I'm sure you all remember the blog post I wrote eight years ago in which I compared memory competitions to figure skating. Or at least the picture that followed it. It's interesting how things have changed since then. Back in 2007, "national standard" competitions with their shorter disciplines were still a bit of a novelty, the US championship was the only really different kind of memory tournament, and the XMT didn't exist even in people's wildest imagination.
The XMT, of course, is exactly the kind of free-skating thing I was burbling about eight years ago, and I'm pretty sure it now gets the general memory-athlete community more excited than the world memory championships do. But things like that and the Memoriad and the multiple other competitions going on (I haven't even mentioned the cool things happening in Los Angeles, been so wrapped up in Extremeness...) have all sort of combined into a really quite cool whole. The WMSC isn't as big a deal as it used to be when those were the only memory championships in the world, but while the world championship with its hour-long disciplines is still something people aspire to, it's not going to be swept aside. I like the balance we have right now!