Friday, February 24, 2012


Friday, 8 p.m. $25. That's what it costs to enter Kevin Hyde's chess tournament at the Lodge in Bettendorf, Iowa. I'll be there tonight because I don't want to get up early this Saturday morning and play three games in 1 day. A nice alternative Kevin, thanks.

If readers know anything about the midwest we were hit with snow, drizzle, probably some icy conditions too last night. As I look out my office window it is white everywhere except for the streets where cars have been. No sun, just cloudy, limiting the vitamin D which "rains down."

Hope you can make it. Unless it gets worse, which I don't think it is supposed to, I will be there.

Shoring Up
Haven't played chess, rated, in a while, this will either show what I know or don't know, and where the weak spots are. Last night I was reading a book I have never read before and wish I had. It would have helped save me a lot of blood and sweat. Capablanca's Chess Fundamentals.

When I was younger I thought of Jose as a sort of pompous chess guy because I was a big Lasker fan. Lasker's conditions for a WCC title match were a little too strenuous. Capablanca wouldn't fight anyone until Alekhine and his backers came up with the prize loot. Everyone has their problems including you and I. As I got older I realized Capa was was just a terrific player and chess ambassador. Even more so, his books explains well but the layout, the continuous and long paragraphs interspersed with Descriptive Notation makes reading the book an unqualified dreary process. I want to see if I can do something about that.

The Black Gold Card
Lots of good news is being withheld until, like Baron Munchausen, all the "ducks are in a row." In the meantime more Black Gold Cards are being sold as we gear up for a great 2012. The Chess Butler is closing in on last year's numbers and have some new additions. Having a Black Gold Card (and I was "talking" to the maker of an actual card yesterday) is finally some "recognition" to chess as a mental bloodsport worth noting. I am trying to look for an alternate supplier of such club membership cards because it looks like ONE company has all the business and they dot the web with many different names. They have all kinds of sales people and so you know someone, somewhere, must be out there that can supply said cards at a much more reasonable price than $200 for 500 cards (!)

In the meantime you can contact me at:

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