Sunday morning, and now it's time to see if I would be playing in my section or scrounging for a game because I got the bye. Sure enough as expected I had the bye in my section. There were byes in other sections, so it seemed like I would get a game. In round 3 the kid who got the bye in my section played a 1040 who got a bye in the Under 1300 section. I wouldn't want that pairing. I would take my bye and find something else to do until round 5. I could have super mom roll me around one of the museums.
I told Walter I wanted a game if possible. Last year when I got the bye in I was running around looking for somebody to play. This year I just had Donna park me outside the TD room. I figured if I hung out there long enough one of the TDs would find me an opponent. I can be pretty persistent when trying to avoid byes. It was pretty hectic because the directors were trying to get the players to go quietly into the room since the 2-day and under 900 sections were playing already. I just waited patiently hoping for the best. I at least showed restraint by not dropping out of the 3-day schedule and re-entering the 2-day schedule. The thought had crossed my mind, albeit very briefly. I don't believe in re-entries. Really now, what makes me think I would do any better if I started over?
After about 20 minutes one of the directors comes by and tells me I have a game. I'm playing Black against a kid rated 1796 who opted to play up in the under 2100 section. We're playing on my new assigned board. Finally I feel like I'm actually in the tournament. I have players sitting to my right and across the aisle that row is also full. These players are in the under 1900 section. I don't know what scores they have. It didn't really matter since for that round I was playing in the under 2100 section. I was getting the full point bye in my section which would mean regardless of what happened in this game the "wall chart castling" would stop at 0 0 0. Fitting for someone who calls her blog "Castling Queen Side".
I don't think my opponent had ever seen 7...Qa5 in the Accelerated Dragon before. If he had, he would played 8. 0-0 immediately. Instead he spent 15 minutes coming up with 8. Nb3. I played 8...Qb4. He spent another 20 minutes on 9. Bd3. Having sat through 35 minutes on two moves in the opening I was getting antsy already. Inside I was screaming, "IT'S THE OPENING!! JUST MAKE A MOVE!" At least after that much time he didn't play Qd3 which loses a piece to Ne5. It's so rare that I actually see this line that I forgot that I still have 9...Nxe4. Instead I played the very timid 9...b6. I think I was recalling one of my Thursday night screw ups where I allowed Bc5 trapping my queen.
I knew this was going to be a long round since my opponent spent almost an hour on his first 10 moves. Under normal circumstances I would have been out of my seat, wandering around the tournament room, and checking out what my friends were doing. Even though I could get up and walk around if I wanted to, it was a bit of a production, and too much like work. Instead I figured this was a good exercise in patience and concentration. Breaking an ankle was not exactly what I had in mind for dealing with my ADHD issues at the board, however might as well make the best of the situation. Though despite how focused I may have appeared on the outside, my thoughts weren't completely about this game. I was thinking about what I would blog, watching the games next to me, and asking myself when is he going to move?
So here is the game.
This is an example of a game being played between two people who have gotten off to a poor start. We're 0-3 in our respective sections, and it's almost like neither of us is willing to take chances because we don't want to lose. The one time I did play for material gain on move 24, I miscalculated and it ended out being a series of even trades. My opponent was using a lot more time then me. In the mean time many games were finishing up. I was thinking we had been playing a really long time, but then I remembered we started around 20 minutes later then everyone else. I was concerned that we would hold up the round if we went the full six hours.
When we got to the 40th move he had 01:41 left on his clock and I had 39:33. I was moving faster then I had in round three. Usually I slow down as the tournament goes on, but I was restless. We only played another 5 moves after that, but the game lasted almost another hour. When I offered the draw I had a big advantage on the clock. However there was nothing happening in the position. I have a passed pawn, but it's isolated and sitting back on e6. He can't win it and I can't push it. We're just going to fiddle around with our rooks and minor pieces. While working on this I let Fritz analyze the final position. Every line was 0.00.
It felt good to finally do something besides lose. It wasn't a win, but I'll take drawing as Black against an 8th grade kid with a rating close to 1800. I also got the bye out of the way, and would not have to think about the possibility again.