I WAS THERE . . . U.S. Air Guitar Championships @ Brooklyn Bowl, 4/9/10

Your Winner: Ricky Stinkfingers Photo by Creative Time's CYNTHIA PRINGLE

Fret-jumping, kneeling solos, and occasionally lighting the guitar on fire; these are the signs of a captivating rock god. Yet in the era of Guitar Hero, there are poseurs who fancy themselves ‘experts’ of colorful buttons and plastic whammy bars (“It’s a tremolo arm,” they might dare). So what happens when you take away the talent AND the instrument? US Air Guitar Championships 2010.

Let’s cover the particulars: A handful of sweaty contestants vying for a seat in the second round for a real shot at the New York title and a chance to represent the Big Apple, the fulfilling scent of Blue Ribbon grub wafting over the lanes of Brooklyn Bowl, BK’s finest brews on tap, and three “celebrity judges” (yes, there are criteria) even though real celebrities like Drew Barrymore and Mac-tastic beau Justin Long were in the house.

To make a long story short, this year was thin on talent and big on hair; chest hair. There’s nothing more distracting than a shag rug framed by a vest originally designed for a small child. The good news is that a winner was chosen and he is aptly nicknamed, “Ricky Stinkfingers.” With all that stage presence and swagger, it is no surprise that Mr. Stinkfingers is a Wall Street guy; making post-trading hours dreams come true one riff at a time.

Nicole Velasco

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