Who Are The 'Silman Stalkers'?
IM Silman empties his inbox.

Who Are The 'Silman Stalkers'?

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Editor's note: IM Silman publishes a roundup of messages received from members.

The member RuleDomain said something about a group called the “Silman Stalkers.” After hearing that, I make sure I lock the door and look out the window as often as I can.

man binoculars

The member KtFighter told me he has a cat named Lasker (great name!). By the way, he (KtFighter, not the cat) is a full-time Uber driver. I bring that up since I ditched my Audi a couple years ago and now (when I’m in Los Angeles) go everywhere in Ubers. Uber isn’t doing so well in Japan, mainly because the land of the rising sun has fantastic, reasonably priced, super clean cabs.

KtFighter also laments that he’s never gotten a higher rating than low "A." Toss the laments away, Mr. KtFighter, very few people ever reach that rating.

The member varelse1 wrote: "You once said that, ‘Everybody, even grandmasters, will blunder a piece once in a while.’ I don’t think I’ve ever seen an article dedicated to grandmasters blundering pieces. That would be a neat article.”

JS: Actually, I already wrote an article on that topic.

The article could be much, much, MUCH longer, but hopefully the reality that all pros hang stuff should now be common knowledge.

Many members ask if I’m Japanese. I tried hard to ignore it. But I’ll give up if everyone will stop asking that question: No, I’m from Russian (Jewish) stock. However, I do go back and forth between Japan and Los Angeles. And yes, Japan really is the coolest place in the world.

japan travel sign

The member BillBrasky8 wrote: “Just started the bishop’s section of How to Reassess Your Chess, 4th Edition. The first section about knights completely overhauled how I see the game and I’m already much better than I was before reading just 30 pages of your book. Thank you so much. I’ve also gotten two people now to buy your book because I told them it’s the reason I improved so fast.”

JS: Mr. BillBrasky8, thanks for the kind words, AND you gave me an idea! I will hire thousands of men and women to knock on doors throughout the U.S. They will be similar to the Jehovah’s Witnesses, except instead of giving out their magazine, my people will hand out the first 20 pages of How to Reassess Your Chess, 4th Edition. After reading those 20 pages, I’m sure they will purchase the whole book (no book burning allowed!).

The member REDGARS wrote: “Many thanks for your articles. Can you write an article on the analysis of your games by players 1600-1800.”

JS: Errrr…when I was active I usually was paired with experts (2000-2199), masters, IMs, and GMs (my highest rating was 2593). However, once in a while I was paired with a low-rated opponent. I never thought of analyzing those games.

Okay, I just found some games from a tournament in Chicago. I had forgotten about this event but it’s coming back. Anyway, the competition seems pretty bad, but sometimes "bad" can be instructive.


My next opponent was obviously much stronger than the other two. However, I have no idea what his rating was.

Finally, the member CornerPawn wrote this: “Isn’t it time you wrote another monograph on the 4...Nf6 Caro Kann? I would snap that one up in a jiffy.” 

JS: Sorry, but I don’t write opening books anymore. However, you bringing this opening up brought back many happy memories. Since I just showed three games from Chicago (though I was a San Francisco guy), I’ll show one more game from Chicago where I faced (for first place) an international master:

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