GP: Baltimore Day 2 Report

In the interest of preserving my streak of tournaments before which I got nowhere close to enough sleep, I stayed up way too late that Saturday night, reading event coverage and whatnot. Tim and I met up and drove to the site, and at 9:00 a.m. sharp, we were off.

Round 10 v. UB Control

Sigh.

This match was really good, even if it didn’t end well for me. Games one and two were brief affairs; I had a terrible draw in the first and a turn-three Thrun in the second. In game three, he resolved consecutive Ratchet Bombs and eventually blew them for enough value to put me pretty far behind. I managed to copy his Batterskull twice with Phyrexian Metamorphs, but once he was able to bounce and recast his every turn, I couldn’t really kill him. He found a Consecrated Sphinx, and it went all the way.

1-2, 7-3

Round 11 v. Zombies

A really frustrating one. Game one was ridiculous. He played a turn-four Obliterator and made two copies with Phantasmal Images, but my draw was so good that he needed to shrink them all with Black Sun’s Zeniths. We went back and forth for a while, and when the dust settled, I was left with a Bird and a million lands to his 1/1 Obliterator (no cards in hand for either of us). Life totals were 4-3, favoring him. I then drew five Forests in a row and that, as they say, was that.

Game two, he blew me out. Geralf’s Messenger is a realistic card.

0-2, 7-4

I destroyed my Round 12 Delver opponent in our first game. My phone was vibrating in my pocket the entire time, so after game one, I asked the guy if I could call a judge to get permission to return the call in case of an emergency situation. He consented, as did the judge, and I called back the unknown number. It turned out to be my boss, who was driving himself to the hospital in a panic. He has a chronic heart condition that has flared over the past few weeks; his heart had started racing at work, so he closed the store and left in a hurry. He had contacted the district manager and told him that I was on my way to take things over, even though I had taken the weekend off for the tournament.

I was in a mild state of shock while he yelled his status report into the phone, and I tried to protest that I was in the city and in no position to go to work. He told me that he had tried to get anybody else to come in, and I was the last resort. I didn’t really know how to respond, so I just told him I was on my way and hung up. I then told my opponent that I needed to concede, signed the slip in his favor, marked the “drop” box, handed it to the judge, packed up, and bolted for the door.

My teammates told me later that they saw me run out and thought that I was ragequitting hard or something. In all honesty, I was simply trying to get to my car before the tears came. Even though I was essentially out of the running for any meaningful result in the tournament, an early exit from my first GP Day Two sucked away all the joy in making the cut the day before. I couldn’t believe that I was actually walking away from the chance to play Sunday Magic. Eventually, as I drove home, I started to come to grips with the fact that my boss’s situation was much more serious than my own, and I felt ashamed that I would be so selfish, but it definitely still hurt.

I told myself that there will be other Day Twos, and I will certainly work toward that end.

All right, bedtime. Springing Forward tonight (thanks, Ben Franklin).

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