NCFCA memories part 1: Timing TP

It seems so unreal for it to be over. I competed in the NCFCA for three years, and they were the best 3 years I’ve ever known. The next 3 posts (this is one of the 3) will lend themselves to recapitulating and remembering my treasured experience in the league. After this fairly trivial, albeit fun, collection of TP poems, look for a post on Nationals (with slideshow), and a final reflection on the “end of all things” (although it’s not, really).

In 2009, I began a personal annual tradition of composing a poem while timing a team policy round… a poem ABOUT timing TP. Here, for the first time, I present all three of them to you at once. (disclaimer: You will ONLY appreciate/understand this if you have prior experience with the NCFCA.)

Timing TP 1 (from the India year)

Someone yelled out “We need timers right now!”
I felt obliging, so I went, and now-
I’m sitting listening to each of them speak.
All I can say is that I don’t like TP.

H1B visas are flying around.
They’re confusing me with evidence, this is such a long round.
L visas, O visas, here come more!
I just can’t wait until I get out the door.

Rebuttals have started- we’re half-way through.
Only 20 more minutes, but there’s prep time too.
I should be flowing, but shhhh.. don’t tell!
Poetic timers don’t time so well.


I’d really much rather be hanging out
With friends in the hallways, but I can’t get out!
I’m trapped as a timer- what have I done?
I’ve deserted LD: I deserve to be shunned.


It’s not that I don’t like these teams- I do!
Everyone’s amazing- it’s just too cool.
Debating is awesome, they’re so…. impressive.
It’s just that TP isn’t very…. expressive.


Timing TP 2 (the environmental year… most all of Region 4 knows that this poem was later turned into a song by Owen, resulting in some wording changes [and some down-right additions! =)] but this is the original version, straight from my flowpad.)

You talk of the public of U.S.A. soil,
And do you somehow help them by messing with oil?
‘Cause there’s always the threat you might blow up the earth.
And would that help the country? Um… I think it might hurt.

Oh, policies, evidence, long, boring quotes…
The best things y’all have are those cool sticky notes.
Topolvancycality- that’s my new word
To tag all the arguments that seem absurd.

I’d go in for love vs. beauty or such,
But your words that drone on make my thoughts stray to lunch.
Forgive me the question, “Are we almost done?”
I’m sorry, but LD is so much more fun.

I do think it’s funny how hard the aff tries
To hand you their evidence and not let it slide
Off the podium, onto the carpeted floor,
But extending the round doesn’t make my heart soar.

Oh, you can drink ethanol and bomb nuclear plants,
Pay homage to kittens and hate those who shan’t
For the health of the physical earth which we see.
But I’d still prefer to be timing LD.


Timing TP 3 (this year… aka “Russia”)

Perhaps there ought to be concern
For scientists that are infirm,
But IPP won’t interest me.
I wish I’d gone to time LD.

“Proliferation” has been said
At least twelve times while we’ve been led
Through impacts and optional threats
From W-P-M scientists.

What shall I say about your words
That tell me things I’ve never heard?
I’m just a timer- I have no say
in policies or Russia’s fate.
But I don’t mind, ’cause I don’t care.
Your world is big, but I don’t live there.

I’m proud of your smooth speaking style
But you’ve been talking for a while….
Quoting names like “Flausemburg”
And… I don’t know how to say that word.

Experts and analogies
Addressing new technologies
Sound smart, but they don’t interest me.
I wish I’d gone to time LD.

What shall I say about your words
That tell me things I’ve never heard?
I’m just a timer- I have no say
in policies or Russia’s fate.
But I don’t mind, ’cause I don’t care.
Your world is big, but I don’t live there.

[intense, eh? A Nationals blog post was really due before this, I know. And it’s coming, but I have to finish the slideshow first, hence the delay.]


3 responses

  1. Oh Grace! You have never done TP so you wouldn’t know. 😀
    Great poems!

    June 28, 2011 at 4:25 pm

  2. It’s a memorable way to document the resolutions for sure. Next year while judging TP, the debaters will think you are diligently flowing the round, while in actuality you could be writing a ditty about criminal justice. (Now *that* could be extremely amusing…both the situation and the words to the song.) 🙂

    Maybe I can stir up some Gilbert & Sullivan-style creative juice on the last one.

    June 28, 2011 at 10:21 pm

  3. Ha ha. This was rather epic. That would be double plus good if you wrote your comments out in poem style when you judged. 😀 I would love to see a ballot like that. but… they may not appreciate your poetic brilliance… Whatever, they can get over it…. like we had to. 🙂

    Just another crazy, overstimulated, alumni judge…

    June 30, 2011 at 2:16 pm

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