Monday, September 14, 2009

Memorable Game 6: My First Ever Half Point, W. Barr - RLP 01.06.82 1/2 - 1/2

Having played at the Reno Chess Club for a few months in the fall of 1981, I was persuaded to give the City Championship a try. It was quite an experience...I lost the first six games, then managed this exciting draw, lost three more to finish out the Championship qualifier, then went to a weekend tournament at Lake Tahoe and lost four more. One draw in 14 tournament games. To show how strong the competition was, my first published rating came in at 1198, which I've used in the header of the game below, though I wasn't rated at the time.

I will freely admit that I took about three months away from tournament play, and most chess of any kind, after this string of shellackings. A few of the guys at the club talked me back into coming, telling me I was actually pretty good, I was getting better and would start winning some. They were right! I did finally start to win a few games in the summer and the rest, as they say, was history.

Probably every player fondly remembers his or her first tournament point or half-point. Considering the amount of losses that were sandwiched around it, a very memorable game indeed!

William Barr was quite an old guy at the time of this game--I suppose well into his 70s. I think he got in a revenge victory on me sometime later. Good for him, hopefully I'll still be slugging it out in tournaments when I'm 75 or so.

Not a great game of chess, but considering I only make one real blunder, not too bad for a beginner.

(show chess board)(hide chess board)

Thursday, September 03, 2009

A Message of Hope

(NOTE: For the record, I did not write the copy below. It is one of those things passed along through the Tubes until the origin is hidden in the mists. All hele to whoever did put it together!)

I seldom pass along inspirational stuff, but this one got to me.
I believe, in these difficult and mean-spirited times in which we
live, there needs to be a message of Hope.

We can all use a single image that speaks to us of love, harmony,
peace and joy.

An image that suggests the universality of us all.

I have been sent that image, and I want to share it with you all.
All I ask that all of you take a moment to reflect on it.


Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Memorable Game 5: My Biggest Upset and First Victory over a Class A

My previous "Memorable Games" have been from the period 1986-87 when I was already around Class B strength. The following game, played after about 18 months of serious tournament chess experience, was more of an upset in that my opponent was rated 601 points higher, and I don't think I had won against anyone over about 1600 before this.

LaRoy O'Doan was around the Expert level at his peak, and I played him just a couple of years ago in Reno, though of course 25 years later and after some health problems he wasn't as strong and I managed to win two more games with him.

In this game, I play quite well for someone so inexperienced; in fact, I don't think I could play it much better today!

(show chess board)(hide chess board)