Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Adam Parrish
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What I think is most important is that you promise a control in your doubleton (or tripleton). Otherwise partner can be faced with an impossible guess.
Jan. 26
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Even when it tries to do something right, the WBF just can't help bungling it, can it? Why do we recognize their authority and give them any money and go to the sham tournaments they hold? REVOLUTION!
Jan. 25
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A no-brainer. Congrats!
Jan. 22
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Not being able to select number of beds is really unacceptable. The availability thing is stupid and unacceptable, but how am I supposed to plan my stay with a roommate if they won't guarantee me two beds? Why would I want to book through this system?

Seeing as we run three very large “conferences” a year, and that's arguably the most important thing the organization does, having an in-house staff to manage these events seems warranted and ultimately cost effective. The third-party housing model has proved much too problematic. Planning conferences – choosing sites, negotiating with hotels, helping attendees when they have issues – is a serious skill, and we need someone (more likely a team) with significant experience dedicated to this full time. As much as anything, the ACBL is in the business of destination travel experiences; we should act like it.
Jan. 17
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For a TD in a 199er game or something, absolutely, educate educate educate. If someone is at the point that they're playing against Debbie, certainly they should know better, and I don't think the TD should stop the game to give what might be seen as a very condescending lesson. If the TD really thinks the player doesn't understand, coming up to them at a break and asking, “Do you understand my ruling?” seems appropriate. This also has the advantage of giving time for tempers to cool. But it shouldn't be incumbent upon the director; if a player doesn't understand a ruling, he should take time later to ask. Here, the TD's responsibility is to make sure that the reasoning is clearly explained and the process is not intimidating.
Jan. 17
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Player memo is 100% the way to go. In the short run it will probably not amount to much more than a discussion with the player by the recorder – which is exactly what you want. Unless they are really egregious, individual instances are not subject to disciplinary action. But in the long run, if the player continues to engage in illegal/unethical behavior, there is a record and a case can be brought based on a pattern of behavior.
Jan. 17
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I think “Is this bid forcing?” and “What kind of signal is this?” questions are the most frequent and interesting debates.
Jan. 17
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Education is part of the job of a recorder (I have done this as the local recorder). I think it's also appropriate for a club director. Unless a TD knows the person involved I don't think doing much educating is appropriate. Something like, “The laws require you to pause 8-10 seconds after a jump bid” seems reasonable. But I don't think it's their job to explain why.
Jan. 16
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He was incredibly helpful any time I had an issue with or question about his software (which I love). He'll be missed.
Jan. 9
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I'm not sure about whether 4 is forcing, but I lean toward yes, since North could have opened 3/4 opposite a passed partner. Either way, I'm not passing. I think 4, COG, is a better bid now than 4, as it suggests better club support, than 4 would. Either should suggest long spades in a hand unfit for a preempt–almost certainly weak spades. That should place partner well. Partner could have xx in spades, and I'd rather shoot for 10 tricks there than 11.
Jan. 5
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I don't get it, Steve. North described their agreement. South knew he was heavy, with a very offensive hand. And the 3 bid improves it. No UI, unless South thought the agreement was constructive or invitational, which the OP does not suggest. And even then, does the 4 bid really catch him up? I think 4 is automatic.
Jan. 4
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Hard to imagine not bidding 4. Even on a simple LOTT basis, the 3 bid makes it almost certain partner has 4 clubs.
Jan. 4
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Congrats to all!
Jan. 4
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If you bid 3 with this hand, wouldn't your hope be either to buy it there or have partner move toward 3NT? If you're not allowed to buy it in 3, competing to 4 seems obvious to me, especially after 3. The chances partner has only 3 clubs goes down dramatically after East shows a 6th heart. North would have to be 4=3=3=3 and West void of hearts. Simply from a LOTT perspective, which is what South claimed from the beginning, 4 now looks right.
Jan. 2
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We're not being asked to assess the rest of the auction, and the OP's description is that the ruling was based on MI from the word “weak” and East's contention that he would not have balanced with knowledge South could have 7 HCP. If there was UI (ie, South thought his jump was invitational or Mixed or something) that would be a totally different conversation. The question here is, is a vague description like “weak” sufficient to give East a two-way shot at balancing? I say not even close.
Jan. 1
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Which is exactly what was meant by “Weak,” it seems.
Jan. 1
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I think “preemptive” is a much worse word. Every bid is preemptive. (1) 1 is preemptive – it has preempted responder from bidding 1. 1NT is even more preemptive. If my partner overcalled 1NT and my explanation was “preemptive” that wouldn't be entirely untrue, but it would certainly be a terrible answer.

Of course when you jump you are being preemptive. The question is whether your aim is to show values and invite game or to be obstructive. “Weak” suggests the latter. Much better than “preemptive,” IMO.
Jan. 1
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Couldn't agree more, Kit.
Jan. 1
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I guess I'm not most people, as I would not assume weak to be less than 6 HCP. I don't know where that definition comes from. Weak to me means you are not interested in game, think the hand likely belongs to the opponents, and are being obstructive.

I don't see how having a different definition of “weak” is in remotely the same category as not alerting a conventional call. This is more akin to not stating a line when you claim with 14 tricks.
Jan. 1
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Is “weak” a great description of any bid? Not really. But East found it sufficient. I would call this hand “weak.” It's not invitational. Are we really going to insist on a non-existent and murky category of “constructive” somewhere between “weak” and “invitational”? As pointed out above, this is not how the current regulations are worded. Just because “weak” for me means something different than it does for you doesn't mean my explanation is incorrect. It means the terminology needs definition, which the League has done with the new charts.

Anyone with sufficient experience should a) try to be more helpful than saying “weak” but b) know enough to ask further when they get a vague explanation. When I ask about a bid like 1 - 2; 3 and get “help suit,” I always ask what sort of suit they expect, because I have seen people think an appropriate suit for a help-suit GT is xxx and others who think it's KJxx. The explanation “help suit” is not very helpful, but I know enough to ask.

If partner opens a weak-2 in first seat, I'm asked about it, and I explain that we play weak-2 bids, so this bid is natural and preemptive, have I sufficiently explained our agreement if partner could have anywhere from QJxxx x Qxxx xxx to AKxxxx x Qxxx xx? “Natural and preemptive” is basically the same as “weak.” Should the opponents get redress if they balance when partner has the second hand and get too high? Or if they don't when he has the first and miss a game? The point of preempts is to make the opponents guess. Sure, they deserve some explanation of what the bid shows, but just because you sometimes have a little extra for a preempt doesn't mean you have to wave a flag and alert every time you bid. Doesn't it do just as much damage to say, “Sometimes he's heavier than you'd expect for a preempt” when he turns up with a 2-count?

I think everyone made reasonable decisions on this hand. Knowing that South could be heavier than East would call “weak,” is he still going to think that both South is heavy AND North has a 19-count? This is an automatic balance. Today it just worked out badly. Live with it.
Jan. 1
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