I had much fun going to these a few years ago, when I rediscovered the cube after a 20+ year break from when I used to do it in high school (way back in the early 80s).
I got to where I could average around 30-35 seconds on the 3x3x3, which was decent but never enough to move me beyond the first round. After a while, I realized that if I wanted to get better I was going to have to put a *lot* of time into it. I was more interested in doing other things. Like writing!
But if you're in San Francisco Sunday, go by the Exploratorium and check out the competition. It's one of the most marvelously nerdy things you can imagine, and a lot of fun.