Thursday, June 23, 2011


If you have access to ChessBase Light, ChessBase, Fritz, etc. you might go for a CD of bone crushing games by the inimitable IM, and Tartar, Rashid Nezhmetdinov. Yes, he is the guy who beat Polugaevsky with one of the most mind-bending Queen sacrifices ever, and GM Polu was heard to say, in effect, "This game will be all over the world!"

And, it was.

Today a reseller asked me if I had any copies of Super Nezh. Guess that says something about the last time they ordered something from me. That book has been OP for years. But I did something I've been threatening to do, I took all the games that were prepared for the software edition, and burned it to a CD in the ChessBase Format. I took out Pishkin's annotations if he annotated the game only by himself. There are a lot of people chiming in including me. I was on a streak once where I did a slew of his games but there are many more which you might want to annotate yourself!

His games seldom disappointed.

This CD contains 453 games or game fragments, and a big batch of them are unannotated. I was told there is someone who had about 500 games, but I have never seen evidence of it, so let's say this is a "monster collection." Pre-lim price is $25.00 + $3.50 for USA shipping. If you wait a bit, it will be $34.95 plus shipping! Don't wait. The discs have been printed but I haven't designed the box yet. Coming up.

Fact: most would do nothing except ask, "What is it?"

I was married to a woman in the early 90s who was absolutely crazy about Wayne Newton. She would've climbed over a mountain of glass to see him perform. She had seen him a few times and loved his show. She took me when he was in town one time and we were sitting in the FRONT ROW! During one of his performances he comes over and asks me, "Are you enjoying yourself?" I said "I am." He reached out and bent slightly to shake my hand. I didn't have the presence of mind to have him shake her hand instead! He thought I wasn't having a good time because my arms were crossed (I do that all the time, it is false body language). It was a good show, but it would have created a lasting memory for HER! Today I would do it differently. Too late!

She wasn't teeny-bopper crazy, she just thought his show was the best and would do whatever it took to go.

Tonight I heard from our Last Chess Clinic friend Martin Stafford who started asking questions about airports in Minnesota, and the Red Wing event. He said there was a .005% chance he could make it, but... I happen to know that there was a 5% chance he would make it to the Last Chess Clinic in October. New Zealand is a lot further away than say, Indiana.

But he loves the excitement and enchantment.

Perhaps I have only myself to blame. I didn't hype Yermolinsky right, or enough. I didn't get people excited enough to come see him; they've seen his name before. A two-time US Champion? So what? How many of us even know a US Champion from personal experience, a handshake, whatever? Being a US Chess Champion is a lot harder than being 7 foot tall and stuffing a basketball (for years I've advocated a 13 foot height for the rim so we could see some real skill).

What makes Yermolinsky incredible is that here is a GUY who knows what the heck he is talking about. If you've read even only a few chapters of his book The Road to Chess Improvement (out of print) you'll know why in 2004 he told me he had no more books to write because he couldn't think of anything more!! With the exception of a couple small opening manuals for Gambit, he HASN'T written anything more in the "how to" or "improve" line.

But if you come to the Red Wing event July 29-30, you can hear him, and see him play (you). He will Q&A too. But more than all that, you will be meeting a real maestro, a grand maestro. He doesn't do this kind of thing often. When I was walking the tournament halls in Denver about 6-7 years ago  as we passed he said, "Hi Bob." He's friendly and approachable. But what was really great was 2004 when we had asked Dr. Karsten Mueller to come visit the Chess Festival but he couldn't because it turned out he had a brain tumor which would not allow him to fly in high-altitude jets to get here. When we found this out John Donaldson (who came to the 2002 event) recommended Yermolinsky to fill his place, and Alex came!

So what would make you come? Maybe you've been thinking about it. Maybe you want to come, but are holding out to see if "something better" might come along. You never know what you might've missed until you no longer have a chance at it.

Once I was described as that type of person whose "reach exceeds his grasp." Or as Will Shakespeare once wrote, "If not, what is heaven for?" It's all about reaching your potential, getting rid of excuses, and having a good time. Some feel guilty about that.

It can all be done on a credit card and how long will it take you to pay it off? As one person said to me, "If you are used to going to Starbucks frequently, by cutting back right there you could do that in no time." (Howard Schultz is already a multi-gazillionaire.)

I once queried Walt Disney's aspirations. Was he a Man or a Mouse? Yes, he was a Man, but he made a lot of dough because of that Mouse.



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