Do you have the Xmas beer pr0n photo fever yet? It is coming. Indeed, it is nigh. Right about now nigh in fact. A few prize packs have been pledged so far but we will hunt high and low for more. These are the rules. Because you can't have a good contest without strictly enforced arbitrary rules.
• We have now long forgotten the bad old days of unlimited photos per entrant. In 2008, we had over 500 entries. That was nuts. Children cried again from the lack of a parent's attention. In 2009, with the five photo max rule, we got it down to down to a sensible 185. So, like last year, I am limiting it but like last year I am upping it to eight photos per person. I want to see if that makes a difference.
• First rule as always: no photos of dishes of food with a beer next to it. They never win and they kinda make other people feel queasy. Your food is no better looking than your dog. Sorry to break the news.
• More photos of beer and snow as well as beer and babies. Photos of beer and snow look great. Beer in nature generally looks good. But beer and snow is a winner. Snow in Italy? Even better. Beer and babies can either look good or look weird. Stay away from weird, please.
• Again, pictures of beer and your pals all liquored up? More like the plate of food than snow. Not usually good. But you never know.
• There is a prize for the crappiest photo. It is a crappy prize.
• The contest opens on Friday, 18 November at noon eastern standard time, North America and goes to... what... Sunday December 11 at noon. More than three weeks. Over three weeks of art and prizes.
So, we will do our job beating the bushes for an international selection of prizes that will surprise and delight. I am the sole arbitrator of victory and the prizes get delivered directly from the giver... unless you have to go get the prize. Make sense? Let's hope we see some photos as great as the 2009 winner by Kim Reed of Rochester, New York.