Sophie Pagès

Bonjour, Judges!  This week, we feature a judge from Grenoble, France: L2 Sophie Pagès! Sophie obtained her L1 certification in March 2010, and passed her L2 test in June 2012!

Why did you become a judge?
When I started to play, during Alara, some players around me availed themselves of the fact that I was a beginner, and more than that, a beginner girl playing Magic, and tried to make me believe wrong stories, like you could activate a planeswalker’s ability as an instant, or give a color to lands. I really hate injustice, so I wanted to change this attitude around me, to help young players.

sophieOccupation: I help people with disabilities at university.

Favorite card: SoFI (Sword of Fire and Ice), for the name, of course 🙂 Besides that, my first favorite card was Cruel Ultimatum, played in 5cc. It can do everything, you can control the game with your deck, and your opponent just fears this card that makes you win.

Least favorite card: All the fun cards. Magic is a serious thing :p

Favorite format: Draft

Commander general: I tried to play Commander with Doran, the Siege Tower, but I really didn’t like the format, and there are no players in my town.

Favorite non-Magic Game: I love board games, so my “favorite” changes every month, I think. For now, it’s Lewis and Clark. Or the video game The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, that I just bought 🙂

Best tournament result: I win every game in my kitchen.

Random fact about yourself: My eyes change colors when I’m angry or sad, from almost black, to brown with yellow or green.

Tell us your favorite judge story.
I think this is both my favourite and my most embarrassing story!

I was about to play the National All Star, a French Cup in Standard and draft. But there were a lot of players, so they ask me if I could help as a judge. We were all young L2 judges, and we had to manage this really big tournament with all our knowledge. We ran all week-end long because we didn’t expect that many players, we didn’t know how to manage 150 people drafts, and the most experienced judge between us got the flu.

I was not judge-dressed; I had really big heels, a small dress, and someone gave me a sweaty XXL judge shirt.  In 2 hours, my shoes were broken and I had to judge without shoes, in a miniskirt with a too large T-shirt. But players were happy and this was the best reward. The team was excellent, we had a lot of fun, and I loved the experience we all gained together. Sophie at a prerelease

How has being a judge influenced your non-Magic life?
I think the most radical changes are about organization. When I wake up in the morning, I take my breakfast reading the 20 posts of the night from JudgeApps. When I go to bed, I read the French judge forum, or write in it. My weekends are organised around GP’s, so I have to deal with alternating custody of my daughter to take her the weekends when I’m not in GP’s.

My big couple discussions are not about money or a new fridge, but around difficult questions in rules and policies.

You were nominated for your work on a broad range of Judge projects. Can you share some stories about those projects and how you started working on them?
Sophie - GPWhen I started to read the French rules, a few months after I started playing, I found them really old. Some terms didn’t exist anymore for several years (like “misery” instead of mulligan), so I started to translate them at home, all by myself. It was a big job, but I was really not afraid. But I learned a little later that a project started to update the rules in French, so I gave up.

But when I passed level 2, I discovered a lot of projects where I could help, and I started to be in the Cranial Insertion translation team. I translated the judge classes to help my L1 candidates. In a few months, I was in the translation team of the Wiki, the MJM. I started translating Knowledge Pool on the French forum, writing a French newsletter, being a part of the textbook project and trying to help young judges to be up to date with the rules or the policy by posting rules questions or situations on the forum or making my own Judge Booth for the local players. I really love it.

What motivates you to continue being a judge?
I started to be a judge to help players. But then I discovered a whole new world, with discussion, philosophy, friends, and travel.  I love to chat with other judges about some point of policy or rules that is not clear, sharing my experiences or learning from those of others judges.  I love to visit new countries, new cities. Trying to be better, learning every week about yourself and how to improve yourself is really challenging. And what I love the most is judging GP’s, with all the judges, tasks to do, being useful for so many players and having so much fun doing this.

Sophie - my friends judges for my wedding 2 months ago
“my friends (judges) for my wedding 2 months ago” (ed.: may have been longer than 2 months, at time of publication)

What’s the best part about your local Magic community?
I really love taking time with my community, with weekly drafts or mainly organizing big prereleases for my players. Challenges are organized, like puzzles (how to beat my opponent in one turn) or a Judge booth to help players know the rules better. Last year, we organized a big challenge with clues, and players had to find the secret message hidden in the Ravnica lands.

What is your favorite non-judging moment that happened with other judges?
I don’t have a special day, but I really enjoy days or weekends of conferences, where we did a lot of things like have discussions about policies or play all night long, visiting all together or being unable to sleep because of people snoring 😉 .

If you could chat with one person, real or fictional, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
Boris Vian, who was a French engineer, singer, trumpeter, mathematician, writer, poet… because he could do everything.

Two Truths and a Lie
Two of the following statements is true, and one is false. Figure out which!

1. I was a champion of Ghost Stories, the board game.
2. I used to sing “Queen of the Night” by Mozart.
3. I used to spend 3 weeks alone every year in the mountains with just food and a tent.


The answer to last week's Two Truths and a Lie...
 Adena Chernosky did not actually live in Philadelphia and graduate from Drexel University in 1995.  “I went to to Drexel for 3 years, then transferred to the University of Hartford, where I graduated in 1995 with a BM in Music Theater!”


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