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All comments by Max Schireson
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Ah, anyone can enter if they are willing to blatantly lie. Oh well, scratch that plan.
July 29, 2016
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I just checked the CoC and the mixed Swisses specify male and female.

Greg, are you saying:
- that the ACBL has something of a don't ask / don't tell policy here and just doesn't check
- that they accept your word for your gender identify and anyone claiming to be a certain gender is allowed to play as that gender
- something else?

Say a team of 3 men and 1 woman enter the mixed Swiss. We are violating the conditions of entry listed in the CoC. I would think at minimum we should not be able to keep any masterpoints won and likely should be subject to discipline.

???
July 29, 2016
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Not surprised, but for a pair wanting to enter the mini-VZ the VZ consolation seems like a reasonable backup. It's not clear whether the pairs knocked out of the VZ is a stronger or weaker field than the pairs that entered the 0-5k?

For a pair ineligible for the 10ks who are knocked out of the championship flight without drop ins they are in a regional event, a huge delta from dropping into VZ. For the GNT-A pair, they play VZ consolation instead of mini-VZ, seems not nearly the same dropoff?

I am not arguing about what the policy should actually be, just pointing out a significant asymmetry which imo makes it not so clear as it would otherwise be to extend the drop in policy to the lower flights.
July 26, 2016
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While I don't feel strongly about whether the Bruce 0-5000 should allow drop ins, the situation seems significantly different from VZ because the 0-10000 pairs is also available and everyone from the non-championship GNT flights should be eligible.

While some might prefer the Bruce, it seems like they have a reasonable alternative unlike players from the championship flight with over 10000 masterpoints.
July 26, 2016
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Thanks, the more I think about it the more I think my question was very likely to blame for the 3S bid. Great lesson for me.
July 26, 2016
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I really didn't pick up on anything in East's reaction to West's explanation, but that is a really good point. Thank you. I should be more alert to that in the future.

In retrospect perhaps I should not have asked and W might have passed. While I didn't have a call at that point, I generally like to follow the flow of the auction and be prepared for what may come. This time it may have burned me.
July 25, 2016
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Your edit is my point exactly.

I think the standard isn't that the play is logical in the abstract sense but specifically that players of that class would have seriously considered it and a significant portion would have chosen it. I think some could have thought they had already bid their hand with the strong jump shift and it's up to west to continue. Who knows exactly what they thought they had shown already when they don't even have clarity about whether the JS was strong in the first place. W probably raised just in case they had the JS agreement wrong and it was strong, this is a pair where agreements are not clear and anything could have happened.

The majority seem to disagree with me so maybe I am wrong, but the more I think about it the more I think the “logical alternative” model really doesn't fit well for less skillful players.
July 25, 2016
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To you, or in a field where apart from this pair with the UI more pairs played in partscore than in slam, and for a pair that finished near the bottom of this field?
July 25, 2016
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I don't think the (potential) MI did any damage so I didn't look at the card to see what the agreement actually was. I also don't think the actual agreement effects the UI east has significantly, but I could have missed something.
July 25, 2016
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Ian,

I will miss you. Even if I thought a couple of your comments were sexist I certainly didn't want you gone. I enjoyed many of your posts and hope you will be back someday.
July 25, 2016
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Agree that's the question. It seemed to me that it was not clear what they would have done and merited a poll. My guess was that the poll results, like the table results, would have been all over.

Agree it's a good slam, especially since N rates to have the missing honors and on the bidding W could easily have 3 spades.
July 25, 2016
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Another thank you, and a request to post again when you are able. It is great to follow progress. Do they post the site outs so that we can know when way playing each segment on teams that are more than 4 handed? If so if anyone has a chance to upload a photo of that I would appreciate it, probably many others would as well!
July 20, 2016
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I am sure that some of what you describe exists too and I don't want to argue against the golden rule, but I have to say that sometimes it is hard to understand what is required.

For example last week I make a XX, the meaning of which depends on whether opponents double was penalty or takeout. I did not ask before making the bid; when my partner asks the answer is AI to me but the fact that partner asked is UI. Also the fact that I didn't ask is UI to partner. Since of course had I asked pard would know I understood which case we are in, and pards UI suggests that this might not be the case, then pard seems to be obligated to play me for having gotten it right. But my knowledge that partner has to play this way should be UI to me so I should then play assuming that pard is playing me for *not* having gotten my bid right? Having actually gotten the meaning of the double right at the table, I missed all theses inferences and just played normally, but now I suspect that perhaps I should have sought out LAs that catered to partner assuming I had misunderstood the double. I am still not certain. This could be a whole post unto itself, I am sure there would be many opinions.

Well meaning players, especially beginning ones, might legitimately find this too confusing to even try to understand. And if they “don't want” to understand, I have quite a bit of sympathy for them. Certainly most non-experts (and that certainly includes me) won't be able to figure it out in the unlikely event that they even consider the issue.

Bridge would be a much more approachable game if these issues only had to be considered in a Spingold final or similar. I think just assuming that there is something wrong with those who want to play without considering these issues is unfair.

Of course there are players who routinely and obviously use UI to help in club games and low level tournaments, we should absolutely try to reduce this… but my point is that the logic can become quite complex and perhaps beyond many players ability to comprehend.
July 18, 2016
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Speaking as a new player who enters a wide range of events from NABC+ (to try to learn against strong opponents) to NLM (often with my kids who are just learning the very basics), I have some sympathy for this point of view but would draw the line differently.

I don't think regionals or sectionals should be for new players. In recent regionals and sectionals I have faced world class opponents and learned a lot in the process. I was a bit surprised to find a very strong pro team at a sectional but it made for the most exciting matches I played there. I would not have wanted different rules; had I wanted easier opponents I could have entered a gold rush, or not requested top bracket, or if I had more masterpoints and wanted to avoid strong opposition I could have played in the side game, or the under 2000 event they held on the last weekend in Sacramento.

That said, I do think having different rules for limited events or low brackets may have some merit. The downside is that it doesn't prepare players to move up, but while I eagerly play up we have to accept than many players don't want to play against top level opponents, or play by complex rules they have trouble understanding. Also changing the rules there could make UI and similar issues an even worse problem that it is and make the limited games even further from what experts would call bridge than it already is, so whether there is a solution or what it is is quite unclear to me. In particular at the very very beginning of learning bridge I do think it is far to difficult and intimidating and I would love to see a solution to this, I just don't know what it is.

But when you enter an open event where you might find expert or world class opponents, I strongly believe you are signing up to play by the rules - otherwise don't enter that event!
July 18, 2016
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While RKCB for spades may or may not be the best agreement to have, I have the agreement that if none of the various other rules that define what 4NT means for us apply it is RKC for the last bid suit, so that's what I selected. Perhaps other agreements are better but I like never having to guess and this case seems rare enough not to define something specific.
July 17, 2016
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Debbie and I can both be very proud - plenty to go around with that result even if the allocation is unclear.

Olivia finally beat me in a skin race last winter, I know what's coming next!
July 11, 2016
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Kevin, thanks and congrats. Olivia came home so excited! Our comments crossed in transit.
July 11, 2016
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It was a great event. Congrats on your victory and thanks for posting the hands. Well done.

My daughter Olivia Schireson (11) is a relatively new player and played in an open game for the first time, mentored and partnered by Kevin Rosenberg. She and another relatively new youth player, Stella Wan, partnered by mentor Lynn Shannon, managed to finish 4th of 17 teams in the open, ahead of some teams of strong local players. Both Olivia and Stella had less than 5 masterpoints coming into the event and had been playing in limited games; I thought 4th was an outstanding finish and worthy of congratulations to everyone on that team.

I had fun in the limited section, playing with three newer players (two youth and one adult) who held between them .13 masterpoints. In a round robin we faced the team that wound up winning in our last match (despite being 0-4) and we almost pulled it out. I have to say my excitement about winning that match was right up there with any match I have played. The absolute masterpoint stakes were low, but how often can you triple the total masterpoints of 3 team members in one match? I call that high stakes.

As usual Will Watson did a great job directing and the SiVY mentoring was outstanding. My daughter raved about how aggressively she could bid when Kevin was declaring!
July 11, 2016
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Roland,

I should have mentioned that if pard really is right on the edge of inviting a slam (thus really at the top end of 3N) if you have an absolute maximum I think you should be a favorite to make a slam. In this case partner thinks it is almost worth being in a slam across from the hands that would have accepted an invite (say good 16-17); if you are a good 17 that was almost too good for a 1N opening then slam should be a favorite. Of course it could easily be a disaster to be in 4N opposite a minimum 3N raise, but I do think 60% is realistic when partner is strong. And of course that is nother relevant to the standard you describe, bidding on is still a losing action overall in the face of the uncertain UI, just a much less negative expectation shot to take if you are looking for one.

I am not all the way to IIHSI, but I just can't feel good about allowing that bid after a hesitation.
July 10, 2016
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I tested with some regular partners. Unsurprisingly without being able to see my hand most of them had no idea wtf I was thinking with that bid. Good reminder not to improvise random bids even if they seem like they can't be anything else! I am now with the 5S crowd, though I will leave my stupid vote where it is, seems fair to keep a public embarrassment since I didn't have to lose any imps for my bad bid.
July 10, 2016
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