Compared to some of the other veterans at the Germantown Chess Club, Lou Golder had not been one of my frequent opponents. Possibly I had played a loss against him when I was weaker and a draw after I got stronger. In any case, I really did not know what to expect when I sat down to play Lou on the second game of my 23rd birthday. I believe Boris Baczynskyj, about three years older than I, was the second oldest player in the event. Lou was the only entrant over the age of 30!
Ironically, this led one member of the 60's "old guard" to observe that the field must be weaker without the established vets. Actually, history has shown that the '73 group was no weaker, possibly stronger than the 1960's contingent - and the "golden age" of the late 70's, driven by the Fischer boom, would consist of an even stronge,r young group.
In the opening against Lou I made a spur-of-the-moment, unprepared decision, to play the Danish Gambit(!), generating some anticipated adrenaline. But when Lou spun out the marvelous and unseen (at least by me) 3...Qe7, that all changed and my adrenaline balloon deflated. Later the game turned into a highly unbalanced mess after Lou blundered and I was winning, but it would be easy to lose the advantage on almost every move. So I gobbled up my time... (on the moves that have comments, click on the move to see those comments below the diagram):
If I remember correctly, this win tied me for first at 3-1 (I may not be remembering accurately, since I no longer have the cumulative crosstable). In any case, after three consecutive wins I have gone from tied for last to tied for first at 3-1. This could be the start of something good.
Next up, old rival and friend Harvey Bradlow.
Previous installments (Part 1 of 7) - (Part 2) (Part 3)