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All comments by Karen Walker
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I wasn't aware of this site or the museum. It had photos of all three of these board styles and many others, and I enjoyed browsing all the other collections. Thanks for sharing the link!
Jan. 12
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This is very sad news. Peter was a fascinating, talented man with a wonderful sense of humor.

He served ACBL with great energy and attention to detail. He once asked me to take over the chairmanship of a committee meeting at the last minute, promising that he would help. I thought he'd send a brief outline of topics. Instead, he sent several pages that covered every contingency. It had a flow chart (“If committee chooses B, skip to section 4.A”) and a full script with every sentence written out, right down to “My name is …”.

After the meeting, he was effusive in congratulating me for so closely following his script, then broke out in laughter as he admitted that he was a “certified control freak”. I was totally charmed by him.
Feb. 13, 2017
Karen Walker edited this comment Feb. 13, 2017
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The pancake house in Champaign was Uncle John's. Locals and students mourned when it closed around 1980, then reopened as Aunt Sonya's, then closed again.
Jan. 22, 2017
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Memphis was the best NABC I've been to in the past 10 years. The weather was mild, there were many nearby restaurants with reasonable prices, and I had a $95/night hotel that was walking distance from the tournament hotel. And only Memphis has Graceland.

I'm not familiar with how CEO candidates evaluate potential jobs, but if they weigh how far their salary would go in Memphis as opposed to a more “exciting” city, that would seem to be a strong selling point.
Jan. 22, 2017
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I found these two books illuminating:

“The Invisible Gorilla” by Dan Simons and Christopher Chabris. Theories, research results and practical examples that explore the concept of inattentional blindness – why we fail to notice obvious details.

“Ace on the River” by Barry Greenstein. This is a poker book, but not a technical one. The focus is on psychology and philosophies that can be applied to other competitive activities.

Simons and Greenstein happen to be bridge players who played at my local club in years past.
Dec. 15, 2016
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I haven't seen any comments that claim BBO does nothing or that anyone has a “right” to a certain type of product. It is a real stretch to conclude that these posters are trying to tell BBO how to run their business.

Neither have I seen anything that should make anyone angry enough to issue a “shame on you” to those whose preferences differ from his.

People are expressing their personal preferences and making constructive suggestions. If I were a business owner, I would seek out and welcome this input.
Nov. 6, 2016
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No, but they deliver value to BBO by developing new bridge players, signing up new BBO members, generating more ad views and increasing participation in pay events.
Nov. 5, 2016
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I have an IBM Selectric that I use once a year to fill in 1099 tax forms. It's a personal preference for completing that chore, not an unwillingness to adapt to change.
Nov. 5, 2016
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I, too, would pay to keep the old version. I've tried the web version many times and have learned how to find most of the features, but it is not a pleasant experience.

I hope BBO will take notice of those who are objecting and not just write them off as dinosaurs who are reluctant to learn something new. For me, it's not a matter of adapting to “new and better”. It's a personal preference for a less cluttered screen, more visually appealing colors, bigger fonts, faster (and more intuitive) navigation and more flexible teaching tools.
Nov. 5, 2016
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That type of event does have an actual name. It used to be called “Horizontal Pairs” (or teams), and it was a mainstay on regional schedules many years ago. Back then, the evening sessions were popular because local players could put in a full day of work and still play in a regional-rated event.
Aug. 11, 2016
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I would be interested in your ideas about the other reasons. I’ve seen other symptoms of this “serious bridge is for men only” attitude, but I don’t know its source.

I am not hyper-sensitive about ostensibly sexist treatment. In the few WBF tournaments I’ve attended, though, I found the directing staff to be dismissive and sometimes openly condescending toward women players.

On one occasion, a male director who was called to our table spoke only to the two men at the table. The call involved an explanation made on my side of the screen, but the director actually shushed me when I tried to answer his questions. A few rounds later, I asked him if he had made a ruling and he said he would inform my partner.

Another time, when I tried to report ongoing delays in getting boards and pairs from slow tables, a director gave me an eye roll and a “yes, yes, just try to catch up”. It was only when my male partner called that the director acknowledged the problem and tried to speed up the slow pairs.

Maybe I had the bad luck to interact with just the few bad apples on the staff, but other women have told me they had similar experiences. I hope this isn’t the culture within the entire organization. Whether isolated or pervasive, these attitudes and policies should be brought out into the open.
Aug. 11, 2016
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Steve: It was a shuffle-and-play Swiss match. No duplicated boards. My opponent's error might have been caused by a lack of attention to the previous auction – or poor eyesight or fatigue or Parkinson's Disease. I didn't ask, but it was clear that he was surprised when his partner told him he had made a jump-shift.

Gabor: Yes, technically and in theory, I did the wrong thing, as 91% of this thread's participants have affirmed. I'd like to think, however, that in practice, some (many?) of them would have made the same allowance if a 90-year-old man with tremors had pulled the wrong bidding card at their table, even if it wasn't discovered until the auction was over.
Aug. 5, 2016
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I voted “call it a wash” because that's what I did when a similar situation arose in a tournament.

We were playing a Swiss team match against a very elderly American man and a 30-ish man from eastern Europe, who told us they were a new partnership.

The older man, who was very slow and seemed to have trouble pulling the bidding cards, opened a 12-count and then made a strong jump-shift. After a long auction, his partner became declarer in 6NT and was visibly shocked when he saw dummy. The older man then realized what he had done and was crestfallen.

Since the other table hadn't played the board yet, we offered to redeal before any tricks were played. The younger man asked a director if that was legal and heard “Technically no, but I'm not watching”. So we reshuffled and lost 2 IMPs on a partscore deal – but made two new friends.

The postscript: Later, when my partner and I reconstructed our hands from the 6NT deal, we discovered that two suits were breaking 3-3 and a queen was onside, which was going to produce 12 tricks. So now I felt bad that we had unwittingly stolen 13 IMPs from our opponents, but I still think that throwing in the hand was the right thing to do.
Aug. 4, 2016
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Great showing from Illinois universities in sending three teams and having all make it to the semifinals. That and the Cubs are the only things this state has to brag about.
July 28, 2016
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Margaret: Here's an overview of Eisenhower as a bridge player. It includes some hands he played and defended, as reported by national media.
http://advocate.district8acbl.com/jun09/ike.htm
May 25, 2016
Karen Walker edited this comment May 25, 2016
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When we have a Mitchell movement, I occasionally move a C pair or two to be sure there are enough pairs sitting each direction to win C-stratum masterpoints. In most games, though, the players do a pretty good job of seeding themselves. Strong pairs sitting N-S look around the room and if they see too many good pairs sitting their direction, they'll ask their E-W pair to trade seats with them.

The opposite occurs, too. I know some clubs have pairs who wouldn't give up their N-S seats for anyone, but it's never been an issue at my club.
May 19, 2016
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I'll be the fourth at your table, if you don't mind having three opponents.

A natural 2NT is seldom, perhaps never, a good way to save partner when you have a weak hand with no fit. It's a forward-going bid here and suggests a trap-pass hand. The auction is uncommon enough that East probably should have simplified matters by jumping directly to 3NT, but his 2NT is far from “insane”.
May 14, 2016
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I have no intention of being a spelling cop, but for those who are interested:

Psyche (pronounced sike-ee) is usually a noun that refers to the spirit, the soul, the center of human thought and emotion. When capitalized, it's a Greek goddess.

Psych (pronounced sike) is usually a verb that can mean to excite, to mentally prepare or to psychologically intimidate. When used as a noun (probably only by bridge players), it's still spelled psych, without the e. The same applies to its other word forms (psychs, psyched, psyching).
April 11, 2016
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I have never seen a carryover that big. Go, Jenni and Greg!
March 16, 2016
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Craig told me he came to Reno to try to reach the 5000-point mark, even though he was going to have to do it with pickup partners. Now he's more than halfway to Grand LM. I and his other old friends from the University of Illinois are VERY happy for him.
March 16, 2016
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