Having been in Kick-Off once, I decided to share my expertise with Kick-Off-winning hopefuls so that they might succeed.*

Feel free to use any of these ideas:

It seems that the most well-liked acts are from indie bands that are popular enough to be recognized but not so popular to have lost their hipster appeal. So, if it’s not too late, get a group of reasonably well-liked, good-looking juniors (first-years aren’t well known enough; seniors have passed their prime (think Paul McCartney)) and form a band. Consider covering a Bon Iver song…in the style of Beirut! Extra points awarded for trombones, Dr. Seussaphones and ukeleles.

People like humor. Consider telling a joke or two. Do not tell jokes that aren’t funny, though. First ensure that the joke is funny by using science. Form a control group of people who do not hear your joke. See if they laugh. Next, form an experimental group that you tell the joke to. If they laugh significantly more than the control group, your joke may be worth telling.

Include tap dancing. Everyone loves tap dancing. See: “Billy Funk.”

Following the success of last year’s version of “Eye of the Tiger” with helium inhaled, consider experimenting with other pump-up songs and gases. How about “We Will Rock You” and chlorine? On second thought, no; Queen is a bad idea.

Include Billy Funk. Everyone loves Billy Funk. See: “Tap Dancing.”

The most important thing to remember about winning Kick-Off is that it won’t happen unless the judges like you. Of course, a small bribe might be in order. Careful, though – too large a bribe and they may think you’re desperate.

If you end up losing, don’t despair yet! With such an interlinked Mennonite community, you have a fair chance of unearthing a familial relationship between the winning act and a majority of the judges. Do a quick genealogy and cry nepotism! (Conversely, if your second cousin is on the judging panel, remind her how important family is.)

Good luck. If these ideas help you win, please share the money with me or I’ll sue.

*I have never won Kick-Off, but figure it can’t be that hard.