Friday, February 29, 2008

Friday Funnies

This is not a new weekly feature to supplement Wacky Wednesday. When one feels like crap, is bored silly, whose brain is mush and has nothing better to do, a little low brow blogging does the trick. If you want deep thought and high brow blogging go read Transformation's latest post. If your brain is ready for the weekend, then pull up a chair. You've come to the right spot.

We're into round three of Tournament of LEPers. No huge surprises at the top so far. Donnie decided we needed to spice things up with some trash talk on the comments portion. We are a pretty mild mannered bunch of bloggers if you ask me. No great smack downs or flame wars. I guess since we're not a forum with trolls lurking about, things are pretty tame. However in honor of Donnie's trash talk efforts, I have posted a few comics from my collection of chess related stuff. I apologize for the marginal quality of the scans.

Being the only female in this tournament, I thought this second comic was appropriate. However last night all this hen delivered was a rotten egg.

At the USATE they give out an upset prize each round. One year I had the misfortune of being on the losing end, not only for the round, but for the entire tournament. In the Chess Life article that year they listed the prizes. When they mentioned the biggest upset, they printed my opponent's name and mentioned that he beat an unnamed 1800 player to protect the guilty. Fortunately since both our scoresheets were total gibberish it did not get published. Through the years I've actually had three games of mine published in Chess Life. All losses. Before I retire from chess, I'd like to get a win published there. I guess I shouldn't complain. Many patzers like me have never had a game published in Chess Life.

This year the biggest upset occurred in the first round. A 1232 lost to a 233 for a 999 point upset. They post the scoresheets on a board behind the results table. I copied down the moves because I was curious as to what a game between a 1200 and 200 was like. Today I finally got around to sticking it into Chess Base. Some of the notation was a little sketchy, but I think I got all the moves in correctly. I have no idea what the ages were of the two players, but I was actually impressed that the 200 didn't hang anything. Some of her moves were very passive, but white didn't take advantage of them.

White's 28. Nxe5 was interesting. Was it a valid sacrifice try with his follow up of 29. d6? I was impressed that black found 29...Qe8 to hold against Bxf7+. Black should have played 31...Be6 instead of Qe6. When white played 32. Rxf7 I was thinking "Isn't the queen hanging on a2?" Then I realized that if black takes the queen she gets mated with Rxf8. After the queens were traded I liked how she brought her king back towards the middle to counter any slight play he might have with e and d pawns.

I don't know whether white had resigned or might have lost on time after black's 37th move. It's pretty hopeless for white with the queens and a pair of rooks off the board, however if I outrated my opponent by 1000 points I might be inclined to make her prove to me that she could mate with the two bishop advantage. He may not have realized that she was only rated 233. Obviously she was aware of the rating difference since she submitted the game for biggest upset. Actually I probably shouldn't say obviously. The year I was on the losing end of the biggest upset, I was the one who told my opponent that the game would probably win the upset prize for the round.


OrangeKing said...

Hi! I can fill in some of the details from that USATE upset - it was my girlfriend who won the game. I believe her opponent was also a young adult. He did lose on time, but as I put it, it was "resigning on the clock" - he took his last few minutes to look for complications, couldn't find any, and was flagged.

I don't think she was actually aware of the biggest upset prize, but I made a copy of her scoresheet (sorry if my handwriting was messy!), and we handed it in. Her rating, of course, is definitely on the way up; I'd estimate she's somewhere around an 800-900 strength player at the moment, and still rising (though neither of us would have guessed that before USATE).

As an aside, I made her prove she could win the game from the point at which it stopped that night, and she did with without any problems. :)

Emily said...

Rating's over 450 now after USATE. And going up still!

Polly said...

Orange: Thanks for filling me in on the details. It was very clear from how Emily played that she's much better then that low rating indicated. I guessed from looking at the tournaments that she's been playing in that she was not a little kid.

Actually your handwriting was fine, it was just some of the moves didn't quite make sense as I was putting it into chess base. I think when one is working from a copy of a copy, things get lost in the transcription.

I figured it was a "clock resignation" given what move # it stopped on. I figure an adault could have won that game. I teach chess to young kids, and some of them would probably have difficulty winning even with all that material.

Emily: Congratulations on a nice gain at the USATE. Keep up the good work. I'm sure before long you'll be hitting the 4 digit barrier.

Thanks for stopping by! :-)