Wait For It… a blog by Andy Ross

Competitive Napkin Folding

Posted on July 6, 2010

This is an official announcement: I, Andy Ross, am returning to the world of competitive napkin folding.

Many of my fans may be shocked by this. When I retired from competition, I vowed never to return to professional napkin folding. At the time those were my intentions. But, times have changed.

There are still the same problems I spoke out against inside the World Napkin Folding Federation—rampant commercialism, lack of standardized linen thread count, little to no safety oversight. But, today this grand sport faces a bigger danger. That danger’s name is Freddy “Creaser” Plimpton.

We’ve all seen his smug face on the jumbo screen. We’ve watched him prancing around onstage, showboating. Tell me, is a bright red cloth napkin appropriate for a family-friendly competition? Freddy Plimpton seems to think so.

The hubris this man displays—it’s like something out of Sophocles. Not only does he pimp his line of “Creaser Brand Napkin Rings” in clear violation of WNFF sponsorship guidelines, but he dares use the WNFF logo on the packaging. That logo used to mean something noble and pure. I believe it still can.

Who is this “Creaser” Plimpton, anyway? Just some schmuck with a few swans and a napkin crown under his belt. Would he even recognize the great napkin folders of yore? Gus Hedge? Nellie Dinkels? Lon McSundry? These were professional napkinners of honor. These were gladiators.

When I was four years old, I saw Gus Hedge fold a standard white table napkin into a koala climbing a eucalyptus tree. He took one corner, wiggled it, and the koala waved. That’s when I knew this was the life for me. Freddie Plimpton wouldn’t know a koala if it fell in his lap, light-headed from the low nutritional value of eucalyptus.

So, I’ve decided leave behind my inspiration speaking tours and my series of napkin-folding mystery novels and return to professional napkin folding. “Creasor” Plimpton had better watch his back, because I haven’t spent these last five years simply resting on my laurels. I’ve been developing entirely new categories of napkin folds.

Next month, you can come watch me at the regional qualifier at the Red Roof Inn in Paramus. I’ll be in Conference Room B putting the finishing touches on my new masterpiece. Prepare yourself for ... The Linen Phoenix.