U.S. Chess Class Championships
On October 2nd and 3rd, I competed in this national tournament in Houston, Texas. It was a fun event. I spent some time with my friend Chuck Ventimiglia (used to be "RockingRook" on this site, now he's more active on ICC). He was a great coach and source of encouragement. He got on my case about accepting a draw too early and for hanging my pawns. I greatly appreciate this kind of support. Seriously. I want to be a better chess player, and I need the feedback.
Also, late in the evening... after being beaten around on the 64 squares, it's nice to have someone buy you a beer. Then you talk about chess and life for an hour or two.
After the bar, I walked/stumbled over to the tournament's chess store and bought a game notation PDA. Who sets up a chess store at midnight across from the bar?! Very clever indeed. I wake up in the morning with a fully-charged eNotate lying next to me in bed. It could've been worse.
I've posted my games below. I had an unplanned first round bye (I was the odd person on the pairings), so instead I played a friendly untimed game with Chuck. With rounds 2-4, I lost three games and had one draw. Not great, but I'm learning.
Feel free to critique, analyze, or make suggestions.