The Daily Chess News Roundup Show

Sevan A. Muradian, International Arbiter and International Organizer, and Illinois Delegate, posted a link to a skit on The Daily Show on the USCF forum, without making any comment. (http://www.uschess.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=21282&sid=a4a1a47dac15766671e98aa586184c71)

For those who do not know, The Daily Show is a popular comedy show. I recall some years ago reading something about more young people obtaining news from Jon Stewart’s show than from what is now called “mainstream” news sources, such as the antiquated “big three,” ABC, NBC, and CBS, Cable News Network, and the “Fairly Unbalanced” FOX news network. After watching what passes for news on FOX who can blame them?

Someone using the handle “chessdad 64” in Chicago left this comment:

“I like the Daily Show a lot, but I thought this bit fell flat on its face. Rather than it’s usual clever, and creative insights, this piece relied upon the age old tired stereotypes that characterize chess culture (nerds, boredom, et al). The lameness of this sketch reflects upon the failure and laziness of the Daily Show’s writing staff as well as that of chess industrial complex in the US which has done nothing to effectively dispel the popular culture of these tired antiquated yarns.”

It has been my experience that some, if not most, of those in the chess world simply cannot understand how the players of the Royal game are perceived by those outside the world of chess. Perception is reality. For example, consider this headline from December 10, 2014, Half of Americans Don’t Want Their Sons Playing Football, Poll Shows (http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2014-12-10/bloomberg-politics-poll-half-of-americans-dont-want-their-sons-playing-football). The next headline informs us of which half:
Poll: Wealthy, College-Educated Less Likely to Want Kids to Play Football (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/sports/football-high/poll-wealthy-college-educated-less-likely-to-want-kids-to-play-football/).

Parents do not want their children maimed. This is the secondary headline in the latter article: “Women and elites in particular want to keep their boys off the gridiron.” Football is dying. It could be the game will still be played by those from the lower socioeconomic class, as is the case in boxing, but what has passed for football in this country has seen its heyday.

Chess people are quick to point out how many are playing chess these days. What they do not mention is the vast majority are children who are doing what they are told. When the children first begin to think for themselves and begin questioning, around puberty, they quit playing chess. Could the reason be they learn the perception of chess is that it is considered a strange game by the vast majority of the people in the world? Could it be the children realize there is much truth in the way chess is portrayed by the media? Could it be that many of the children want to be accepted by their peers rather than being ostracized for playing what is thought of as a “weird” game?

I laughed uproariously at the skit, especially the part about Rootin’ Tootin’ RasPootin’…Check it out for yourself here: http://thedailyshow.cc.com/videos/oxku1b/chess-news-roundup

Advertisements

The Connecticut Rebels

The Atlanta Kings drew the match with their Southern division rival, the Connecticut Dreadnoughts. If you are wondering what a team from the northern most region of yankee land is doing in the Southern division, you are not alone. The closest tie to the South would be that of the Dreadnoughts first board in the match with the Kings, Michael “Bubba” Rohde, and the fact that his parents resided in Atlanta back in the 1980’s. GM Rohde would visit, and played in at least one chess tournament that I recall, while here. During this time I played backgammon with Michael.

This reminds me of the Atlanta Braves being placed in the Western division of the National League when Major League Baseball expanded from twenty to twenty four teams in 1969. Because the owner of the Chicago Cubs, Philip K. Wrigley, balked at being placed in the Western division, ostensibly because the Cub fans would have to stay up late to watch the games from the west coast. Since Chicago is in the Central time zone there is a two hour difference. To placate Wrigley and continue the rivalry between the Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals, the MLB Commissioner, Bowie Kuhn, who lacked the cojones to stand up to Wrigley, allowed the Cubs and Cards to play in the eastern division while placing the Atlanta Braves and Cincinnati Reds in the Western division. This made absolutely no sense because both teams, the Braves and Reds, are in the Eastern time zone, meaning a three hour time difference, one more than the two hour difference between Chicago and St. Louis and the left coast.

Baltimore is also a member of the Southern division. Although Maryland is considered a yankee state, a case can be made that Baltimore belongs in the Southern division, or at least more of a case than can be made with regard to Connecticut. At least Maryland was considered a “border” state. The greatest Southern hero of the War Between For Southern Independence, John Wilkes Booth, was born in Maryland.

“The Baltimore riot of 1861 (also called the Pratt Street Riot and the Pratt Street Massacre) was a conflict that took place on April 19, 1861, in Baltimore, Maryland between Confederate sympathizers and members of the Massachusetts militia en route to Washington for Federal service. It is regarded by historians as the first bloodshed of the American Civil War.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baltimore_riot_of_1861)

“Spring, 1861. The American Civil War erupts and Baltimore finds itself at the crossroads of the North and the South. A passageway to the North and a border state to the South, Maryland was home to both Unionists and Southern sympathizers. Maryland was a slave state at the beginning of the war; however, free African Americans made up a quarter of Baltimore‚Äôs population.” (http://baltimore.org/guides-interests/civil-war)

“On April 19, 1861, the first blood of the American Civil War is shed when a secessionist mob in Baltimore attacks Massachusetts troops bound for Washington, D.C. Four soldiers and 12 rioters were killed.” (http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/first-blood-in-the-civil-war)

Elvis Presley – An American Trilogy – I wish I was in Dixieland (High Quality)