So on Friday I celebrated a year as “The Machine.” One year since my first match and I still love doing this as much as I ever did. You’ve heard me wax poetic about my journey, but I really got to thinking about all the people who made this year as “Jeannine the Machine” so special and I had to say thank you.
Thank you current champ Dan Murrell. If I’m being honest, you’re the reason I fell in love with this game. I followed you from Screenjunkies into the Schmoedown. While I enjoyed the show as a casual watch for mostly the trivia, it wasn’t until seeing the build up and your gameplay from the Campea match, that I got so invested in the world of the Schmoedown. It has been an honor to even be in the same league as you.
Thank you Jay Washington. I’ve said it on numerous occasions. You saw how nervous I was and were right there as my voice when you literally didn’t have one of your own. You helped me find my mine and you were there for me when you were going through one of the toughest times of your life. I can never thank you enough for that.
Thank you Stacy Howard and Brianne Chandler. Seeing how much you put into the game was so inspiring. You brought it every time and excelled at every part of the competition. You also were a big inspiration in the kind of competitor I wanted to be. Stacy, even though I’m older, you always felt like a big sis, supporting me and showing me how it’s done. Brianne for always telling me you never saw me as a rookie which gave me so much confidence.
Thank you Kingsmen and World’s Finest. We were all rookies together that day and seeing your ridiculously hilarious match was probably the most fun I’ve had watching two teams compete. Thank you for being kind and making my first day so fun. Thank you Bonnie Somerville and Emma Fyffe, you ladies have made this league amazing from the early days to the current days and it was an honor to sit across the table from you.
To Mike Kalinowski and John Rocha, even as a fan, our twitter battles have become some of the funnest times I’ve had on the internet and has groomed me for all the character stuff and that goes into this and the shit talk still continues today, I just can’t resist poking the bear. I have so much respect for you guys and hope to accomplish half the amazing things you both have in this league. I know one day I’ll see you across the desk.
Thank you Andrew Ghai and Ben Bateman. You were kind enough to be on my friend’s show Fan Friction and I’ve followed you ever since. I aspired to even have a quarter of the impact you guys have had in the Schmoedown when I started and you showed me how to heel. To see how much you put into this game and how you love and respect the fans so much is a beautiful thing.
The Crusher, Rachel Cushing. Thank you for your perseverance. It can be difficult to be a lady in this league and what you’ve accomplished through the negativity has made me so proud to be a female in this game.
Thank you Jenn Sterger. I always felt a little left out seeing the other girls get dolled up by you. It was never an intentional thing of course. Just always felt too different to be a part of that. In NY you took the time to help me with my make up, may seem like a silly, small thing, but that and your encouraging words made me feel confident and beautiful and that was super special for me.
Thank you Ken Napzok for your kindness and for believing in me in this league and outside of it with my art, you just “get it” and that means the world to me.
Bibbiani, your creativity knows no bounds. I love your dedication. I’ve loved having you to talk entrances with. Probably one of the most humble to hold the belt, thank you for always making me feel like I can get there too and for all your support.
Thank you to my amazing friends, to name a few, Brandon Hanna, Rachel Silvestrini, Raul Rodriguez and Pat and Sarah Campbell for letting me crash on couches and being my biggest cheerleaders.
Thank you to the Smiths (Kristen And John) and the Campbells for giving me the best day in NY before my match, it made all the difference in my headspace.
Kristian and Mark Ellis. You guys took a chance on me and because of you I have had an incredible year. Thank you to all the amazing fans for a year’s worth of kind, encouraging messages, study sessions and support.
Thank you Mark Reilly and Kal. A hug from you Mark and a head in the lap from Kal made a day of taping matches that much more wonderful and I dedicate today’s article to you.
Here’s to another awesome year as The Machine!