Every time there is a political Leaders' Debate, the minuscule minority that is the "politically engaged all-the-time" populace jokes that there should be a drinking game associated with the debate.
Followers of the Alberta General Election, rejoice - The National Post has actually produced one. Seriously.
Watch for myself, Dave Cournoyer and Jeff Hank to be live-blogging on the Global website during the Leaders' Debate, which runs from 6:30 to 8:00 on Thursday night.
I'm not calling it the "All Leaders' Debate", as Glenn Taylor of the Alberta Party has been excluded on the basis that his party did not have any MLA's at dissolution who had been elected as Alberta Party candidates. Taylor is making lemonade from the situation, and will be responding to the debate, in real-time, on his party's website.
In terms of the debate itself, expect fireworks, but no knock-outs. These leaders will all be too well prepared to allow themselves to be taken seriously off-message.
Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith is playing the "lowering expectations" game, pointing out that her opponents have all been MLA's and have political debate experience. The reality, though, is that this will be an exercise in televised messaging as much as anything else - and Smith, as a former television journalist, should be the MOST comfortable person on-stage Thursday night. If she doesn't clearly distinguish herself as the winner, it will be a major disappointment.