Pride and Sorrow

Jun 26, 2009, 12:50 AM |

This is the phrase most often associated with Paul Morphy, brilliant, but such a short career. The same can be said of Bobby Fischer, and well it's the theme of my (belated) weekly post.


First Michael Jackson passed away today, what really surprises me is how bummed I am about this. I remember Thriller coming out as a kid and being completely blown away that one album could have so many hits. Then Bad came out and I thought, "Man, he looks weird." By the time Dangerous was released in 1991 I think it was apparent to even the casual observer that something was seriously wrong with him. There has been a lot of controversy surrounding him in the past 20 years but it's still a loss. There you have it the pride and sorrow…

Farrah Fawcett, well if you had a pulse in the 70's you knew about the poster & Charlie's Angels. She was an American Icon, plus I remember as a kid that she was married to the Six Million Dollar Man, which I thought was super cool. I mean I had a crush on her but I figured at that tender age that if I couldn't have her than at least a cool dude like the Bionic man should.

Now on to my chess adventures…

Last week was busier than I anticipated, I studied but I didn't keep a draft of my blog throughout the week so I don't have stats and such. I did two days of circles, tidied up my opening repertoire studying and looked over some past games. I did have to work Sunday which is when I normally annotate my games and post but since I was working this didn't happen.

The local tourney that I was using as a warm up was last Saturday, I took a bye in round one because trying to acclimate to a non-vampire schedule is hard to do and I have a tough time making a 9AM game. I was falling asleep during my first game as it was.

I lost the first round to a kid rated 100 points more than me, on the white side of an Accelerated Dragon. This kid has become my KING KONG. He has whipped me like a tied up goat 6 times in a row now. White, black, it doesn't matter, he just beats me senseless. Oh well. I will say that despite my weariness I got a good position and had a tiny edge late in the middle game. However instead of consolidating and getting ready for a long grind, I played cheapo, impatient moves and lost my ass. You are probably wondering why I haven't posted any games this week, well; I'll get into that later.

In round two I was playing my beloved Alekhine against a kid within 9 rating points of me. I played pretty sloppy in the opening and early middle game, woke up for the late middle game and early endgame and actually had drawing chances. I had a passed pawn (6th rank) + a bishop + rook vs. 2 rooks. In a time scramble the kid drops a rook for nothing and I force an exchange of rooks and have an h pawn and a white colored bishop (this is the right color by the way) and I ended dropping the pawn. I had 17 seconds left on my clock and I don't have a time delay on it. Maybe it is time to invest in a clock that has a time delay.

In round three I get another Alekhine against a kid rated 50 points higher than me. I play fairly well, and end up with a draw again! I had a chance to win but I didn't play accurately enough, draw is a sensible result.

I lost 11 points and went out with a score of +0 -1 = 2 for a total score of 1.5, considering that ½ a point came by way of a requested bye, not too hot.

So here's the pride/sorrow list for ya



Improved my results with the black pieces

Played shitty

Fought hard to get a draw, YAY!

Played shitty

I only lost 11 rating points.

Lost yet another Sicilian game as white

I know why I lost, it's not a mystery this time

Chess Assistant 10 Crashed on me, again**

Feeling pretty good about this upcoming tourney*

I have to change my white repertoire***


What? Oh the asterisks (*) well let me explain.

*Because I had to work last Sunday I get a comp day this week, I picked Thursday. So I will have off Thursday through Sunday for the upcoming tournament, which gives me an extra day to get on a normal sleep schedule.

** Chess assistant crashed on me for the last time! This happened after I got my weekend games annotated and well, now they are not, hence no games posted this week or even game positions, I just don't have the energy. In fact I just re entered them back into the computer, so yeah, it kind of sucks.

The folks at Convecta are nice and all, but I can't keep doing this. I can't help but to feel that this happens because they force you into Chess Assistant World, where you save your games in CA format instead of .pgn format. Anyway whatever the reason I went out and got ChessBase Light premium. The main difference between it and full blown Chessbase is that the max size of a database is 32,000 games. As I mainly use a database just to store my own games this should suffice. The real whammy is that I have to convert all of my CA games into .pgn format. The utility that does it in CA screwed up half of my games so I'll have to manually enter 79 games into Chessbase L

***I have won exactly one game since Jan of 2008 against the Sicilian. In that time I've faced the Sicilian 6 times out of a possible 23, far less than I'm used to seeing it. This is probably the biggest reason for my slow and steady improvement, I haven't faced my nemesis that often, otherwise I'd still be rated in the low 1400's.

This is pretty devastating to me, but I really hate playing against the Sicilian. With my dismal +5 -11 =2 I think it is time to face facts. I either

  1. Need to learn a new Anti-Sicilian.
  2. Need to start playing the Open Sicilians
  3. Just switch to something else altogether.

I don't see the point in 1, I really don't want to learn how to combat the Sicilian all over again by not playing into normal Sicilian lines.

With number 2, well that's a lot of theory and a lot more pain and suffering involved OTB all over again.

That leaves number 3; a lot of theory, but I can hardly imagine that I'd do worse against anything than I do against the Sicilian. I'm already somewhat familiar with the Reti and I might trot it out this weekend, but I'll have to wait and see how I feel at game time.

Oh well so that is it kids. I am off to watch a few episodes of How I met Your Mother (hilarious) and off to bed. In the morning Mrs. Wang and I & our dog begin hurtling towards New Mexico for the Rio Rancho Open!

Have a good weekend.

PS> Farbor, I've tried, but I can't seem to get rid of those strange symbols in CA when I convert over from pgn. As you can probably tell by my post, I'm pretty much done with CA.