Monday, August 11, 2008

US Open Round 8 Game

I did not mention that on August 8th I reached my first anniversary of the Castling Queen Side blog. Thanks to my readers who have given me a lot of encouragement and feedback over this past year. Hopefully I can continue to entertain and “educate” via this blog.

Now back to my regularly scheduled programming: 2008 US Open.

At past US Opens I’ve had a tendency to stay up to play cards with friends after the round. I thought, as I got older I would outgrow such late night forays. However after last year’s Open where I kept leaving relatively early to drive back to my hotel, I think this year I making up for missed time. The more observant reader might have noticed the time stamp on “last night’s” post of 3:30 am. My computer is still on NY time. I’m not sure what time I’m on. Maybe I’m on Honolulu time. Maybe I’m still in Korea.

I’m in multi-task mode at the moment. I’m writing this post offline as I’m sitting in the delegates meeting. By doing it here hopefully I can catch up with my posting without staying up until all hours of the night. Yesterday’s meeting was a rather contentious session. I won’t rehash the details. If one wants to follow the action it was video taped. I did just stop to speak on a proposal that I was a co-sponsor for. Now proposals regarding rules are coming up, so I’m trying to pay attention to the discussion since this is stuff that I actually care about, or have co-sponsored.

Fortunately things are moving along at a much faster rate then yesterday. A number of motions have been withdrawn. I remember my first meeting in 1976 that went on forever and lots of stuff never even got brought up. Things have gotten more streamlined over the years. It’s currently a little after noon. The next round is at 3:00 PM. Hopefully this will end in the next hour. I think I need a nap before my next round. Actually what I really need before the next round is a Rybka implant.

*Sigh* It's after midnight and I never got this post finished. I also never got that nap I was looking for before round 9. The lights in the ballroom are off and there are just a few chess people lurking about. The curtain has been lowered on another US Open. Don't ask me who won. Those guys were in the front of the room I spent my time in the back. Round nine was a rather insipid opposite colored bishop ending where despite being up two pawns I couldn't do a damn thing. He wouldn't move his king off d6 and I had the wrong colored bishop to make him move from that square.

Nothing special about the game. If you want to see it go to Mon Roi. You can also find out who won the tournament. My pathetic 3 points wouldn't even had won the E prize. Some guy with an 1188 rating scored 4 points. To quote Chess Loser "I suck!" I think too much traveling and not enough sleep did me in. I should have known this wasn't going to be a great tournament when the hotel issues me a room key card with fish on it.

Round eight's game was actually pretty interesting. It even rated a diagram in the daily bulletin again. It would be nice if I'd get a win with a diagram in there, but nothing but losses and draws. Actually I would have been happy with a win of any sort. However wins did not come too often in this tournament. In fact I had no wins during the slow time control part of the five-day schedule. My two wins came in rounds two and five which were played at game/60.

Life in the fishbowl sucks. You're in the back of the room and near the doors leading in and out of the playing room. There's a constant flow of people in and out of the room. The doors are constantly being opened and closed. Also talking loudly outside the doors seems to be a favorite pastime amongst players and spectators. "Chess nuts boasting in an open foyer." There is always a constant buzz, so my way of dealing with it is to itune-it out with my iPod. I'd rather be listening to Mozart then hearing the noise from outside. I have to be careful with my music choices because sometimes it's either too energetic or too somber for the moment.

In this particular game the music got a little too energetic. I was deep in thought trying to figure out when he'd would sac his bishop on h6, and whether or not I could accept it or not. Like most highly twitchy chess players I have my little nervous tics that at time I'm totally oblivious to. Sometimes I bounce my legs up and down, but more often then not I'm doing something with my Mon Roi stylus. Usually I'm chewing on it, but this time I had it in my hand. I'm thinking about my move and Jon Haskel who was running the Mon Roi feed stops by my table. He's pointing at my right hand, and saying something to me. Since I had Mozart overtures going I couldn't hear what he was trying to say. I thought he was telling me I was having problems again with my game being broadcast. My round 7 game crapped out in the middle because the pairing output didn't match my Mon Roi profile. It turns out I was tapping the stylus on the table and making noise with it. He wanted me to be aware of the noise I was making. Oops!

I put the stylus down, but I'm having difficulty getting refocused on the position. I walk away from the board on my time to get some water, and bring my head back into the game. I also decided Bach would be a better music choice at this point. The position is complicated and both of us are taking a lot of time. The game next to us had taken 65 moves in the same amount of time it had taken us to make 26 moves. For a change I actually was using most of my time from the 2 hour first time control. Usually I can't sit still that long.

One thing that I have to get over is mentally resigning myself to loss of material or worse. Shortly before time control I had gotten my bishop trapped. There were no squares for it, but with the exchange of rooks on d1, I had a saving move. However because his rook move was unexpected and I didn't look deep enough into how the position had changed after the exchange, I missed the queen move that gains a tempo and freedom for my bishop. I just continued with my plan of getting a pawn for the bishop.

Some people may have looked at my round eight game on Mon Roi, but I'm posting it here with some analysis.


This is my last post from Dallas. I have to get up at the crack of dawn to catch a flight back to New York. When I get home I will write a summary, make some random observations and post a few more pictures.

Signing out from Dallas! Good night. See you back in New York.


Anonymous said...

As a musician I think it's cool that you are listening to Mozart!! Even though I play drums I LOVE classical music!! I have an affinity for Brahms piano works and Schubert string quartets.


Anonymous said...

As a player who has recently suffered through some subpar play and the resulting bleeding of rating points, I can empathize with some of the "I suck!" feelings.

Thanks again for the insight about the tournament. Your reports helped me regain some of my "lust for battle," in a manner of speaking.

Chessaholic said...

I can't listen to music when I play, I just feel like I can think more clearly without my brain having to process other input. Luckily I don't usually get bothered by background noise, unless it's really excessive...

likesforests said...

I guess Internet play at fast time controls (G/15-45) against USCF 1400 players convinced me they don't know anything about strategy. But egads! At rated tournaments where they're prepared and with longer time controls... well, I've got to say your opponent knows how to play a mean kingside assault. I see you were dodging landmines left and right until... well, good show, I wish I could have been there. :)

I hope the 'Charles Fricks' game I played over was from this year!

likesforests said...

And that's a hilarious card key. I wonder how many others noticed. :)

Polly said...

Like: They have a number of different designs on the keys, so not everyone got the fish one. I asked for two keys. I always stick one in my wallet as a back up and then carry the other one in my pocket as the one I use most of the time.

The fish one happened to have been the one I was using on a daily basis. I think it was around Thursday or Friday night that I first noticed the fish, and thought it was amusing given how poorly I was doing. It's moments like these that I need to find humor in the design of the room key. At another tournament I was issued a key with parrots on it which I also found amusing since I constantly have heard "Polly want a cracker?"

BaconLOG said...

Hello Polly Wright! I'm glad you've read the BaconLOG, but I can't help wondering why?!
I can't understand why you can use and exclam and I can't...I'm new at this bloggin' thing and am still learning. Please send me an email. I believe you can find the address located on the page you view with who I am...I've enjoyed reading your blog. It is a different world in the back of the hall. "Chess nuts boasting..." is BEAUTIFUL! Did you come up with it yourself? I gotta find a way to use it! Thought you might like this:Dallas(Jimmie Gilmore)
Did you ever see Dallas from a DC-9 at night?/Well Dallas is a jewel, oh yeah, Dallas is a beautiful sight./And Dallas is a jungle but Dallas gives a beautiful light./Did you ever see Dallas from a DC-9 at night?/Well, Dallas is a woman who will walk on you when you're down./But when you are up, she's the kind you want to take around./But Dallas ain't a woman to help you get your feet on the ground./Yes Dallas is a woman who will walk on you when you're down./Well, I came into Dallas with the bright lights on my mind,/But I came into Dallas with a Dollar and a dime./Dallas is a rich man with a death wish in his eye/A steel and concrete soul with a warm hearted love disguise/A rich man who tends to believe in his own lies/Dallas is a rich man with a death wish in his eyes

Polly said...

Bacon: I came across your blog after reading your comment in the USCF Issues Forum about delegates should have been reading your blog during the meeting. Not being familar with your blog, I had to give it a peek.

I'm not a Blogger expert so I can't explain why you can't put ! or ? in your post titles. Depending on which computer I'm using I'm working either in Firefox or IE. Bothe browsers work fine.

chesschick said...

You do the same thing music-wise that I do. I actually have a 6-hour long chess play list that is mostly Bach Inventions, but also has a little bit of Berlioz, a couple of Beethoven Symphonies, and the Vivaldi Double Cello Concerto. I find it helps me focus better and blocks out the noise.

Polly said...

chess chick: You and I have some similar tastes in music. I also find Sibelius very soothing while I'm playing.