either, although that friggin’ Winter Orb is annoying as all hell. Oh yeah, Monkeys.

Draw-Go/Forbidian: Like Oscar Tan said,”They can’t counter everything.” And Choke has to resolve someday.

Pox: Who plays Po besides me? Oh, Sean McKeown. Seems like a bad matchup for me, so why would I bother to test it?

Ponza: Annoying. Very annoying. But not the worst matchup I could hope for. If the Ranger can live, well, neato for me.

Tomb Raider and other recursive-Malka types: Looks bad. Please, no one plays these kinds of decks. Thanks.

Unless I missed one or two, it looks like not one person at Worlds played The Life Deck from last year. That’s weird. Not one. But about thirty guys played Secret Force. Booya. The funny thing is that a bunch of them had this land distribution:

13 Forest 4 Wasteland 3 Gaea’s Cradle

Hey, I told you guys last year that this is not enough land. Or didn’t you get that far in my report?

This now concludes the”Man, I’m tired of reading about IBC” segment of this article.

Oh yeah, Worlds.

Here’s hoping they print Turian’s Standard deck in the Worlds Set. Then I can ask him to sign the deck. Heh, get it? The cards already come signed!




Zvi’s Invitational deck that I paid over three hundred beans for has yet to see much play. Uh oh, Zvi did use two Wall of Roots and about si Forests. That is so def – now I can put them right into Friggin’ Green Redu and intimidate those who aren’t intimidated by me alone.

Is that Zvi’s signature?



Backup plan:

Is that Zvi’s signature?


Big deal.



Lava Zombie is a good card. Seriously.

Here you go creating another fable.

Now, if I could just find my damned keys…

John Friggin’ Rizzo