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WPP #4: Inconsistent Thought Process
Photo courtesy of Mother Jones.

WPP #4: Inconsistent Thought Process

Aug 12, 2017, 9:14 PM 3

    Greetings (nonexistent) readers! As strange as it may sound, our series is only half done now as I still have to write the Confirmation Bias and Blunders posts. However, as Inconsistent Thought Process is a rather vague and uninteresting topic to write about, I thought I would put it in the middle, just to mess with you grin.png Aren't I evil? evil.png

    Indeed, the phrase Inconsistent Thought Process could mean almost anything to the point that it almost comes across as pseudo-intellectual gibberish. But that's precisely the point. Why would I tell you what this blog is about right now when I can keep it until just before I show you the examples? grin.png

    You've probably guessed by now that the title is intentionally vague, and that's for a good reason. This post talks about all of the mental errors I make in games that don't fit into a nice, neat, article-sized category. This post is also my attempt to categorize those mental errors and present you with an article that shows everything that goes on inside my head during a game, so that you can learn from my mistakes.

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   Quote courtesy of every famous person who thought of it then had enough people hear it to get quoted grin.png

    I've annotated the following game in a very strange way. You won't see any variations, any musings about what I had done wrong, or even comments about the reality of the position. What you will see is my thoughts during the game on full display.

    Or maybe not. What I (sadly) discovered in the process of annotating this game is the thoughts which swirl around in my head during a game are so turbulent that I can't even express them as they were in English, or any other language for that matter, because dang it, spoken language, why do you have to be so concise? A word of advice: take my "thoughts" in these diagrams with a large grain of salt. They are always more jumbled than you would infer from the writing.

    Here's another game which I played that same week. It isn't the most complex thing ever, but I have to show it because it contains one particularly instructive error. I've backed off on the "thoughts-only" approach here, but there's still plenty to look at. The problem is that the "thoughts" are even more sugarcoated than in the first example.

So why did I play lemons like 6. cxd4, 15. g3 and 16. a3? 6. cxd4 was an opening slip-up that can happen to anyone, but it happened because I was playing on autopilot and not really looking at the position. 15. g3 was the product of the thoughts that I had to be better and that I didn't look better with a Black knight on f4. 16. a3 was the product of me reflexively trying to stop the annoying ... Bb4 and ... Nb4.
    The common denominator between all of these: never in making any of these moves did I "talk to the board" at all. This problem is even present in smaller mistakes like 14. Rc1, a product of trying not to make any outright mistakes because I didn't really know what was going on. Even 14. Bd3, in a way, was a product of not stopping and asking "How can I save my Bishop without allowing the Na1 to escape?"
    But that's chess for you. The source of most mistakes is just being an idiot. tongue.png
    Thanks to all of you for reading this blog post. I plan to have the Confirmation Bias post out by this coming Saturday. After the series is done, you can expect to see up to five posts before the launch of Everything Openings: one each on the August Untitled Tuesday, the Endgame Lovers tournament I'm playing, Round 3 of the TUTC tournament I'm also playing, an annotated game and possibly a post on reaching 1600. Cheers! happy.png

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