Rock, Paper, Scissors Champ Reveals Strategy

Sean Sears

For the win: Sean "Wicked Fingers" Sears puts the rock on Julie "Bulldog" Crossley. hide caption

itoggle caption

Rock, paper, scissors, that time-tested dispute resolution technique, isn't just for settling schoolyard arguments anymore.

Even though it's not a recognized area of Olympic competition — the IOC is so shortsighted! — rock-paper-scissors is still going to be represented this summer in Beijing in the first ever championships of the sport, pastime, activity, or whatever it is.

And the U.S. is sending its champion, Sean Sears. Sears won the U.S. national championship in Las Vegas last weekend, and, though he's ready to rumble, he's still a little surprised.

His entrance to the competition was a fluke. "I was out with some friends," Sears says. "I entered on a whim, and next thing I know, I have $50,000."

He tries not to think about it too much, and he doesn't study his opponents, because if he does, they might change their tactics or patterns. Sears says you have to live in the moment, to interpret every nuance of an opponent's behavior to figure out how to win.

"It's more than just luck," he says. "You've got to be able to read what your opponent is doing."



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.