Beads of sweat appear on foreheads as anxious eyes stare and try to get into the mindset of the opponent — one false move could give a competitor the edge that he needs to throw a fatal move. This mind game isn’t a duel. Or chess. Or even poker. It’s rock-paper-scissors.

 

This weekend, 10 teams will show their best moves at The Pabst Blue Ribbon Philadelphia Rock Paper Scissors City League Championship Series (take a breath) while competing for a $1,000 prize.

 

Philly is the only city in the U.S. that has an organized “league,” with a series of tournaments and championships every spring since 2006.

 

Danny Gerber — or El Toro Papaya, as he’s known in RPS circles — doesn’t want to give away too much: “A good player would never reveal his strategy,” he says. He also notes that it’s a struggle to truly throw randomly, so it’s best to watch what other competitors do and then try to predict what they are going to throw.


“Everyone has a different approach, and they change that depending on the person they are competing against,” says Shawn Ring, executive director of the league.


Sounds pretty secretive, but El Toro will tell us this: There have been a lot of rocks thrown this season.