The Ironman Chess Club

The Ironman Chess Club began over nineteen years ago by the self-proclaimed “Legendary Georgia Ironman,” Tim Brookshear.

During that time the club has met on the first and third Tuesday evening of each month. The first location was in the Church of Decatur Heights, which was a nice location because of the large meeting area, and better yet, ancillary rooms for parents to use while their children played Chess. Unfortunately, times changed and as the older people left they were replaced by new people, some of whom could not understand using the space for anything other than worship a nebulous entity that may, or may not, be. Although the Ironman’s parents had attended the church Tim preferred playing in the fourth round of a weekend Swiss tournament. “Bacon,” he would say, “Chess is my church.” The old pastor left and was replaced. The club continue meeting, but there was this one particularly nasty “church lady,” no doubt filled with the spirit, who wanted what she considered the blasphemous Chess players eradicated. The woman, may she burn in Hell, got her wish and the club had to be moved. The new location was the North Dekalb Mall. For many years the club met in the food court, which was a trip, what with all the passersby and attendant noise. Still, it was free and you cannot beat free, especially when it comes to Chess. This lasted some years before the mall began losing tenants. Near the end there was only one restaurant open in the once bustling food court, but still the Ironman CC continued meeting twice a month. Then there were none, and the mall stopped turning on the main lights. There was still a modicum of light and the ICC continued meeting. The roof began leaking, but still the ICC met. One father would bring his three boys all the way from the north side, which was something because the Ironman began at six pm. The traffic that time of day is a nightmare on a good day. People new to Chess would somehow find the club. GCA board members would come to play, along with absolute beginners and those of Master strength. The Ironman Chess Club was certainly sui generis.

Then one evening an obviously mentally deranged woman screamed and hit her child, which was in a stroller, and stayed there most of the evening, screaming and slapping the poor child. The Ironman lost more than several regulars after that meeting. The woman caused the Ironman to move into the back room of Challengers, an game store owned by a nice fellow, Tony, who had actually played youth Chess while in school. There was enough room for a couple of dozen players in the back room, which was used for gaming and storage.

The last meeting of the Ironman CC held at the North Dekalb Mall was March 19, the second Tuesday of the month. For obvious reasons only a few people attended. I was not one of them. The mall finally closed and could not meet this past Tuesday, April 7, 2020. Yet there was a meeting, of sorts, of the Ironman Chess Club…

After having mentioned another game to show the Ironman earlier I had found another, making two games for me to “present” the Ironman. Tim said, “The Ironman may not be meting tonight but I intend on sitting down at the board to study Chess. How about you showing me one of those games you said you wanted me to see tonight, Mike?” Wa-la, a meeting of the Ironman CC!

Many of, if not most of you readers may have seen this game, but it was not in the Ironman’s purview. I urge you to play over the game the old fashioned way, on a board with pieces while covering the moves in order to see the beauty of the game, which would have made Mikhail Tal proud. Look at it from the black perspective in an attempt to find the moves made by GM Vitaliy Bernadskiy. When first starting out in Chess the Kings Indian Defense was my main defense against 1 d4, because Bobby played the KID. I liked the way black could use a slow build up to attack white. Later I moved on to the Grunfeld, before moving on to the Dutch, specifically, the Leningrad Dutch, as regular readers must certainly know…

Marc Narciso Dublan (2516)

https://i1.wp.com/www.tabladeflandes.com/fotos-campeones/marc-narciso.jpg

vs Vitaliy Bernadskiy (2593)

https://images.chesscomfiles.com/uploads/v1/user/21086014.0ec5cd10.160x160o.9639b50b4201.jpeg

8th Lorca Open 2019 Spain

12/29/2019

E60 King’s Indian defence

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.f3 Bg7 4.e4 O-O 5.Nc3 c6 6.Be3 d6 7.Nge2 a6 8.c5 Nbd7 9.cxd6 exd6 10.Ng3 b5 11.Be2 c5 12.O-O cxd4 13.Bxd4 Bb7 14.Re1 Rc8 15.Bf1 Re8 16.Rc1 Ne5 17.Qb3 h5 18.Nh1 Nxf3+ 19.gxf3 Nxe4 20.fxe4 Bxd4+ 21.Nf2 Qh4 22.Rc2 Rxc3 23.bxc3 Qg5+ 24.Bg2 Rxe4 25.Kf1 Qxg2+ 26.Kxg2 Rxe1+ 27.Ne4 Bxe4+ 28.Kg3 Rg1+ 0-1
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?gid=4246334

Narciso Dublan v Bernadskiy

1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 g6 3 f3 (What would Ben Finegold say? Stockfish prefers 3 Nc3. Who am I to argue?) 3…Bg7 (Komodo and Houdini play 3…c5. Wonder what the Fish plays?) 4 e4 O-O (SF 9 @depth 40 plays 4…c5, a move not shown at the CBDB; SF 11 @depth 47 plays 4…d6, by far the most often played move) 5 Nc3 (SF 160919 @depth 43 the seldom played 5 Be3; SF 11 @depth 31 plays the game move, the most often seen according to the CBDB) 5…c6 (SF, along with 98% of the games contained at the CBDB plays 5..d6) 6 Be3 (The move played by Komodo and far and away the most often played move, but, wouldn’t you know it, Stockfish shows the little played 6 Bd3 as best) 6…d6 (The most often played move at the CBDB, but over at 365Chess the weaker players prefer 6…d5) 7 Nge2 (The Stockfish move, but Komodo 10 @depth 28 plays the most often played move, 7 Qd2. Komodo 13.02 @depth 32 plays 7 Qc2. The databases contain only one game, if it can be called a game, with the move:

Gerhard Schroll (2387) v Zahar Efimenko (2677)

14th Euro Indiv 2013 Legnica POL 05/07/2013

E81 King’s Indian, Saemisch, 5…O-O

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3 O-O 6.Be3 c6 7.Qc2 a6 8.Nge2 b5 9.c5 dxc5 10.dxc5 ½-½
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?back=1&gid=3850623&m=14)

7…a6 (The CBDB contains 606 games with 7…e5. There are 193 games with 7…a6, yet SF plays 7…Nbd7, of which there are only 25 examples) 8 c5 (The most often played move at both the CBDB & 365Chess, but only Komodo 13.01 @depth 34 plays it. The same program going deeper to depth 38 plays 8 Qd2. SF 251219 @depth 46 plays 8 a4) 8…Nbd7 (SF approves) 9 cxd6 ( SF 251219 plays 9 Qc2, a move not shown at the CBDB or 365Chess. Komodo plays the most often played move, 9 Qd2. Deep Fritz, though, does play the move played in the game) 9…exd6 10 Ng3 (SF 251219 @depth 44 plays 10 Nf4, the most often played move at the CBDB, albeit in a limited number of games. Komodo plays 10 Qd2, while Houdini plays a TN-10 g4)

Vitezslav Priehoda, (2330) vs Marcel Kanarek (2476)

Prague International Open 02/19/2020

E81 King’s Indian, Saemisch, 5…O-O

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 Bg7 4.e4 d6 5.f3 O-O 6.Nge2 a6 7.Be3 c6 8.c5 Nbd7 9.cxd6 exd6 10.Ng3 b5 11.Be2 c5 12.O-O Bb7 13.Rc1 cxd4 14.Bxd4 Bh6 15.Rc2 Re8 16.Bd3 b4 17.Na4 d5 18.Re2 Bf4 19.exd5 Bxd5 20.Rxe8+ Qxe8 21.Re1 Qb8 22.Nf1 Qd6 23.Be3 Bxa2 24.Bxf4 Qxf4 25.Be4 Rd8 26.Nc5 Qc7 27.Nxd7 Rxd7 28.Qa4 Qb6+ 29.Ne3 Be6 30.Kh1 Nxe4 31.fxe4 Rd2 32.h3 Rxb2 33.Qe8+ Kg7 34.Qe7 Qd4 35.Rf1 Ra2 36.Nd5 Bxd5 37.exd5 Qxd5 0-1
https://www.365chess.com/game.php?gid=4256857

Bernadskiy Sacrifices The House – Narciso vs Bernadskiy, 2019

Another Game of the Year? | Narciso Dublan vs Bernadskiy | Lorca 2019

https://www.chessbomb.com/arena/2019-lorca-open/07-Narciso_Dublan_Marc-Bernadskiy_Vitaliy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 2019 Mr. Phillip Taylor Georgia State Chess Championship

The 2019 Mr. Phillip Taylor GA State Championship begins in a month, May 17 through May 19, 2019. Who is Mr. Phillip Taylor? Chess tournaments in Georgia have usually been named after someone who has left the board. Since I have been around about as long as anyone involved with Chess in Georgia and was unfamiliar with Mr. Taylor, I reached out to former POTGCA Scott Parker with an inquiry. Mr. Parker replied,

Michael,

I believe it is because of a financial commitment, but I don’t know the details. If you want to email the full board to see who might know use gcaboard@georgiachess.org. That reaches all board members. And Mr. Taylor is very much alive and kicking. That much I do know.

Best Regards,

Scott

After forwarding the above to every board member only one reply was received, from 2nd Member-at-large Anna Baumstark, who wrote:

Hi,
I wasn’t on the board for the last State Championship, but I believe that Phil donates to the GCA each year to help defray the cost of the
tournament.

Thanks,
Anna

Having a desire to play Chess, in addition to a desire to meet Mr. Philip Taylor, sent me to the website to learn the particulars of the tournament, which can be found at: http://www.georgiachess.org/event-3086683. There is also a PDF if interested: http://www.georgiachess.org/resources/Documents/2018-2019%20Open/2019%20Georgia%20State%20%20Championship.pdf

Basically it is a one hundred dollars to play, one hundred dollars to stay kind of tournament. There are various time controls for the different sections, but the only one that matters is the “40/90, SD/30, d10″ for the Championship section. I prefer the added time of usually 30 seconds.

The 3-day schedule has two games, the first and third, to begin at 7:30 PM. Since I will not again attempt playing Chess at night in a tournament that would mean I could take two half-point byes, which are allowed, but only in rounds 1 thru 4 (limit two) and must request before Round One, with (absolutely) no changes afterwards!

I then found the website of the hotel in which the tournament would be played, the Radisson Atlanta Northwest, located at 1775 Parkway Pl SE, Marietta. This means the playing site is not accessible via MARTA, the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, the absolutely best way to get around Atlanta because the train moves when traffic comes to a halt. Although there is a bus system in Cobb county, where the city of Marietta is located, word on the street is it pales in comparison to MARTA and the Gwinnett county bus system. It is well known the traffic situation in Atlanta is horrible. The northern part of Atlanta known as Buckhead has recently considered the possibility of charging people who drive into that particular part of the city in order to relieve congestion. One official said, “Ninety percent of people who work in Buckhead do not live in the city.” I lived and worked in what was known as “The Head” in the 1970’s and 80’s when it was a community and there were affordable places for employees to live. Now only the wealthy can afford to live in “The Head.” As Atlanta continues to grow more people will utilize only public transportation like many people who live in New York City and never own, or even drive, a car. This should be taken into consideration by the GCA board.

A search for comments by former quests of the Radisson Atlanta Northwest, followed. Phil G. from Knoxville, TN., posted his review on 3/30/2019, giving the Radisson only one star out of a possible five, writing, “The only reason I gave this one lace a 1 star is because I couldn’t give it NEGATIVE stars.
This is the worst hotel I have ever been to. We were in the area for a Baseball tournament and our entire team booked here. One room had bugs in the bed and throw up in the floor, literally chunks of vomit in the middle of the floor. One room had the water running in the tub and it wouldn’t turn off. We had a total of 9 rooms and of the 9, eight of them didn’t have towels when we checked in. If the other area hotels weren’t booked we would have went somewhere else. Out of the 9 rooms, 7 had to change rooms because of filth or because something didn’t work, shower, TV, door locks. When our kids went to swim in the pool, we asked the front desk for towels and the said “get them from your room”, after we just told them there were NO TOWELS IN THE ROOMS!
The hotel employees acted like none of this was important and offered NO compensation for the dirty rooms and bad service. The hotel lobby was full of leaves and the trash cans were over flowing. The hotel is next door to a really trashy nightclub, might have been a strip club by the looks of the way people were dressed going in. Sharing the same parking lot as a night club lead to coming out to your car in a parking lot covered in trash.
DONT STAY HERE, save your money. This is NOT a typical Radisson.”
Phil G.
Knoxville, TN

Ouch!

A few days earlier, 3/27/2019, E T. of West Hollywood, CA, gave the hotel two stars when writing the following:

So many things went wrong with this stay and I don’t know where to even begin except to say that I never in my life stayed at a Radisson Hotel nor will I again. Oddly enough, I encountered no service issues during my stay … it was just the overall grime and yuck factor of this hotel and quite frankly it’s clientele which turned me off.

When we pulled in, there were some shady characters in the parking lot. These folks did not look like the type who would pay $120 per night for a hotel. They looked more like vagrants. However, low and behold they were staying there. Also, there is a REALLY sketchy dance club next door called Tiger Tiger. Imagine any gangstah rap video you’ve ever seen before and that is who frequent this dance club. They must offer deeply discounted rooms on an app because the hotel is filled with people staying there who are going to the club next door.

The hallways looked like a combination of a frat party/rap video. People were screaming in the hallways, walking around with red solo cups and playing loud music. The rooms have connecting doors and the walls are pretty thin, so I could hear everything in the next room like it was in my room. Loud teens and 20-something year olds everywhere. It was like staying in a college dorm room.

The hotel has seen better days … the windows to the room were crusted with white stains and you couldn’t really see out. There was a sliding balcony door which to a small balcony with no furniture which was shared with the room next door. It looked like the floor could give out at any moment.

To say the carpet was old and filthy would be an understatement. I wore shoes the whole time in the room. The overall feel of the room was a hotel from the 2003-era. Same furniture I remember, draperies, color scheme as early 2000/late 1990s hotels. The lobby seems to be where they put their money … it’s all brand new and beautiful. They have an odd little restaurant/bar which looks like it has never been cleaned and by closing time at 11 p.m. on a Friday, they were out of every beer on tap.

Next door, the club music booms until 3:30 a.m. and if your room is located on the front side of the building facing the parking lot, you’ll hear it all night long through your window. There is no escaping the sound of booming club music, so if you are a light sleeper … you will be a non-sleeper. After the music stops, you then have drunks in the parking lot making noise which comes up into the hallways and rooms.

It seemed like there were a LOT of problems with guests that were do to the overall shadiness of those who stayed there. Often we would hear people yelling at the front desk people … and twice we noticed police cars pulled up outside the hotel. This was during a 24 hour long stay.

Avoid this hotel unless you are going to get your groove on at Tiger Tiger … or really miss going to college in the 1990s in which case, staying here will be a trip down memory lane. The only reason I left 2 stars is because the front desk staff was helpful and friendly.

E “On the road again” T.
West Hollywood, CA

Parking lot from balcony minus the shady vagrants

Clubs right next door equals no sleep due to loud music

https://www.yelp.com/biz/radisson-hotel-atlanta-marietta-marietta

This hotel does not sound like one conducive to playing good Chess, or obtaining a good night’s sleep. After doing due diligence I have decided against playing in the event. It would seem that with the additional money donated to the tournament by Mr. Taylor a decent venue could have been found.

I do not know who is responsible for the decision to have the tournament at this particular hotel, especially considering the plethora of hotels in the greater Atlanta area, but it is obvious someone, or some group of people did not do their due diligence. I do not know why many Chess tournaments in the greater Atlanta area have been, and obviously continue to be, held in second, or even third rate, run down hotels, but I have played Chess in Atlanta since 1970 and, unfortunately, this hotel is not an exception. For example, the legendary Georgia Ironman, Tim Brookshear, who has been playing almost as long as this writer, likes to tell the story of the first Sweat-box Open, which was held at the Biltmore hotel in downtown Atlanta during a hot summer and there was no air conditioning. Sweat-box number two (and 2a, 2b, 2c, etc.) were held at the House of Pain, aka, The Dump, which was the old Atlanta Chess and Game Center. The Dump was known for an air conditioning system held together who knows how by Longshot Larry, defying law, rules and regulations, and the law of physics, that was down as much as it was up. When a window unit stopped putting out cold air it was usually replaced by a much smaller unit. The latest incarnation of the sweat-box Open was at the North Dekalb Mall a few summers ago when a tournament was played completely sans AC. The stench overwhelmed the senses while making eyes sting.

Having participated in Backgammon tournaments and visited both Scrabble and Bridge tournaments in the Atlanta area which were held in good conditions in nice hotels I cannot help but wonder why it is only Chess tournaments in Atlanta that have had such problems.

Throwdown Thursday & Friday Night Fights!

The Legendary Georgia Ironman has informed me Life Master Brian McCarthy will be coming up from Butler, Ga. to play in the July 10 Thursday Night Throwdown. Brian was rated over 2400 in the 90’s. Come on down to the the North Dekalb Mall, located at the southwest intersection of N. Druid Hills Road and Lawrenceville Highway at 2050 Lawrenceville Highway Decatur, Georgia 30033, and try to take a bite out of the Big Mac! The first round begins at 7:00pm.
Tim Brookshear is also holding a one day mini-camp at the site of the Throwdown beginning Thursday morning. The Ironman can be reached at 770 633 6718.
Kevin Schmuggerow will host the Friday Night Fights at the North Georgia Chess Center (http://www.northgachesscenter.com/).
NGC G/30 Tournaments– Friday Nights! July 11th, 25th; August 8th, 22nd
3-SS G/30;d5 Sections; Open & Reserve (may combine into one section at directors discretion)
Location: North Georgia Chess Center, 2450 Atlanta Highway Suite 201, Cumming GA 30040.
Rounds: 1st round starts at 7:00 PM. (1/2 point bye available if requested before round 1)
Entry Fee: $10.00 NGCC Members; $17.00 Non-Members. All payments due onsite, cash, check and credit cards accepted.
Registration: Friday – 6:00 PM – 6:45 PM (by phone, email or in person).
Kevin will also hold a quad Sunday, July 13, and another August 24.
NGCC G/60 Quads – July 13th and August 24th
3-RR G/60; d5 (4 player sections by rating)
Location: North Georgia Chess Center, 2450 Atlanta Highway Suite 201, Cumming GA 30040.
Rounds: 1st -10:00AM; 2nd -1:00PM; 3rd – 3:30PM;
Entry Fee: $25.00 NGCC Members; $32.00 Non-Members. All payments due onsite, cash, check and credit cards accepted.
Prize Fund: 50% of member entry fee to 1st Place in each Quad.
Registration: 9:00AM – 9:45AM
For those of you north of Atlanta, the NGCC is located north about 30-40 miles north of Atlanta, which would put those of you who cannot get enough chess and want to play in two events that much closer to home.