Tuesday, January 7, 2014

2013 2nd Quarter April Fools!

As promised or perhaps threatened is a better choice of word, a game from the first quarter of 2013.  Technically the game is from the start of the 2nd quarter.  It was played on April 1st, but since it was from the Grand Pacific Open that started on March 29th I'm including as part of the first quarter.

Spoiler alert!  Skip to the game if you don't want to know how it ended before the end.  Otherwise feel free to read on. 

I can't blame this train wreck on time pressure.  For the most part Game/90 with a 30 second increment does not lead to insane time scrambles I've experienced in Thursday Night "Cracktion".  Perhaps if I had 10 seconds left then maybe my move could be excused.  I had over 10 minutes left, and I spent almost two minutes on the final move.  My opponent on the other hand used less then a minute to respond.  I suppose losing a game in this manner was very fitting for April 1st.  My last move certainly had all the makings of a great April Fools joke.  Unfortunately getting mated is no joke.

End of spoiler. Let the game begin.

I can't even begin the explain what the heck happened there.  I totally outplayed my opponent the entire game, but couldn't quite finish him off.  I can't even blame it on being over confident because I had a crushing position.  I've done that many times in the past and did it a few times in 2013.  Some things just never change.  In this game I think I became fixated on Black's pinned rook and forgot about his queen.

No USCF rating points were harmed in the making of this disastrous tournament.  I think my Canadian rating took such a hit that I don't even show up on the CFC website.  I'm not sure why that is since I've played in the tournament 4 times which means I should have a Canadian rating based on 24 games.  When I do a cross table search on the event nothing comes up.  Maybe all these chess trips to Victoria have been a figment of my imagination.  Silly me.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Random Thoughts on the 1st Quarter of 2013.

A belated Happy New Year. Merry 11th day of Christmas. 

On the 11th day of Christmas my true love brought to me......

11 mates in one.  Nope that's not right.

I kept telling myself I would write more in 2013, but some how it did not happen.  Then again maybe it was because my chess wasn't all that interesting.  I started the year at 1747 and finished the year sitting on my floor of 1700.  Hitting more floor is nothing new, I've done it a ton of times.  In 2013 I lost, gained and lost those 47 points a number of times.  It’s kind of like yo-yo dieting. Lose weight, gain it back.  Lose it again, gain it back again.  Most yo-yo dieters spend many months losing the weight, and then bam! Go back to normal eating and gain the weight and then some in half the time.  I do rating points the opposite way.   I’m doing the rating point diet.  It takes me forever to gain rating points, and takes me no time at all to have a crappy tournament and chuck them all away.

Actually it took awhile to lose the 36 rating points I gained on 2012 New Years Eve.  That's because my 1st rated event after that was the US Amateur Team East where I tossed 15 of them by going 2-4 on Board 2.  Our team went 3-3.  Some how we never seem to mange to win that last round to get the plus score.  BTW, I've come to the conclusion that playing in the main ballroom is over rated.  It's crowded and noisy.  

You're probably thinking, "Wow! She didn't play the entire month of January."  I did play one game but it was part of the club championship that's played over the course of several months.  I got my butt kicked by Joshua Colas.  Then again he was rated 2335 at the time.  Directing a club championship over the course of several months is harder then running a 300 player scholastic tournament.  The scholastic tournament and all the headaches are done in a day or two.  The club championship is the headache that keeps coming back.  I directed the club championship at both my clubs and both were a headache.  Guess what? I'll be doing it again very soon.

No Liberty Bell Open in 2013.  Although my 2012 strategy of taking 2 1/2 point byes in the 3-day schedule and not coining until Sunday worked out fairly well, I didn't feel like making the drive to Philly.  Instead I rode my bike 51 miles that Sunday.  Some people may think riding a bike outside in New York during January is pretty stupid.  They may be right, but I find freezing my ass off while riding is more fun then freezing my ass off in a cold tournament hall, especially if I'm playing like an idiot.

I did make my 4th annual trip to the Grand Pacific Open in Victoria, BC.  I had my worst tournament ever for that event.  One draw and 5 losses.  Maybe I should suck it up and play in Under 1800 section if I go back this year.  That's a dilemma I still have to decide on.  (I digress)  

Maybe I can blame my bad performance on the little detour I took on the way out there.

 Yes I skied down that.

Yes that's me on the left.

For a change I took advantage of the fact that I had the entire week off before Easter.  So instead of simply flying out to Seattle on Thursday and jumping on the ferry the next day, I spent 4 days in Colorado and then went to Seattle.  Skied for the first time in 7 years.  My ski muscle memory is much better then my chess muscle memory.  It all came back very quickly.  In hind sight I should have just spent the whole week in Colorado.

If I remember how to upload games I'll include one in my next post.