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Happy holidays to you too Scott
I never played at Arcadia, but I played a lot at Pasadena, especially between 1998 and 2005, I had a lot of fun there.
What makes any TD, director, coach "strict" is the fact the he/she runs any type of tournament or competition in a very professional manner. Absolutely applying the rules, policies, and procedures in a totally objective manner. For instance I know that the majority of TD's do not enforce any type of discipline at their clubs/tournaments. I run 3 clubs and also many Opens during the year. All of those thousands of chess players from scholastic to GM's know that I will not hesitate to penalize, forfeit, even unfortunately ban them from future participation in chess events. I've kicked out two well known GM's from the larger tournaments that drew the ire of the organizers, but rights right and I keep the oath I swore to uphold the Laws of Chess. I know NTD's, Local TD's, Senior TD's, and Special Referees who have never done what I do simply because they do not want to offend any of their chess players. That is bias and cowardice pure and simple. I could say I'm tough as well as strict as they are synonymous. My job is to make sure all events that I organize and TD are conducive to the best chess play possible and believe me until you have run tournaments in the hundreds of players with hundreds of thousands of dollars at stake all based on your ability to judge claims properly then you will see why toughness had better be a part of your ability to TD. When I took over the Pasadena Chess Club for example it was run terribly unprofessional. I brought rules, and policies up to date. Posted proper ethical behavior with signs, rules are posted and announced every round. I had to warn, and penalize constantly until the club turned around. I walk the tournament games all night long (not playing) looking at all the games and making eye contact with all the players. So for more than 2 years now we have broken every attendance record in the 99 year history of the club. The players thank me constantly for running these tournaments professionally. Yes I lost players right out of the gate as they did not like the fact that they must follow all the rules all of the time. Some of them were very high rated but that does not impress me. What impresses me are the players who want that type of atmosphere to be able to play their best chess possible. I'm also very fair to all players equally. Believe me those players are watching me closely to see any evidence of compromise and they will never see that. My opinion is that if half of our TD's in the USCF were strict we would have millions of participating chess players nationwide everyday. Can you imagine what would happen in the NFL, MLB, or any other professional sport if the referees did not enforce the rules even once? They would be history. Should chess the 3rd largest participated sport in the world demand any less from it's TD's??
Thank you very much Scott for the detailed reply. And thank you for being evenhanded and fair in your running of tournaments.
I am considering becoming a td. And so that's why I asked the question.
Hey Scott. Did you used to play at the Jewish Community Center by chance (I think it was in Canoga Park)? Jerry was the TD there.
This is Owen, BTW.
Yes this is the same Scott. Actually I took the West Valley Chess Club over. It was down to 8 players and ready to fold. Wrong Directing I'm afraid. It has taken me an entire year just to get it back to the 40's -50's each tournament. The players were just down. I'm really hoping to get it back up to par and beyond. Hope to see you sometime.
To SeniorPatzer we could always use another good TD. Hope you give it a try.
Good to hear. I remember you always talked about leading a chess club, glad to see that it happened. I'm living in South Dakota and just getting back into chess. If I'm in the LA area I'll definitely stop by. It would be nice to play a couple of game with you.