"Chess Hitchhiker - Will Work for Knowledge"
As I sit here listening to Les Stroud's music, drinking a cold bottle of water on a rainy day, with my "Chess Central" bedroom office reorganized, I stare blankly at one of my chess books wondering where to start...again.
You see, it's been months since I've looked at one of these books, or played a game on Fritz 12, Chessmaster 10, or even Online here at Chess.com. What I've been doing in those many months since can be deemed incredibly irrelevant to most mature human beings: Computer Gaming.
Whether it's anything with the words "Call of Duty," "Civilization," or even "Paradox Interactive," I've been ruling the world as an armchair dictator or running around maps with machine guns and grenades in tow and speakers at their max. Don't get me wrong--it's been fun, a blast actually (pun intended)--but at the end of the day what do I have to show for it? A couple of printed-out maps to plan out my next war or a hand-cramp or two with a few extra levels of game experience and prestige?
Chess has been set way back in the darkest crevasses and recesses of my mind, gathering dust and a few spiderwebs. Over the last couple of days, though, something changed.
It was after I had purchased the last two "Modern Warfare 3" map packs for the PC when I felt "Buyer's Remorse." When I got home that night I told Donna, my girlfriend, that it just didn't feel right. The next day, after being glued to my chair for a few hours playing it, my remorse felt worse.
Right then I decided to get back into chess and care more about that than sniping some poor noob 500 yards away, quick-scope style. I rearranged my "Chess Central" office, and gathered together my chess equipment, books and everything else I had, all in one place. I even went so far as rebuilding my "Chessmaster 10" computer league, set to kick off in 2013.
OK. All of that is fine and dandy, but what about my studies and challenge of practically re-learning the game? I can watch just about any game from history through Chessbase 11, read any of Silman's books or get humbled and frustrated on Tactics Trainer or Chess Mentor here. I'm at a crossroads with my (figuratively speaking) hastily written cardboard sign, six days of scruff on my face, one shoe tied, and pizza sauce running down my chin.
So, I am a "chess hitchhiker." Can someone point me in which direction I should go first? Remember, don't drive by me and splash me with that muddy pothole as you drive by; I may just pull out my Black Ops Famas and wipe out your car.