GM Aman Hambleton vs Deepak Aaron

Last night was spent viewing the Chess games from the current US Masters tournament being contested in Charlotte, North Carolina. Earlier I had commented that it was strange to see fellow Georgian Deepak Aaron

https://www.wolfchess.org/

on board six facing Grandmaster Aman Hambleton

International master Aman Hambleton needs one more GM norm to become a grand master. In March, 2017 he vowed to stop shaving until he achieves this goal. (https://news.stlpublicradio.org/arts/2017-12-07/on-chess-the-quest-to-grandmaster-title-at-the-st-louis-invitational)

on board six because he was the only untitled player among the leaders. On had to go down to board twenty six to find the next untitled player. Deepak had the black pieces, which lowered the prospect of success. Music from The Hearts of Space (https://v4.hos.com/this-week/program) was playing as I surfed… Then the surfin’ stopped as the focus went to that game only as I sat there transfixed by the game. The commentary was left untouched as I began living vicariously while rooting for Deepak. I was so into it while making sounds like, “YES!”, or, “Oh No, Mr. Bill”… If and when Deepak would make a move of which I approved (and not all of my chosen moves would be approved) a fist would be clenched that would be pumped. Only one who has sat across from a titled player can understand how difficult it is to score even a draw against a Grandmaster, or one of GM strength. Not once did I turn on the analysis, and I have still not yet gone over the game with annotations, but hope to do so later today.

GM Ben Finegold and Deepak Aaron moving pieces: https://www.wolfchess.org/

It is my pleasure to present the moves of this extremely hard fought Chess game. If you would like to see the annotations by Stockfish please click onto this link (https://lichess.org/broadcast/2022-charlotte-us-masters/round-5/jOrLgMFv)

GM Aman Hambleton vs NM Deepak Aaron
2022 US Masters
Round 5
ECO E32 Nimzo-Indian Defense: Classical Variation

1.d4 e6 2. c4 Nf6 3. Nc3 Bb4 4. Qc2 O-O 5. Nf3 c5 6. dxc5 Na6 7. g3 Nxc5 8. Bg2 Nce4 9. O-O Bxc3 10. bxc3 Qa5 11. Nd4 d5 12. cxd5 exd5 13. c4 Qc5 14. Bb2 Qxc4 15. Qxc4 dxc4 16. Rfc1 Bd7 17. Rxc4 Rac8 18. Rb4 b5 19. Bxe4 a5 20. Bxh7+ Kxh7 21. Rb3 a4 22. Rd3 b4 23. f3 Rc4 24. Bc1 Bc8 25. Bg5 Nd5 26. Bd2 Ba6 27. Be1 Rfc8 28. Kf2 R4c5 29. Rdd1 Nc3 30. Bxc3 Rxc3 31. Rab1 R8c4 32. Rd2 Rc1 33. Rxc1 Rxc1 34. Rb2 Rc4 35. Ke3 a3 36. Rc2 Kg6 37. h4 f5 38. g4 fxg4 39. fxg4 Kf6 40. Rd2 Ke5 41. Nf3+ Ke6 42. Nd4+ Kd5 43. h5 Rc3+ 44. Kf4 Kc4 45. e3 Rc1 46. Rh2 Rf1+ 47. Ke5 Kd3 48. g5 Rg1 49. Kf4 Rf1+ 50. Ke5 Rg1 51. Ne6 Bc4 52. h6 gxh6 53. gxh6 Rg8 54. h7 Rh8 55. e4 Bxa2 56. Rxa2 Rxh7 57. Nf4+ Kc4 58. Nd5 Ra7 59. Nxb4 Kxb4 60. Kd6 Kb3 61. Ra1 Kb2 62. Re1 Ra6+ 63. Kd7 Ra4 64. e5 Rd4+ 65. Kc7 Rc4+ 66. Kd7 a2 67. e6 Rd4+ 68. Ke7 a1=R 69. Rxa1 Kxa1 70. Kf7 Rf4+ 71. Kg7 Re4 72. Kf7 Rxe6 73. Kxe6 Kb2 1/2-1/2

13…Qc5 is a TN. SF prefers 13…Bd7

Bogdan Lalic (2500) vs Margareta Muresan (2215)
Event: GMA Baleares op
Site: Palma de Mallorca Date: ??/??/1989
Round: 1
ECO: E32 Nimzo-Indian, classical variation
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 O-O 5.Nf3 c5 6.dxc5 Na6 7.g3 Nxc5 8.Bg2 Nce4 9.O-O Bxc3 10.bxc3 Qa5 11.Nd4 d5 12.cxd5 exd5 13.c4 Bd7 14.cxd5 Rac8 15.Qb3 Ba4 16.Qa3 Rc3 17.Nb3 Bxb3 18.Qxa5 1-0
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?gid=2300735

Anna Ushenina (2501) vs Humpy Koneru (2607)
Event: SportAccord Blitz Women 2013
Site: Beijing CHN Date: 12/16/2013
Round: 24.6
ECO: E32 Nimzo-Indian, classical variation
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.Qc2 O-O 5.Nf3 c5 6.dxc5 Na6 7.g3 Nxc5 8.Bg2 Nce4 9.O-O Bxc3 10.bxc3 Qa5 11.Nd4 d5 12.cxd5 exd5 13.c4 Bd7 14.cxd5 Qxd5 15.Bb2 Rac8 16.Qb3 Qxb3 17.axb3 a6 18.e3 Rc7 19.Rfc1 Rfc8 20.Rxc7 Rxc7 21.b4 Nd6 22.Nb3 Nfe4 23.Bd4 Bc6 24.f3 Nf6 25.e4 Nb5 26.Be5 Re7 27.Bb2 Rd7 28.Bf1 Kf8 29.Kf2 Ne8 30.Ke3 Re7 31.Na5 Rc7 32.Rc1 f6 33.h4 Ke7 34.f4 Ned6 35.Bd3 Bd7 36.Rxc7 Nxc7 37.e5 fxe5 38.Bxe5 Nd5+ 39.Kd2 Nxb4 40.Bxh7 b6 41.Nb3 Nc4+ 42.Kc3 Nxe5 43.Kxb4 a5+ 44.Kc3 Ng4 45.Nd4 Kd6 46.Be4 Nf6 47.Bf3 b5 48.Be2 Kc5 49.Nb3+ Kb6 50.Bd3 a4 51.Nd4 Ka5 52.Nc2 Nd5+ 53.Kd4 Nf6 54.Kc5 Be8 55.f5 Nd7+ 56.Kd6 b4 57.g4 b3 58.Nd4 b2 59.g5 a3 60.Nb3+ Kb4 61.Nd4 a2 62.f6 gxf6 63.gxf6 Nxf6 64.Ke7 a1=Q 65.Nc2+ Kc3 66.Nxa1 bxa1=Q 67.Bf5 Bc6 68.Kxf6 Kc4+ 69.Kg6 Qg1+ 70.Kf6 Qd4+ 71.Kg5 Qe5 72.Kg6 Be4 73.Bxe4 Qxe4+ 74.Kg5 Kd5 75.h5 Ke6 76.h6 Qf5+ 0-1 (https://www.365chess.com/game.php?gid=387755)

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFFX_uUtPSsc-_UD1VRsaCg?view_as=subscriber

Heaven Help Us All

Marjorie Taylor Greene is running for re-election for the state’s 14th Congressional district of the Great State of Georgia and she is expected to win., which should tell you much about the 14th Congressional district she represents. To many Georgians, including this one, she is an embarrassment. Her usual countenance is that of someone who is mad as hell and not gonna take it anymore.

This writer has only just now finished reading the article being presented in its entirety. The writer of the article is “Maureen Dowd, winner of the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary and author of three New York Times best sellers, became an Op-Ed columnist in 1995.

WASHINGTON — Are we ready for our new Republican overlords?

Are we ready for an empowered Marjorie Taylor Greene?

Are we ready for a pumped-up, pistol-packing Lauren Boebert?

“How many AR-15s do you think Jesus would have had?” Boebert asked a crowd at a Christian campaign event in June. I’m going with none, honestly, but her answer was, “Well, he didn’t have enough to keep his government from killing him.”

The Denver Post pleaded: “We beg voters in western and southern Colorado not to give Rep. Lauren Boebert their vote.”

The freshman representative has recently been predicting happily that we’re in the end times, “the last of the last days.” If Lauren Boebert is in charge, we may want to be in the end times. I’m feeling not so Rapturous about the prospect.

And then there’s the future first female president, Kari Lake, who lulls you into believing, with her mellifluous voice, statements that seem to emanate from Lucifer. She’s dangerous because, like Donald Trump, she has real skills from her years in TV. And she really believes this stuff, unlike Trump and Kevin McCarthy, who are faking it.

As Cecily Strong said on “Saturday Night Live” last weekend, embodying Lake, “If the people of Arizona elect me, I’ll make sure they never have to vote ever again.”

Speaking of “Paradise Lost,” how about Ron DeSantis? The governor of Florida, who’s running for a second term, is airing an ad that suggests that he was literally anointed by God to fight Democrats. God almighty, that’s some high-level endorsement.

Republicans seem to be surging heading into November, with Democrats struggling to break through, as voters turn their focus from abortion to crime and inflation. Even if the polls are as off, as pollsters fear, all signs seem to be pointing toward a strong showing for the G.O.P.

For months now, Times Opinion has been covering how we got here. Chloe Maxmin and Canyon Woodward argued that Democrats abandoned rural America. Alec MacGillis traced how the party ignored the economic decline of the Midwest. And Michelle Cottle described the innovative Republican ground game in South Texas.

Opinion has also been identifying the candidates who could define the future of their party. Sam Adler-Bell captured the bleak nationalism of Blake Masters, the Arizona Republican challenging Senator Mark Kelly. Christopher Caldwell described the transformation of J.D. Vance, the venture capitalist from Ohio who went from Trump critic to proud member of the MAGA faithful. Michelle Goldberg traveled to Washington state to profile Joe Kent, a burgeoning star on the right.

And throughout this election cycle, Opinion has held discussions with groups of experts – hosted by Frank Bruni, Ross Douthat and others – that have followed the season’s twists and turns, from reviewing the primary landscape to a Democratic backlash against the Dobbs decision which gave way to a Republican surge in the fall. And we paused to consider the mysteries of polls and the politically homeless along the way.

Much to our national shame, it looks like these over-the-top and way, way, way out-of-the mainstream Republicans — and the formerly normie and now creepy Republicans who have bent the knee to the wackos out of political expediency — are going to be running the House, maybe the Senate and certainly some states, perhaps even some that Joe Biden won two years ago.

And it looks as if Kevin McCarthy will finally realize his goal of becoming speaker, but when he speaks, it will be Marjorie Taylor Greene, Jim Jordan and Lauren Boebert doing the spewing. It will be like the devil growling through Linda Blair in “The Exorcist” — except it will be our heads spinning.

Welcome to a rogue’s gallery of crazy: Clay Higgins, who’s spouting conspiracy theories about Paul Pelosi, wants to run the House Homeland Security Committee; Paul Gosar, whose own family has begged Arizonans to eject him from Congress, will be persona grata in the new majority.

In North Carolina, Bo Hines, a Republican candidate for the House, wants community panels to decide whether rape victims are able to get abortions or not. He’s building on Dr. Oz’s dictum that local politicians should help make that call. Even Oprah turned on her creation, Dr. Odd.

J.D. Vance, the Yale-educated, former Silicon Valley venture capitalist and author of “Hillbilly Elegy,” who called Trump “America’s Hitler” in 2016, before saluting him to gain public office, could join the Senate in January. Talk about American Elegy.

Even though he wrote in his best seller that Yale Law School was his “dream school,” he now trashes the very system that birthed him. Last year, he gave a speech titled “The Universities Are the Enemy”: His mother-in-law is a provost at the University of California San Diego.

It’s disturbing to think of Vance side by side with Herschel Walker.

Walker was backed by Mitch McConnell, who countenanced an obviously troubled and flawed individual even if it meant degrading the once illustrious Senate chamber.

Overall, there are nearly 300 election deniers on the ballot, but they will be all too happy to accept the results if they win.

People voting for these crazies think they’re punishing Biden, Barack Obama and the Democrats. They’re really punishing themselves.

These extreme Republicans don’t have a plan. Their only idea is to get in, make trouble for President Biden, drag Hunter into the dock, start a bunch of stupid investigations, shut down the government, abandon Ukraine and hold the debt limit hostage.

Democrats are partly to blame. They haven’t explained how they plan to get a grip on the things people are worried about: crime and inflation. Voters weren’t hearing what they needed to hear from Biden, who felt morally obligated to talk about the threat to democracy, even though that’s not what people are voting on.

As it turns out, a woman’s right to control her body has been overshadowed by uneasiness over safety and economic security.

To top it off, Trump is promising a return. We’ll see if DeSantis really is the chosen one. In Iowa on Thursday night, Trump urged the crowd to “crush the communists” at the ballot box and said that he was “very, very, very” close to deciding to “do it again.”

Trump, the modern Pandora, released the evil spirits swirling around us — racism, antisemitism, violence, hatred, conspiracy theories, and Trump mini-mes who should be nowhere near the levers of power.

Heaven help us.

Grandmaster Daniel Naroditsky Is The New York Times New Chess Columnist

Meet The Times’s New Chess Columnist

For Daniel Naroditsky, a career in the royal game may not be as lucrative as one at a hedge fund, but he is exactly where he wants to be.

Daniel Naroditsky at his home in Charlotte, N.C.Credit…Travis Dove for The New York Times

By Deb Amlen
Published June 12, 2022

Daniel Naroditsky is a chess grandmaster, the highest title given to competitors by the International Chess Federation, and he has used that talent to parlay it into a career. In addition to working as a commentator, author and chess tutor, he will be publishing his first chess puzzle on Monday in The New York Times.

Mr. Naroditsky settles his 6-foot-2 frame into a chair at his home in Charlotte, N.C., so we can chat over Google Meet. He is sipping an iced tea and is eager to talk, especially if the conversation has anything to do with chess.

We chat for a while about mundane subjects to get to know each other, and I learn that he loves spicy food and horror movies. He is also a sports fanatic, particularly when it comes to basketball. He is devoted to the Golden State Warriors and says that he never misses a game.

The first thing you notice about Mr. Naroditsky is how amiable he is. He smiles easily and likes to explain the topics we talk about thoroughly. It is important to him that he communicates effectively, so that I can come away from our chat with everything I need.

One of his private chess students, Ryan Amburgy of Tulsa, Okla., said that this quality was what made him a good teacher. Mr. Amburgy, who is 18, has been studying with Mr. Naroditsky since 2019.

“His knowledge of chess is incredible,” Mr. Amburgy said in an email, “and he is able to explain concepts in ways that are easy to understand and put into practice. He also has an amazing sense of humor, which makes the learning process fun.”

All of the people interviewed for this article — including Mr. Naroditsky’s mother, Lena Schuman of San Mateo, Calif. — agreed on this point: He has a unique ability to break ideas down into palatable chunks for those who want to learn more but see the game as impenetrable.

It’s really not that opaque, he insisted in the interview, but there are a few personality traits that help a player polish the game.

“You need extreme patience,” he said, “because, more so than in any other game, you’re going to suck for a while.”

Mr. Naroditsky set up a position on a chess board in his home office in June.Credit…Travis Dove for The New York Times

Persistence also helps when someone is in training. “I don’t know if this is a personality trait,” Mr. Naroditsky continued, “but if you want to get good at the game, you have to have the willingness to do the same thing over and over and over again.”

“You have to be very goal-oriented because of that,” he added. “Sometimes, all that sustains you is knowing where you want to be.”

Mr. Naroditsky said that the best players had highly analytical and logical minds. Skilled chess players can see several moves ahead, and that’s where the logic comes in.

“My opponent goes there,” he demonstrated, looking at the ceiling as if he were really calculating his next move. “That means that I have to go here because of this, this and this.”

Most important, however, is a love for chess. “Even at my level,” Mr. Naroditsky said, “I can still discover beautiful things about the game every single time I train, teach, play or am a commentator at a tournament.”

That quality comes across strongly to others. “Danya unabashedly oozes love for the game,” said Robert Hess, a fellow grandmaster and a commentator for Chess.com, using Mr. Naroditsky’s nickname. “You can’t fake that. That authenticity is a magnet for chess fans who regard Danya’s commentary as must-see TV. When a variation excites him, he enthusiastically shows the line (even if it contains a blunder) and the viewers latch on to that enthusiasm.

“He’s the perfect blend of edutainment,” Mr. Hess continued. “Danya dispenses nuggets of information that will help you improve while also entertaining the masses with his spot-on impressions of Garry Kasparov.”

Growing Up to Be a Grandmaster

Mr. Naroditsky first encountered a chess board at age 6, when his older brother, Alan, brought a variety of board games to a birthday party to help entertain the other children. Alan, who was proficient at the rules of the game but still a beginner, taught his younger brother to play and, for at least the first six months, thrashed him regularly. The future grandmaster was picking things up as he went along, but, at first, there was no great epiphany about the game and its place in his life.

“I think a lot of people want to imagine that it was love at first sight and that my brother couldn’t pull me away from the chessboard,” Mr. Naroditsky said. “It was more of a gradual process, where chess slowly entered the battery of stuff we did to pass the time. A lot of my best memories are just doing stuff with my brother.”

With the help of his father, Vladimir Naroditsky, who played a big part in teaching his sons the game, and a handful of coaches, Mr. Naroditsky’s Elo number, a method for calculating the relative skill of players, jumped approximately 500 points in less than a year. His family realized that he had a considerable talent for the game, but their son, who was 9 at the time, remained unfazed.

“As far as I was concerned, I was just playing games with my brother,” Mr. Naroditsky said, laughing.

He is being modest, his mother said in an interview. When he was 9, he was already ranked No. 1 in the United States. That year, he came in fifth in the Boys Under 10 category at the World Youth Chess tournament. By 2007, he was the world champion in the Boys Under 12 category.

Mr. Naroditsky at the desk where he records his videos and live streams.Credit…Travis Dove for The New York Times

But Can You Make a Living at It?

Fast-forward through thousands of games and many miles of travel to tournaments. Mr. Naroditsky, who earned his grandmaster title at 17, landed at Stanford University. By then, he was fully committed to the game.

There weren’t many opportunities to play anyone at his level in school, but chess was never far from his mind.

His parents, who had strongly supported their sons’ early interest in the game by driving them to countless tournaments and paying for coaches for their younger son, wanted him to pursue a business degree. While chess was a respectable hobby, they felt that a corporate career was far more promising.

While he was at Stanford, Mr. Naroditsky found a summer job as a teacher at the prestigious Castle Chess Camp, held at Emory University, where he met Peter Giannatos. The two were among the youngest of the camp’s instructors, and they formed a bond.

“I already knew that he was one of the most talented junior players in the United States,” Mr. Giannatos said in an interview. “I had never met him personally, but he was superfriendly and easy to get along with.”

After Mr. Naroditsky graduated from Stanford in 2019, the question of a paying job remained.

Mr. Giannatos, who is a few years older than Mr. Naroditsky, had founded the Charlotte Chess Center in North Carolina a few years earlier

Mr. Naroditsky moved from his mother’s house in the Bay Area — his father died in December 2019 — to Charlotte. Mr. Giannatos offered Mr. Naroditsky a job as resident grandmaster at the chess center, which was expanding to include clubs for all levels, school outreach and hosting of national events.

Now 26, Mr. Naroditsky is making that living his parents were concerned about. When he is not teaching at the Charlotte Chess Center, he takes on private students.The coronavirus pandemic has inspired many to take up new hobbies, and now people want to improve their skills, he said.

His largest audience, however, is online. “He’s been one of the top-rated online blitz and bullet players for several years,” Mr. Amburgy said.

Mr. Naroditsky is also a respected commentator for high-level tournaments on Chess.com, and he has a considerable social media following because of his down-to-earth nature and ability to analyze chess games and explain them to other players. His Twitch and YouTube channels — which have more than 200,000 followers each — guide viewers through notable plays.

When he is not teaching at the Charlotte Chess Center, Mr. Naroditsky works from his home in North Carolina.Credit…Travis Dove for The New York Times

Teaching Chess for The New York Times

Mr. Naroditsky is intent on making sure that readers of his Times column feel as if they are getting something out of it, just as he does on his social media channels.

“I feel like that’s my God-given responsibility,” he said, laughing. “I’ve resisted the pull of using clickbait and appealing video titles. However entertaining it is, I also want it to be instructive.”

The emphasis is on learning and building interest in the game.

“I also want the readers to feel like they couldn’t just go online and search for that puzzle,” he added. “I really want them to feel like this enriched their day, whether they’re beginners or advanced players.”

To emphasize the fact that he speaks to players of all levels, Mr. Naroditsky said that his favorite quote about chess was one best known as an Italian proverb but most likely traceable to a 1629 collection of writings by John Boys, who was the Dean of Canterbury in England:

“At the end of the game, both the king and the pawn go into the same box.”

Chess Replay: You Versus Frumkin

Take on Edward A. Frumkin in a recreation of a tournament game in New York, 1987.

By Daniel Naroditsky
June 13, 2022

White to move

Today’s puzzle features Josh Waitzkin, an international master and the protagonist of the 1993 film “Searching for Bobby Fischer.” Based on a memoir written by Josh’s father, Fred, the film depicts and dramatizes Josh’s meteoric rise. Josh Waitzkin is often overlooked, and today’s puzzle, in which he defeats a national master for the first time, is one of many scintillating wins in his long chess career. (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/13/crosswords/chess/chess-replay-you-versus-frumkin.html?action=click&module=RelatedLinks&pgtype=Article)

Mission 360 Bay Area Making a Mockery of Chess Tournament

I love the Bay area and have previously written about it and the Mechanic’s Institute Chess Room many times on this blog. I love the South, and Charlotte is in North Carolina, a Southern state, and I would love to visit the Charlotte Chess Center someday. Nevertheless, like the story about an argument between three umpires. The first umpire says, “I calls ’em like I sees ’em.” The second one says, “I calls ’em like they was.” And the third one says, “They ain’t nothin’ till I calls ’em.”

These games were…what word should be used for the excremental games to follow? One calls them “games” for lack of a better word, for none of these so-called “games” were games in any sense of the word. To each and every player appearing on this blog post today I ask, “Why do not you play Chess?”

I do not know what to say about the first game. The first thought after replaying the moves was, “This must be some kind of joke.” Unfortunately, the game can still be found at LiChess days later… The AW has been playing Chess for over half a century and I have never, ever, seen any game like it…

Round 7: Sivakumar, Shaaketh – Sivakumar, Shaashwath
1.g4 d5 2.e4 Bf5 3.Qf3 Qd6 4.Qb3 Bc8 5.Qb5+ Kd8 6.Bd3 Na6 7.f4 Nb4 8.Na3 Nxa2 9.e5 Qg6 10.Bf1 Qd3 11.Bg2 Qe2+ 1/2-1/2
https://lichess.org/broadcast/bay-area-im-norm-tournament/round-7/axlGi131

1 g4
1…d5
2 e4
2 Bf5
3 Qf3
3…Qd6
4 Qb3
4…Bc8
5 Qb5+
5 Kd8
6 Bd3
6…Na6
7 f4
7… Nb4
8 Na3
8…Nxa2
9 e5
9…Qg6
10 Bf1
10…Qd3
11 Bg2
11…Qe2+

1/2-1/2

Round 6: Zaloznyy, Mike – Sevillano, Enrico

  1. Nf3 Nf6 2. e3 c5 3. b3 g6 4. Bb2 Bg7 5. Be2 O-O 6. O-O Nc6 1/2-1/2
    https://lichess.org/broadcast/bay-area-im-norm-tournament/round-6/zi3BMf0v

Round 6: Yanayt, Eugene – Andrianov, Nikola

  1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 e6 5. e3 Nbd7 6. Bd3 dxc4 7. Bxc4 1/2-1/2
    https://lichess.org/broadcast/bay-area-im-norm-tournament/round-6/zi3BMf0v

Round 7: Sevillano, Enrico – Yanayt, Eugene

  1. Nf3 Nf6 2. d4 g6 3. g3 Bg7 4. Bg2 O-O 5. O-O d6 6. c4 Nc6 1/2-1/2
    https://lichess.org/broadcast/bay-area-im-norm-tournament/round-7/axlGi131

Round 7: Andrianov, Nikolay – Yu, Jaingwei

  1. d4 d5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. c4 c6 4. cxd5 cxd5 5. Nc3 a6 6. Bf4 1/2-1/2
    https://lichess.org/broadcast/bay-area-im-norm-tournament/round-7/axlGi131

The Burning Board Go Festival

https://www.trianglegoclub.org/burning/burningboard.htm

Join Us at Burning Board!

Burning Board Go Festival is a great chance to reconnect with your fellow go players, benefit from multiple workshops with great teachers and immerse yourself in Go for 4 (or more) days in a beautiful setting at an inexpensive cost.
Burning Board Go Festival and camp will be June 13 through June 19, 2022, with the main tournament and workshops beginning June 16. The festival will take place at Camp Lapihio in Umstead State park in Raleigh, North Carolina. There will be six long tournament games, and there will be lectures later in the day. Self-paired games may be played anytime. All tournament games will be AGA-rated, and the self-paired games may be rated if both players consent. There will also be a Saturday night bonfire and party for those camping in the park. The goal is to have tournament games and workshops in a festive, outdoor setting.

Workshops and game reviews will feature Ying Shen 2P and teacher/author Yuan Zhou on Thursday, Friday and Saturday as well as Sunday morning. Participation in these workshops alone is worth much more than the price of admission.

Picnic lunch will be provided on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Registrants are responsible for all other meals. There are numerous outdoor grills available for use, as well as the mess hall kitchen. There are also a number of restaurants and grocery stores within a few miles of the park.

Any participant under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. This is not a place where you can drop off your children.

Participants are encouraged to camp onsite. We have reserved 28 primitive cabins. These cabins can sleep from three to four people, but do not have electricity, air conditioning, or any linens. Cabin campers should bring bedding or sleeping bags and flashlights. Only 4 cabins are available for single occupancy or 2 day stays. Camp Lapihio will be available to us beginning at 3 PM on Monday, June 13, and early arrivals are welcome although scheduled activities won’t begin until Thursday, June 16. Cabins do not have locks, so please either don’t bring valuables, lock valuables in your car or carry them with you at all times. View photos of cabins and the campsite here.

The number of participants (players and non-players) is limited to 120, and registration will be closed after reaching that number so register early.

We have a Facebook Event page at https://fb.me/e/283LZHHBL to facilitate carpool and cabin partnering ideas. We will also use this Facebook page to make announcements before and during the event. (https://www.trianglegoclub.org/burning/burningboard.htm)

https://www.trianglegoclub.org/burning/burningboard.htm

The Return of Mr. Hankey

In the recently completed Holiday CCCSA GM 2021 Chess tournament held in Charlotte, North Carolina, Grandmaster Tanguy Ringoir,

https://xpertchesslessons.files.wordpress.com/2021/12/fc322-iu.jpg
Charlotte Chess Center Blog: CCCSA Norm Invitational …
charlottechesscenter.blogspot.com

recipient of the now infamous Mr. Hankey award (https://xpertchesslessons.wordpress.com/2021/09/11/the-charlotte-chess-center-mr-hankey-award/) was invited to return even though he was still stinking to high heaven after his abysmal non performance in the Charlotte Labor Day GM A 2021 tournament. In the first round GM Ringoir had the black pieces versus GM Alex Lenderman,

a higher rated player, and one who has been playing very well recently. The game began as a E 60 King’s Indian (https://www.365chess.com/opening.php?m=8&n=77&ms=d4.Nf6.c4.g6.Nf3.Bg7.Nc3&ns=7.14.11.15.76.81.77) but after 4…d5 became a D90 Gruenfeld, Three knights variation (https://www.365chess.com/opening.php?m=9&n=325&ms=d4.Nf6.c4.g6.Nf3.Bg7.Nc3.d5&ns=7.14.11.15.76.81.77.325). The players took no chances while playing solid moves while circling each other like beasts of prey hoping to live another day, and in a bishop of opposite color ending with an equal number of pawns, a draw was agreed on move 36. This was almost double the number of moves, on average, played per game in the aforementioned tournament.

In the second round GM Ringoir again had the black pieces and after thirty moves had what IM Boris Kogan was fond of calling, a “Beeg Pawn!” Then FM Miland Maiti

https://5570fa7c8b4f08ce69a2-3b11a0857599ec5685afe8d701a4f833.ssl.cf5.rackcdn.com/profiles/872_5242_milind_maiti.jpg
https://chess.stream/Invitational/PlayerPage?USCFID=14442276

blundered horribly before doing it again…and it was on to round three.

The third round opponent was Gauri Shankar, only a FIDE Master, the kind of player a Grandmaster would usually defeat while trimming his nails, especially with having the White pieces for the first time.

GM Tanguy Ringoir (BEL) vs FM Shankar Gauri (IND)

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Ftse2.mm.bing.net%2Fth%3Fid%3DOIP.MBoDGQibaA6Cu6xb_8IejwHaE8%26pid%3DApi&f=1
https://www.thechessdrum.net/blog/2015/07/09/2015-world-open-arlington-virginia/


Holiday CCCSA GM 2021 round 03

  1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 Nf6 4. Nc3 e6 5. Bg5 h6 6. Bh4 dxc4 7. e4 g5 8. Bg3 b5 9. Be2 Bb7 10. Qc2 Nh5 11. Rd1 Nxg3 12. hxg3 Na6 13. b3 cxb3 14. Qxb3 Bg7 15. e5 O-O 16. Kf1 ½-½ (https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-holiday-cccsa-gm/03-Ringoir_Tanguy-Gauri_Shankar)

Playing so many moves early in the tournament obviously had a deleterious effect upon GM Ringoir as shown by the above game, and the one below:

WIM Stavroula Tsolakidou 2379 (GRE)

https://ratings.fide.com/profile/4264312

vs GM Tanguy Ringoir (BEL)

Holiday CCCSA GM 2021 round 04

  1. d4 Nf6 2. Nf3 g6 3. Bg5 Bg7 4. Nbd2 O-O 5. e3 d5 6. Be2 Nbd7 7. O-O Re8 8. c3 e5 9. h3 c6 ½-½
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-holiday-cccsa-gm/04-Tsolakidou_Stavroula-Ringoir_Tanguy

Let’s give the so-called Grandmaster a break as he did have black, and everyone knows it has become virtually impossible to win with the black pieces, so why sit there all day beating a dead skunk? Surely after all the accumulated rest our Guy will come out of the gate Tan, rested, and ready for the next round, right?

GM Tanguy Ringoir (BEL) vs FM Edward Song (USA)

https://5570fa7c8b4f08ce69a2-3b11a0857599ec5685afe8d701a4f833.ssl.cf5.rackcdn.com/profiles/378_5760_edward_song.jpg
https://chess.stream/Invitational/PlayerPage?USCFID=13994740


Holiday CCCSA GM 2021 round 05

  1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. g3 Bb4+ 5. Bd2 Be7 6. Bg2 O-O 7. O-O c6 8. Qc2 Nbd7 9. Bf4 a5 10. Rd1 a4 11. Ne5 Nh5 12. Bc1 Nhf6 13. Bf4 Nh5 14. Bc1 Nhf6 15. Bf4 ½-½
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-holiday-cccsa-gm/05-Ringoir_Tanguy-Song_Edward

In the course of the life of a Grandmaster it is inevitable that he will encounter a young whipper-snapper who will refuse a draw offer because he is only an International Master and the only way he can become a Grandmaster is by beating players like YOU!

IM Jason Liang (USA)

https://i0.wp.com/images.chessstream.com/profiles/740_21498_jason_liang.jpg
http://chessstream.com/profile/jason-liang-21498

vs GM Tanguy Ringoir (BEL)
Holiday CCCSA GM 2021 round 06

  1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. c3 Nf6 5. d3 d6 6. O-O a6 7. a4 Ba7 8. Re1 O-O 9. h3 h6 10. Nbd2 Re8 11. b4 Be6 12. Bxe6 Rxe6 13. Rb1 d5 14. Qc2 d4 15. c4 Qe7 16. Qb3 a5 17. Ba3 Nd7 18. b5 Nb4 19. Bxb4 axb4 20. a5 Nc5 21. Qc2 Rg6 22. g3 Rf8 23. Nb3 Na4 24. Nbxd4 Bxd4 25. Nxd4 Nc5 26. Nf5 Qd7 27. Rxb4 Nxd3 28. Qd2 Rd6 29. Nxd6 Nxe1 30. Qxe1 Qxd6 31. Ra4 Qd3 32. a6 bxa6 33. bxa6 Qc2 34. Ra1 Qxc4 35. Qb1 Kh7 36. a7 Qc6 37. Qb8 Qc3 38. Ra4 1-0 https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-holiday-cccsa-gm/06-Liang_Jason-Ringoir_Tanguy

What’s worse than a Chess Grandmaster who has just lost in the prior round and has the White army against his next opponent, especially when that opponent is a middle aged IM?

GM Tanguy Ringoir (BEL) vs IM Alexander Kaliksteyn (USA)

https://5570fa7c8b4f08ce69a2-3b11a0857599ec5685afe8d701a4f833.ssl.cf5.rackcdn.com/profiles/390_23923_alexander_kalikshteyn.jpg
https://chess.stream/Invitational/PlayerPage?USCFID=12579305


Holiday CCCSA GM 2021 round 07

  1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 e6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nc6 5. Nc3 Qc7 6. Be3 a6 7. Qf3 Nf6 8. Nxc6 bxc6 9. Qg3 Qxg3 10. hxg3 Rb8 11. b3 Bb4 12. Bd2 d5 13. Bd3 h6 14. f3 O-O 15. O-O-O Rd8 16. Bf4 Ra8 17. Na4 Nd7 18. g4 Bb7 19. g5 hxg5 20. Bxg5 f6 21. Be3 Kf7 22. c4 e5 23. exd5 cxd5 24. cxd5 Bxd5 25. Kb2 Be7 26. Rd2 Bc6 27. Bc4+ Kg6 28. Bd5 Bxd5 29. Rxd5 f5 30. Nc3 Bf6 31. Rhd1 Nf8 32. Rxd8 Rxd8 33. Rxd8 Bxd8 34. b4 Kf6 35. a4 Ke6 36. a5 Nd7 37. b5 Nb8 38. Ba7 Bxa5 39. Bxb8 Bxc3+ 40. Kxc3 axb5 41. Ba7 Kd5 42. Be3 g6 43. g3 Ke6 44. Kb4 f4 45. gxf4 exf4 46. Bxf4 Kf5 47. Bh2 Kg5 48. Bg3 Kf5 49. Kxb5 g5 50. Kc4 g4 51. f4 Ke4 52. Bh2 1-0
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-holiday-cccsa-gm/07-Ringoir_Tanguy-Kaliksteyn_Alexander

At this point the atavistic tendency of Mr. Ringoir reared its ugly head and he reverted to type:

GM Cemil Can Ali Marandi (TUR)

vs GM Tanguy Ringoir (BEL)
Holiday CCCSA GM 2021 round 08

  1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 Nf6 4. O-O Nxe4 5. d4 Nd6 6. Bxc6 dxc6 7. dxe5 Nf5 8. Qxd8+ Kxd8 9. h3 Be7 10. Nc3 Nh4 11. Nd4 Nf5 12. Nf3 Nh4 13. Nxh4 Bxh4 14. f4 Bf5 15. Rd1+ Ke8 16. g4 Bc8 17. Kg2 h5 18. f5 g6 19. Kf3 ½-½

GM Tanguy Ringoir (BEL) vs IM Raja Panjwani (CAN)

https://www.uschesschamps.com/sites/default/files/styles/player_bio_photo/public/headshots/DSC_1263.jpg?itok=ejQRHo_j


Holiday CCCSA GM 2021 round 09

  1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 b6 4. g3 Bb7 5. Bg2 Be7 6. O-O ½-½

There is a reason those in charge at the Charlotte Chess Center invited the Mr. Hankey award winner to return.

Vampires, Movie Stars, and No Rules to the WRITING on the WALL

In what now seems another lifetime my younger sister, a grammar school teacher, insisted I read a book:

$_57
A “special preview edition” of Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire (1976). (faboorecords/eBay) https://vamped.org/2014/11/11/20-things-you-probably-didnt-know-about-the-interview-with-the-vampire-movie-pt-1/

I have long forgotten my response but it must have been along the lines of, “Are you kidding me, Lynnette?” I do, though, recall her response, which was, “Oh Michael, you will LOVE IT!” I had my doubts…Nevertheless, I read the book because my sister had never previously recommended any book. Turned out my little sister was right… I even read a few more of the series until it seemed the author was writing the same story again and again.

The book was made into a movie I did not see because, well, you know, I read the book. When putting this post together I found the following video, of which I was completely unaware, as I was unaware of how well the movie did at the box office. I watched the video several times while telling myself the time spent was for “research” when the truth is that it contains Andie McDowell, whom I adore, after meeting her in Asheville, North Carolina, at the Earth Fare grocery store on the east side of town, while living in the mountains. I was next in line when, all of a sudden, Ms. McDowell comes barging in from the front in a failed attempt to check out before me. “I am in a big hurry,” she said. “Sounds like something a city girl would say,” said I. She shot me a look which reminded me of the time I was walking to Fantasyland Records (https://fantasylandrecords.com/) near the corner of Peachtree Street and Rumson road in the Buckhead section of Atlanta, Georgia, where I resided, and there was Virginia Gunn, a local television personality, sitting in a sports car smoking a cigarette. “You’re Virginia Gunn,” I said. She shot me a look before saying, “Buzz off, buster!” That was the kinda look given by Andie… I smiled when saying, “Go ahead, ma’am, celebrity has some privilege.” She gave me another look that was the definition of perplexed, and began unloading her cart. “I saw you on the David Letterman show before you married your high school sweetheart and you sure were happy.” Ms. McDowell replied, “Yeah, well, it didn’t work out. It never does…” She left hurriedly as I proceeded to check out. After exiting I walked by her car and she seemed to be having trouble getting it together. By the time I was near she dropped a rather large pizza box and I nabbed it before the thing touched the pavement. She again looked at me strangely before saying, “You’re my hero.” Unfortunately it did not sound like I was “her hero,” if’n you get my drift… Sometime later I was having brunch at the Earth Fare on the west side of town. I was at a large table all by myself reading the Sunday New York Times, oblivious to the fact that the lunch crowd had quickly filled the place. When I looked up there was Andie, with a young girl I took to be her daughter. There they stood, looking at me and the empty surrounding seats with longing in their eyes. “Would you like to sit down?” I asked. “I thought you’d never ask,” Andie said. I began making arrangements to leave as quickly as possible when the daughter said to her mother, “That’s the chess guy. He was in the newspaper,” said the young girl. Andie again gave me a look that’s difficult to describe before saying, “So, you’re famous?” I smiled before saying, “Not like you. I’m a local yokel.” She smiled, and that was the first time I had seen her smile. I told her about beginning as an extra on the movie filmed at Atlanta Stadium, The Slugger’s Wife (https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0090036/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1), and how I had to join the screen actor’s guild to be shown in the movie (I had to run out to centerfield and man the camera when the ‘slugger’ slugged the record ball the chicks love outta the park), but my “part”, was cut outta the movie, which is now considered one of the worst movies ever produced. I told them about getting to eat with the actors and ball players, like Mark, “The Bird” Fidrych, a “flash in the pan” but what a flash!

Photo of Mark Fidrych
https://www.baseball-reference.com/players/f/fidryma01.shtml

They laughed uproariously after being told that I found myself in line at the buffet, behind one of the stars, Rebecca De Mornay,

Michael O’Keefe & Rebecca De Mornay

and when she looked back at me I said, “You’re Rebecca De Mornay.” She scowled before replying, “And who the hell are you?”

Before leaving Andie asked me which of her movies was my favorite. I looked at her daughter and hesitated…”It’s OK, she knows all my movies.” The reply came immediately, “Sex, Lies, and Videotape.” She looked at me for a moment as a faint smile began to appear before saying, “Really?” To which I responded, “I liked Four Wedding and a Funeral, too.” Her smile grew larger and I looked at her daughter, who was absolutely loving this. Then Andie said, “Most people choose Groundhog Day.” The response was, “I am not most people.”

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098724/mediaviewer/rm1865690112/

“It’s the birthday of American horror novelist Anne Rice (books by this author), born in New Orleans (1941) and best known for creating the novel Interview with the Vampire (1976)

in which a young man interviews a 200-year-old vampire named Louis about his life. The book introduces the character of Lestat the Vampire and was later made into a film. There are 14 books in the Vampire Chronicles saga, most of which have been international best-sellers.

Rice was inspired to write Interview with the Vampire after the death of her six-year old daughter from leukemia. She said:

“I was a sad, broken atheist. I pitched myself into writing and made up a story about vampires. I didn’t know it at the time but it was all about my daughter, the loss of her and the need to go on living when faith is shattered. But the lights do come back on, no matter how dark it seems, and I’m sensitive now, more than ever, to the beauty of the world — and more resigned to living with cosmic uncertainty.”

Rice based the character of the girl vampire, Claudia, on her daughter.

It took Rice five weeks to write 358 pages about the relationship between two vampires for Interview with a Vampire. She researched vampires during the day and wrote at night, once even attending a concert by the heavy metal band Iron Maiden for inspiration.

When asked why she chose to write about vampires, Rice answered:

“Vampires are the best metaphor for the human condition. Here you have a monster with a soul that’s immortal, yet in a biological body. It’s a metaphor for us, as it’s very difficult to realize that we are going to die, and day to day we have to think and move as though we are immortal. A vampire like Lestat in Interview … is perfect for that because he transcends time — yet he can be destroyed, go mad and suffer; it’s intensely about the human dilemma.”

When asked who makes a better literary subject, vampires or zombies, Rice answered:

“The vampire is an articulate character in our literature. In the last 30 years or so, the vampire has been an articulate, charming, beguiling complex person so he’s miles away from a zombie. The vampire is the poet and the writer of the monster world. The zombies are the exact opposite. They’re not sexy, they don’t listen to good music and they don’t wear good clothes.”

On writing, Anne Rice once said, “There are no rules. It’s amazing how willing people are to tell you that you aren’t a real writer unless you conform to their clichés and their rules. My advice? Reject rules and critics out of hand. Define yourself. Do it your way. Make yourself the writer of your dreams.” (https://www.garrisonkeillor.com/radio/twa-the-writers-almanac-for-october-4-2021/)

“The Writing On The Wall”

Across a painted desert lies a train of vagabonds
All that’s left of what we were it’s what we have become
Once our empires glorious but now the empire’s gone
The dead gave us the time to live and now our time is done

Now we are victorious, we’ve become our slaves
A land of hope and glory building graveyards for the brave

Have you seen the writing on the wall?
Have you seen that writing?
Can you see the riders on the storm?
Can you see them riding?
Can you see them riding?

Holding on to fury is that all we ever know
Ignorance our judge and jury all we’ve got to show
From Hollywood to Babylon ~ holy war to kingdom come
On a trail of dust and ashes ~ when the burning sky is done
A tide of change is coming and that is what you fear
The earthquake is a coming but you don’t want to hear
You’re just too blind to see

Have you seen the writing on the wall?
Have you seen that writing?
Can you see the riders on the storm?
Can you see them riding?
Can you see them riding, riding next to you?

Have you seen the writing on the wall?
Have you seen that writing?
Can you see the riders on the storm?
Can you see them riding?

Have you seen the writing on the wall?
Have you seen that writing?
Can you see the riders on the storm?
Can you see them riding?
Can you see them riding, riding next to you?
https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/ironmaiden/thewritingonthewall.html

Chess Is Weird At The Charlotte Chess Center

They are back at it in Charlotte. The first round of four different tournaments was played last night. Before I begin let me say I have no bone to pick with the good people in Charlotte. I have written about the Charlotte Chess Center because they are located in the South, the region from which I sprang over seven decades ago. I am proud there is such a wonderful place as the CCC and the same goes for the Atlanta Chess Center, home of GM Ben Finegold, who is famous all over the world. When I began playing back in the 1970s the South was not exactly a hot bed of Chess activity. When traveling to an out of state Chess tournament I met many people who told me they had never met anyone from the South who played Chess, and some who had never met any Southerner, period. Therefore when anyone causes opprobrium down South I am not pleased. Someone who refused to give permission to use his name said, “Everyone knows Charlotte is the place to go to draw. It was that way before you began to write about it, Mike. All you did was shine a light on it.” Like it or not, that is the reputation of the Charlotte Chess Center.

Mr. Grant Oen,

Grant Oen

who is the “Chief Arbiter and Organizer of the Chess tournaments held at the Charlotte Chess Club and Scholastic Academy,” and is also the “Assistant Director, Charlotte Chess Center, and a National Tournament Director, International Arbiter,” has previously written, “If he is fine with several quick draws, that is acceptable for with us as long as the rules are followed.” (https://xpertchesslessons.wordpress.com/2021/06/03/reply-to-grant-oen/) A draw culture has been fostered in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The rules do need to be changed. You may think me crazy especially since Chess is currently riding a cresting wave because of the popularity of the Queen’s Gambit movie, just a Chess enjoyed a boom after Bobby Fischer defeated Boris Spassky to win the title of World Chess Champion. What follows a “boom”?

Back in the late seventies and early eighties the game of Backgammon “boomed” before going “bust”. I mean it busted like a poker player being dealt a 2-4-6-8-10! The Backgammon craze, or fad ended like a Chess game that ends with the word, “Checkmate!” One week Gammons was full of people every night, the next it was empty…

In an article at Chess.com dated 9/2/21, How Chess Can Make You Better At Business, written by “Chesscom” begins: “When you see chess in movies, it’s always associated with great minds—and there’s a good reason for this: chess is the ultimate intellectual game.” (https://www.chess.com/article/view/how-chess-can-make-you-better-at-business)

I beg to differ. The statement is false, and is a perfect example of the hubris shown by the Chess community. There are far more people who play, and consider the ancient game of Wei-Chi to be “the ultimate intellectual game.” I am one of them. One of the reasons what is called “Go” in the West is “the ultimate intellectual game,” is that there is a winner in 99 and 44/100, if not more, of the games played. Seriously, it is would probably be better to say 99.9%, but there was this Ivory snow commercial ‘back in the day’ that used 99.44.

To back up my point this is what World Chess Champion Emanuel Lasker said about Go:

Emanuel Lasker Quote: "While the Baroque rules of Chess ...

And this:

Go uses the most elemental materials and concepts — line and circle, wood and stone, black and white — combining them with simple rules to generate subtle strategies and complex tactics that stagger the imagination.
Iwamoto Kaoru,

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Ftse1.mm.bing.net%2Fth%3Fid%3DOIP.v5RlqwVR0GXupLN6HGehnAAAAA%26pid%3DApi&f=1
senseis.xmp.net

9-dan professional Go player and former Honinbo title holder.

Go, ultimate strategic game (https://dragallur.wordpress.com/2016/03/16/go-ultimate-strategic-game/)

Billionaire Res Sinquefield

https://media2.fdncms.com/riverfronttimes/imager/u/blog/3007837/sinquefieldupi.jpg?cb=1454775102
UPI Photo/Bill Greenblatt
Rex Sinquefield has been a major donor to institutions in the city, including the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis — and a host of conservative politicians.

instituted a NEW RULE in the series of Chess tournaments named after him, the Sinquefield Cup. Players are not allowed to offer a draw. Unfortunately, they can repeat the position three times and the game ends in another dreaded draw…Listen up, Rex! You have got the money and are like E.F. Hutton. When you speak people listen. How about instituting the Ko rule from Go in the next Sinquefield Cup tournaments. If a player repeats the same position for the third time YOU LOSE!!!

Now if I had a billzillion digits I would go even further and change the stalemate rule to a win for the player that forces the enemy King into a position without having a legal move at his disposal. What, you think the AW is crazy? I’ve been called worse…I would not stop there. The Royal game needs NEW LIFE! The AW would FREE THE PAWN! That’s right, folks, I would allow the pawn to RETREAT! Why not allow the pawn advance one square to the rear?!

This game was “played” in the first round of the Charlotte Labor Day GM A 2021 last night:

GM Kamil Dragun 2555 (POL) vs GM Cemil Can Ali Marandi 2530 (TUR)

D14 Queen’s Gambit Declined Slav, exchange variation, 6.Bf4 Bf5

  1. d4 d5 2. c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. cxd5 cxd5 5. Nf3 Nc6 6. Bf4 Bf5 7. e3 e6 8. Bd3 Bxd3 9. Qxd3 Bd6

If you go to the Big database at 365Chess.com you will find that 99.4% of games that reached this position were drawn! (https://www.365chess.com/opening.php?m=19&n=5693&ms=d4.d5.c4.c6.Nc3.Nf6.cxd5.cxd5.Nf3.Nc6.Bf4.Bf5.e3.e6.Bd3.Bxd3.Qxd3.Bd6&ns=7.8.23.36.307.350.965.868.130.49.50.50.51.51.4988.5186.5593.5693)

The “game” concluded after:

  1. Bxd6 Qxd6 11. O-O O-O 12. Rfc1 Rfc8 13. h3 ½-½
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-labor-day-gm-a/01-Dragun_Kamil-Ali_Marandi_Cemil_Can

The opponents rank first and second in the event. It is more than a little obvious they did not come to play; they came to draw. It makes me wanna PUKE!

Then in the first round (FIRST ROUND!) of the Charlotte Labor Day GM B this game was recorded:

IM Levy Rozman 2353 (USA) vs GM Mark Paragua 2475 (PHI)

Charlotte Labor Day GM B 2021 round 01

D92 Gruenfeld, 5.Bf4

  1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nc3 d5 4. Nf3 Bg7 5. Bf4 O-O 6. Rc1 Be6 7. e3 dxc4 8. Ng5 Bd5 9. e4 h6 10. exd5 hxg5 11. Bxg5 Nxd5 12. Bxc4 Nb6 13. Bb3 Nc6 14. Ne2 Qd7 15. O-O Rad8 16. Qd2 Bxd4 ½-½
    https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-labor-day-gm-b/01-Rozman_Levy-Paragua_Mark

What did the fans of Chess think about the game? This is from the CHAT at ChessBomb:

ZikoGG: they agreed to a draw


jphamlore: Well that was an abrupt ending.


Nero: what the


Nero: chess is weird

And you know it makes me wonder what’s going on…

Levy Rozman

WHO AM I?

My name is Levy Rozman, also known as “GOTHAMCHESS.”

I’m an International Master, Twitch Streamer, Content Creator on YouTube and former scholastic chess coach.

I have been playing chess for almost 20 years, and teaching it for nearly 10 years. 

During my time as a scholastic chess coach I learned how to best teach the game to players of all levels.

This includes players that fall between ‘Beginner’ and ‘Intermediate.’

I’ve learned all the methods and strategies that help players in that level range advance to the intermediate level and beyond. 

This course is my attempt at compiling this knowledge and making it accessible to anyone in the world!

Charlotte Chess Center & Scholastic Academy Makes Outstanding Move!

The following notice is on the website of the Charlotte Chess Center & Scholastic Academy:

NOTICE: Per yesterday’s CDC announcement and rise of COVID cases, this event will now require masks in the tournament hall. (https://www.charlottechesscenter.org/norm)
Unfortunately it is not shown on the main page, but can be located at the GM/IM NORM INVITATIONAL- SUMMER page after clicking on “events” at the home page. Nevertheless, I applaud those enlightened people at the CCCSA for making such an OUTSTANDING MOVE, on the Chessboard of life.

The Great State of North Carolina is one of the Southern states. It, along with the Great State of Georgia, my home state, are also considered to be part of the “Southeast.” After checking the latest Covid statistics I learned that Georgia is tenth in the USA with nine deaths per day on a seven day moving average (https://usafacts.org/visualizations/coronavirus-covid-19-spread-map/). North Carolina is right below, tied with Arizona with a seven day moving average of eight deaths. When it comes to cases North Carolina is seventh, showing 1926. Georgia is tenth with 1675 cases on a seven day moving average. When it comes to total cases thus far in the pandemic, NC is eighth in the nation with 1,041,620; Georgia is eleventh with a total of 926,707 cases. Unfortunately for my state, 21,654 have died of the virus, which is eight in the nation, compared with the 13,606 humans who have died, ranking NC fourteenth in the country.

When it comes to illness and death being ranked in, or near the top ten is not good. It is a fact that Republican states lead the USA in both cases and deaths. Our country at this time needs to become more UNITED and less STATE. It is extremely difficult to go against the grain and buck the norm, especially in the South. Unfortunately, what should be a normal and natural thing that has been done at the CCCSA could be condemned by some members of the community. I commend FM Peter Giannatos,

https://www.charlotteobserver.com/charlottefive/c5-people/79y0eb/picture236129123/alternates/LANDSCAPE_1140/Chess%20Center%204
Master level chess player operates Charlotte’s first …
charlotteobserver.com

the Executive Director and Founder, and Grant Oen,

https://xpertchesslessons.files.wordpress.com/2021/07/bbb6b-15178224_10210634834642421_3844215551247095300_n.jpg
Charlotte Chess Center Blog: Meet CCCSA Blog Contributor …
charlottechesscenter.blogspot.com

the Assistant Director/Events Manager, of the CCCSA, and everyone at the CCCSA for taking a stand for We The People!

I do this because just a few days ago I watched a man in a hospital bed, with hoses attached to his nose and other places, who had Covid, but was still defiant, claiming he had a “right” to not take the possibly life saving vaccine if he did not want to take it, even if it killed him. He was a “good ol’ boy” from the South, and did not want anyone telling him what to do. The interviewer asked the man if he thought he had a duty to his fellow humans to take the vaccine in order to not give the virus to anyone. “Hell no!” he replied. “We’re all in this alone.”

The following day there was another gentleman on the television all hooked up to tubes in a hospital bed, and he was being interviewed. He was from Arizona, and did not have any particular reason for not taking the possibly life saving vaccine, but said, “Sure wished I had.” The interviewer asked, “Why didn’t you take it?” He said, “I dunno…didn’t have any reason for not taking it, I guess. I mean, it’s like getting the virus was like what was happening to other people, not to me.”

I know people like both of these two individuals. They are both playing Russian roulette with their lives, and the LIVES OF THOSE WITH WHOM THEY COME IN CONTACT! Both are members of the Chess community. With one old, ornery, and cantankerously recalcitrant Chess coach almost everyone with whom he comes in contact has been vaccinated, yet he refuses to take the vaccine, so its not like there is peer pressure for him to not take the shot. The other is a Grandmaster who writes a blog replete with anti-vax madness. He has obviously become a strident right (wrong) winger as he has aged. Many people fear the government. While running for the office of POTUS the former actor Ronald Reagan said, “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.” The line elicited a big laugh, and has been repeated endlessly by Republicans running for office ever since. It is, arguably, the most famous thing the man said during his entire life that was not a line from a movie.

It caused me to think, “Why would anyone in their right mind say such a thing if he wants to lead the government?” Think about it…The thought that followed was a line from a Bob Dylan song: “Don’t follow leaders, watch the parking meters.” (https://www.bobdylan.com/songs/subterranean-homesick-blues/)

If—
Rudyard Kipling – 1865-1936

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with wornout tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings—nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run—
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!
https://poets.org/poem/if

Pushing Chess To The Limit

The post today features two games from the ongoing Charlotte Chess Center GM/IM Norm invitational. The first game is between IM Alexander Matros (2371) from Kazakhstan, the top rated player in the IM tournament, and FM Doug Eckert (2165) of the USA. The 2165 rating is his FIDE rating, which is only Expert level. His USCF rating is 2258, which is above the Master line. The question is why are there two different ratings? Certainly Doug, who is eligible for the US Senior, would like to come out of this tournament with his FIDE rating over 2200. Mr. Eckert is on the board of the St. Louis Chess Club, as one learns in the following video:

2016 Sinquefield Cup: GM Maurice Ashley with FM Doug Eckert

IM Alexander Matros (2371)

vs FM Doug Eckert (2165)

Charlotte CLT IM 2021 round 02

  1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 e6 3. Nf3 d5 4. Nc3 Bb4 5. cxd5 exd5 6. Bg5 h6 7. Bxf6 Qxf6 8. Qa4+ Nc6 9. e3 O-O 10. Be2 Be6 11. O-O a6 12. Rfc1 Bd6 13. Qd1 Ne7 14. Na4 Rad8 15. Nc5 Bc8 16. b4 g5 17. g3
Black to move

I chose this game because of this position. Back in the day I was very fond of pushing the pawns in front of my king in order to attack. When IM of GM strength Boris Kogan

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.peoples.ru%2Fsport%2Fchees_player%2Fboris_kogan%2FCum16lOhGXitX.jpeg&f=1&nofb=1

would see this when going over one of my games he would invariably groan. “Mike,” he would begin, “why you do this?” I would reply, “Mikhail Tal does this.” Boris would immediately return fire with, “You not Tal!”

https://www.elkandruby.com/gallery_gen/a1515281abb85a6932911bec51431c54_932x1400.jpg

Because of this I know more than a little something about this kind of position. In an analogous position I once played my knight to g6. “Why Mike?” Boris asked, “where knight go?” He had a point. Nevertheless I answered, “Because the knight plugs a hole on g6 and supports moving the h-pawn, Boris.” At that point Boris howled with laughter (if nothing else going over my games did cause the Hulk to laugh…), before repeating, “Plug hole,” with more laughter following…After gathering himself Boris explained that the best move in this position would be to go ahead and play 17…h5. “If you are going to attack, ATTACK!” Boris then patiently explained that since white had moved the g-pawn in front of his king, the attack with the h-pawn would be appropriate. This is why when teaching the Royal game to neophytes I will remember Boris every time I say, “There is a rule about not moving the pawns in front of your king.” Back to the game…what move did Doug choose?

17…Nf5? (and it was all down hill from here…) 18. Nd2 Rfe8 19. a4 Qe7 20. Nf1 Ng7 21. b5 a5 22. Ra2 Ne6 23. Nd3 Bd7 24. Bf3 c6 25. bxc6 Bxc6 26. Nd2 Qd7 27. Bg4 Rf8 28. Bf5 Qe7 29. Nb3 Ng7 30. Bh3 Ra8 31. Qd2 Bb4 32. Nxb4 Qxb4 33. Qxb4 axb4 34. a5 Bb5 35. Bf1 Bxf1 36. Kxf1 Ne6 37. Ra4 b6 38. a6 Ra7 39. Rc6 Rb8 40. Kg2 Kf8 41. Rxb4 Rxa6 42. Nc5 1-0 (https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-clt-im/02-Matros_Alexander-Eckert_Doug)

The next game again features IM Matros, who sits behind the black army this time. His opponent is Dominique Myers,

a USCF National Master from the Great State of North Carolina, with a USCF rating of only 2182 that has fallen below the minimum number needed to become a Master, 2200. Mr. Myers FIDE rating is only 1985, so you know Dominique, the lowest rated player in the field, was hoping to at least boost his rating(s) at least somewhat. On with the game, and what a game it was! This game was a real “barn burner” as is often heard in the South. There are more twists and turns than Chubby Checker’s famous song, “The Twist.”

This game reminds me of some of the boxing matches seen, and participated in, “back in the day,” with shot followed by return shot and blow was followed by return blow, as was the case when in the final year of high school word went around that there was going to be a “fight at the football field.” Mike Chennault and Robert White put on a display, trading licks and swapping blows that would have made Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier proud!

https://external-content.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.si.com%2F.image%2Ft_share%2FMTY4MTkyMTgwOTYwNTAzNzA5%2Fmuhammad-ali-joe-frazier-thrilla-in-manillajpg.jpg&f=1&nofb=1
https://www.si.com/boxing/2015/10/01/muhammad-ali-vs-joe-frazier-thrilla-manilla-video-anniversary

The fight culminated with both exhausted combatants landing simultaneous right hands to the head and they both went DOWN! Then they became friends. Today a gun would’ve been pulled, with one dead and the other in prison for decades…
Which reminds me of how disappointed was the man from the High Planes, NM David Vest, a true horse lover, when I was asked at the House of Pain, “What are the six most famous words in sports?” Expecting, “And down the stretch they come,” Dave was crushed to hear me say the words famously spoken by Howard Cosell, “Down goes Frazier! Down goes Frazier!” You get my drift; it was that kind of game!

NM Dominique Myers (1985) vs IM Alexander Matros (2371)

Charlotte CLT IM 2021 round 3

ECO: B13 Caro-Kann, exchange variation

e4 c6 2. d4 d5 3. exd5 cxd5 4. Bd3 Nc6 5. c3 Qc7 (SF 13 @ depth 61 plays this move; SF 12 @depth 50 plays the most often played move, 5…Nf6) 6. Ne2 (SF 13 @ depth 41 plays 6.h3) 6…e6 (Two out of the three SF programs play the most often played move, 6…Bg4; the other plays the seldom played 6…e5) 7. Bf4 Bd6 8. Bxd6 Qxd6 9. O-O Nf6 10. Nd2 O-O (SF plays 10…e5. See Bersamina vs Antonio Jr. below) 11. Ng3 (TN) Bd7 12. f4 g6 13. Kh1 Rad8 14. Qf3 Ne8 15. Rae1 f5 16. Re3 Nf6 17. Qe2 Kh8 18. Kg1 Ne4 19. Nh1? (Nimzovich style!?) 19…Ne7? (This moved is even more red at the Bomb than his opponent’s move!) 20. Rh3 Ng8 21. Nf3 Qxf4 22. Ne5 Qg5 23. Bxe4 dxe4 24. Rf4? (This move again made me think of Boris when I showed him a move like this one. “What? You think he not see cheap tactical trick?” Boris asked. Then he laughed uproariously when I answered, “He didn’t!”) 24…Kg7 25. Qe3 Nf6 26. c4 Nh5? (Another blood red move over at the Bomb, with good reason. There is not a Chess teacher who has not informed his student(s), that a “Knight on the rim is grim, or dim, or sometimes both!” The IM was cruising, but let one hand offa the rope momentarily, but still has the game in hand. Unfortunately for him, he now proceeds to loose some of his grip on the rope with that one hand until…) 27. Rxe4 Qxe3+ 28. Rexe3 Bc8 29. Rh4 f4 30. Rd3 Rf5 (The game according to the SF program at the Bomb, is even…It’s anybody’s Chess game now!) 31. Nf2 b6 32. Rhh3 Bb7 33. Rd1 Rg5 (Now white has an advantage! I was following this game in real time over at http://chessstream.com/invitational/ so as to watch the game without analysis and remember thinking, “Go Dominique!” David Spinks was known for saying, “you gotta pull for SOMEBODY!”) 34. Nf3 (Back to even) 34…Ra5 35. a3 Rf5 36. Ne5 Rg5 37. Nf3 Rf5 38. Nh4 Rf7 39. Rhd3 Rc7 40. b3 Rcd7 41. Ng4 g5 42. Nf3 h6? (Redder than red! This is a potentially losing move…) 43. Nge5? (The wrong Knight! Back to even…) 43…Rd6 44. b4 Nf6 45. h3 Ne4 46. a4 Ng3 47. c5 Bxf3 48. Nxf3 bxc5 49. bxc5 Ra6 50. Re1 Kf6 51. Ra1? (Advantage swings back to black…)51…h5 52. a5 Kf5 53. Ra2 Ne4 54. Ne5 Rd5? (A terrible move! Black goes from winning to losing with this move!) 55. g4+ hxg4 56. hxg4+ Kf6 57. Ra4??? (Oh no, Mr. Bill! This is what GM Yasser Seriwan would most definitely call a “howler.” Passed pawns MUST be pushed, and a Rook belongs BEHIND a passed pawn are well known endgame mantras) 57…Nxc5 58. dxc5 Rxe5 59. Rc3 Rc6 60. Rac4 Re2 61. Rd3 Ra2 62. Rd6 Rxd6 63. cxd6 Rxa5 64. Rd4 Rd5 65. Ra4 a5 66. Kf2 e5 67. Kf3 Ke6 68. Ra1 Kxd6 69. Rh1 Rd4 70. Rh6+ Kc5 71. Re6 e4+ 72. Ke2 e3 0-1 (https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2021-charlotte-clt-im/03-Myers_Dominique-Matros_Alexander)

Paulo Bersamina (2378) vs Rogelio Antonio Jr (2474)
Event: ch-PHI 2016
Site: Manila PHI Date: 06/22/2016
Round: 4
ECO: B13 Caro-Kann, exchange variation
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.Bd3 Nc6 5.c3 Qc7 6.Ne2 e6 7.Bf4 Bd6 8.Bxd6 Qxd6 9.O-O Nf6 10.Nd2 e5 11.dxe5 Nxe5 12.Bb5+ Nc6 13.Nc4 Qc7 14.Ne3 Be6 15.Nd4 O-O 16.Bd3 Nxd4 17.cxd4 Qb6 18.Rb1 Rfd8 19.f3 g6 20.Bc2 Bd7 21.Bb3 Bb5 22.Re1 Bc4 23.Bxc4 dxc4 24.Nxc4 Qxd4+ 25.Qxd4 Rxd4 26.Na5 Rd5 27.Nb3 a5 28.Rbd1 a4 29.Rxd5 Nxd5 30.Nc5 a3 31.bxa3 b6 32.Re5 Nf4 33.Nd7 Rxa3 34.g3 Ne6 35.Nxb6 Rxa2 36.Rd5 h6 37.f4 h5 38.Nc4 h4 39.Rd2 ½-½
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?back=1&gid=3998119&m=21

This game is included for historical purposes as it was played in the wonderful mountain city of Hendersonville, a place I once called home earlier this century. David Rupel is from the great Northwest and played “fast and loose” when moving his f-pawn early in the game, which must have flummoxed his opponent.

Alan Kobernat (2101) vs David Rupel (2138)
Event: US Masters op
Site: Hendersonville, NC
Date: 03/18/2006
Round: 6
ECO: B13 Caro-Kann, exchange variation
1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5 4.Bd3 Nc6 5.c3 Qc7 6.Ne2 e6 7.Bf4 Bd6 8.Bxd6 Qxd6 9.O-O f5 10.Re1 Nf6 11.Nd2 O-O 12.Nf3 Ne4 13.Ng3 Bd7 14.Ne5 Nxe5 15.dxe5 Qb6 16.Re2 Nc5 17.Rc2 Be8 18.Bf1 f4 19.Ne2 Bg6 20.Rd2 Ne4 21.Rd4 f3 0-1
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?back=1&gid=3324555&m=19

I hope you enjoy this game as much as did I. Surf on over to ChessBomb and click through it yourself if you want analysis. If you would prefer to view the game and cogitate for yourself, head to Chessstream (http://chessstream.com/Invitational/Games.aspx). I applaud both players, with extra emphasis going to Mr. Myers, who had his chances. I would rather PLAY, and lose, every game played in a tournament if they included chances to win than to meekly acquiesce an early draw any day. A game like this is why I play, and follow, Chess. Sure, it’s tough to lose, but there’s nothing like having your blood boiling while sitting at the board racking your brain in a vain attempt at finding the right move. So what if you’re completely drained and devoid of life after such a game. At least you FEEL SOMETHING, unlike those wussies who continue making short draw after short draw and leave devoid of any feeling whatsoever. THIS GAME IS WHAT CHESS SHOULD BE ABOUT! OK, you lost, but you have a GAME to study; you have a chance to improve; something from which to learn. What do those weak and worthless players who agree to a quick draws learn? My hat is off to Dominigue ‘My Man’ Myers! He pushed it to the limit versus the top rated player in the field.

Dedicated to Duan Watson