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How club directors and "get nobody's feelings hurt" rulings hurt our game...

Playing Ken Rexford's MICS at a local club on Monday.  My partner and I come to the table against two older women we don't recognize for the next to last round.

Club owner has requested we prealert MICS, so I start the short spiel, and get interrupted by "Oh, we don't need to hear that, we're hera

to play bridge."

"Sorry, ma'am, the owner asked us to let you know that..."

"Oh, God, ok, get it over with..."

So we do.  First board is relatively nondescript.  The second board, however...

West
A3
Q9853
3
87652
North
J742
K76
QJ2
A104
East
K9865
4
AK976
93
South
Q10
AJ102
10854
KQJ
W
N
E
S
P
P
1
P
1
P
1
P
P
P
D
1 East
NS: 0 EW: 0

I alert 1D.  RHO asks.

"It's one of three types of hands (opp rolls eyes), all of which are 11-15 HCP...either a one-suiter with diamonds, a one-suiter with clubs, or a hand with 4 or more diamonds with an equal-length or longer major."

More rolled eyes.  I bid 1H, and partner rebids 1S.  I alert.  RHO asks again. "Five or more spades, and his spades are longer or equal to diamonds".

I pass, ending the auciton.  This was a good result for us, as the field was in various higher places going down--we were the only EW pair to go plus.  Opps see their 0 percent result on the Bridgepad and are muttering.  We tell them to have a good afternoon, and move on.  The director passes by them, and as I move to our last round I can hear them complaining about our system and the board.  I didn't pay it any mind...

Which is why I was shocked when, looking at that day's results, I see their score was adjusted to average on the board! (We kept our top.)

Obviouly, the director felt she had to appease these folks who felt our newfangled system had ripped them off.  I know this goes on in many places, and all the time, but it does damage to our game.  Part of the whole point is to encourage these people to come out and play in tournaments when they're around.  When and if they do, they're going to be shocked when they don't get these homebrewed rulings there.  A lot of them will have the reaction they won't play in a tournament again.

I don't know what can be done about this, but there has to be something to be done to educate directors that "keeping everyone happy" in this way is a shortsighted reaction...

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