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Bad bidding practices that you nevertheless see many long-time players engage in

As people who have read my posts know, I readily admit I am a very new (but enthusiastic) bridge player, so am always trying to learn new things. In that spirit, I wanted to use this thread as a chance for experienced (as well as less experienced) lovers of this game to name things they see many players, including ones who have been playing for decades, do at bridge clubs that they wish these people wouldn't do.

I am not talking about etiquette issues, of which there are plenty, but rather issues directly involving bidding and play (mostly the former). Here are some I have observed during my nascent career playing in person and online, and, once again, most relate to bidding. I’ll put it in the context of (mostly online, but some in-person) experienced pickup partners.

-I open 1M and experienced pickup partner, with 13-15 points and 3 card support, jumps right to 4M.

-Experienced pickup partner insists that it's "best" or "easier" to "bid naturally" over NT, even in the direct seat. With two-suited hands, they argue, they can just "bid the second suit later"

-Experienced pickup partner insists that we play "Plain Blackwood" instead of RKC even when we know the trump suit because the latter is "too complicated." They may also say it is fine because you can always ask for the number of kings, missing the point that knowing whether we hold the trump king in particular matters a lot.

-Experienced pickup partner insists that in 1-(1)-1M auction, responder is promising five cards in that major (see my earlier post on this)

-Conversely, another experienced pickup partner might respond 1 holding just four spades after a 1 overcall of partner's 1m opener.

-Experienced pickup partner says he "doesn't do" cue bids in advancing partner's overcalls or exploring slam, because they are "too confusing"

-Experienced pickup partner says he “doesn’t do” reverses

-Experienced pickup partner insists that holding any hand with 12 or more points (not, say, 17-18 or more, but 12 or more, so just any opening hand, period), it is appropriate to double the opponent's opening bid, regardless of suit distribution or anything else.

-Experienced pickup partner insists that any double after 2 or 3 has to be for penalty.

-Experienced pickup partner insists that it's good to always overcall even at the two level with a bad five-card suit

-This one is more rare but experienced pickup partner insists on using Gerber in the context of suit contracts rather than just over 1NT and 2NT.

-Experienced pickup partner plays any aces he holds the first chance he gets regardless of the circumstances or context

Again, the things I am writing about are things I have seen from people who have been playing a long, long time and who are often self-proclaimed “advanced” players.

Does anyone have any other examples of these sorts of bad practices you see from long-time players who just never bothered to learn? I don’t know exactly why it bugs me but here I am posting about it.

Any comments welcome.

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