Have you ever walked into a room where you were about to compete, and then stood off the side and waited to give your speech? You probably have. Or for the debaters out there, have you ever waltzed over to the side of the room that corresponds with your side of the resolution (p.s. I used to know without even thinking that the affirmative always chills to my left, their right. Then I started debate and I guess I was filling my head with different, sometimes less-essential elements, namely how long the 2NR is and the importance of being polite in Cross-Examination and remembering to write my name on the board and the various ways I could force myself to faint so as to avoid the 1AR when it's just one of those rounds, and other such bits of information, resulting in the sad truth that I consistently to this day forget who is supposed to stand where. Yea. I don't know if the directions I gave you before were correct. As credible as bloggers are, you probably shouldn't quote me on that one...)
... where was I? Oh yea, have you ever waltzed over to the side of the room that corresponds with your side of the resolution and started unpacking your giant debate bag for the next twelve minutes? All the time, right? And then you look over at your judges, or the judge comes capering into the room behind you, and you think, waiiiitt a second. Are you supposed to be judging me? And evidently, they are. (note: this author would never publicly advocate biased-judging, or any other breaking of Stoa rules. Except for possibly... never mind. I'll tell you later. Maybe.)
I've had various judges of questionable knowledgability of myself judge me multiple times. I guess they're able to put any and all biases behind them, such as that one judge that I've now had four times in three different speeches. The highest he ever gave me was fourth, which he then crossed-out and switched to 5th & Below. It seems that he's really good at not playing favorites. Or he's not and he just doesn't like me. Apparently being friends on Facebook doesn't mean anything these days. When did that happen?
I guess the best kind of time a friend of yours can judge you would have to be at a tournament where it doesn't matter and you don't have tab all mad at you guys (you know how tab is. They're great, but they adhere to certain rules and stuff). Perhaps at a camp tournament, or even a Round Robin. In such non-qualifying scenarios, I've seen clubmates judging clubmates, friends judging friends, Parli partners judging Parli partners, ect. It seems that when it comes to practice tournaments, generally my friends feel that they are still too biased in my favor and therefore do not judge me. Not sure if I should be grateful. Probably yes. Anyway.
It is kind of fun to have judges you know. Maybe you feel a little more at ease, as if you're just giving a speech for a friend back at club. Maybe you feel a little more bold, so you make tons of jokes because you know your judge and you know he'll laugh. Maybe you'll try to bribe them beforehand, which I have never ever ever done like ever but it didn't work anyway so don't tell on me. Remember, friends are fun, not food. Or something. Judges are friends, not food? That kind of works.
You're homeschooled, and I'm judging you right now.