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All comments by Mike Nelson
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I don't understand the problem. All of the other 9,999 was of getting a bad board can produce a serendipitous top instead, but on average, they lose a bundle of matchpoints. And the various “could have known” laws will take away a significant number of them. Why banish the Rueful Rabbit from our game rooms by taking them all?
14 hours ago
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I've played back in the days when bidding was verbal, and any call except an indisputably natural lowest sufficient bid in the the same denomination barred your partner. You comped with it by paying attention and didn't make insufficient bids. If your concentration slipped and you did make one, you got a bad board, same as if you made a legal but stupid bid, or a lunatic declare play, or a brain-dead opening lead, or any of the the ten thousand other ways to get a bad board. You said “sorry partner” and moved on to the next board. Directors used their brain cells for unavoidably difficult UI/MI cases, they could make IB rulings in their sleep.

Fast forward to 2018 and we see a different picture: wrangling about how to hair-split the latest wording of the laws is the order of the day. That tendency wasn't unknown in the seventies, but it has really gotten more intense, and directory are using their time figuring out if something is a comparable call, burning brain cells to adjudicate stuff that's complicated only because the laws let it be.

Bidding boxes are a boon, and while zero tolerance is a more mixed blessing, it has done more good than harm, IMHO. I can not say the same about the changes that have made the laws ever more complicated in the pursuit of ever greater equity. We passed the point of diminishing returns a while ago.
Jan. 17
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The WBF could do something good for a change: issue the proper paperwork to remove this “comparable call” nonsense from the laws now, without waiting for the next revision.
Jan. 16
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Can I like this about thirty times? The penalty for premeditated cheating should be banishment for time and eternity. Any cheater who seeks a lesser penalty should know that if a lesser penalty is granted, it is pure unmerited grace.
Jan. 16
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I'm mostly am in partnerships where 1NT might have a stiff heart. I would bid 2 on five if I'm unbalanced and the heart are beefy enough that a 5-1 will play reasonably well, or at least not get murdered too badly, if I really, really fear the prospects in 1NT.

But when I can trust partner to have at least two hearts, all I need is decent hearts and a stiff in a pointed suit (I'd sit with a stiff club).
Jan. 16
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By my rules, this isn't a forcing pass:

A pass is forcing if and only if a member of the partnership has bid or forced to game on power.

This doesn't qualify. In view of the vulnerability, South is hoping to make, but there is no reason to believe that based on power, he might just have a great fit. I will take a sot at 6, but I'm gambling. I would hate to be forced to take that gamble or be forced to double a contract that might make.
Jan. 16
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This actually makes some sense. It seems to be an impossible sequence, a more complicated analogue of 1NT-3NT-4NT, which can only mean opener is making a misteak,
Jan. 16
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My judgement reduced to a rule would look like:

2-good 3-bad 3-4 shading it a bit in third seat, tightening a bit in second seat.
Jan. 15
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The option should be in the poll, but I'd assume 15-17and voted accordingly.
Jan. 15
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With this beefy club suit and two side aces, I'm going aggressive and opening 1 intending to jump.

After 1, 2NT is best–if we have a slam, it might be 6NT, and I want to assure the opening lead rides up to AQ.

After 1, the lead consideration go the other way and I bid 3 to let partner grab the no trump.

After 1, 2NT, same logic as 1, but if I have a gadget for “values for 3, but only three trump” (Bridge World Hand of Death), I use it.
Jan. 15
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Christopher would just love Romex (sarcasm alert), with four strong, forcing openings (1NT, 2, 2, 2NT), the first three artificial, the last showing balanced 25-26.
Jan. 14
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If partner dragooned me into playing continuous, I'd raise 3 but I'd be guessing. Now were we playing intermediate or better, I'm much more comfortable with the raise.
Jan. 14
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This is not strong enough for 2NT max, and too strong for 2NT min. I think it is good enough to overcall 1, planning to reverse into hearts, if you think it isn't, treat it as 5-5 shape and overcall 1. If you go low, sell to 4. If you go high, bid 4NT over 4 if you can't bid hearts at a lower level.
Jan. 14
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A note for ACBL players (and other jurisdictions with similiar rules). The 3/3 fragment transfers are alerts, not announcements, they don't meet the definition or “transfer” as I understand it.
Jan. 14
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More like almost all Gerber is Stupor Gerber.
Jan. 14
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I have made some edits to reflect solving a long standing problem. I finally figured out how to use 1NT-2-2-2 on hands with four spades at the cost of missing a 4-4 spade fit if the invitation is rejected. So 1NT-2-2-3 becomes a natural invitation, and 1NT-2-2-3 is balanced slam try only. Other sequences are unaffected.
Jan. 12
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Get bridge the h-e-double-hockey-sticks out of the Olympic movement NOW. In the name of the bridge gods, sever all ties. The IOC can barely govern physical sports, how can they govern a “mindsport” of which they know nothing?
Jan. 11
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Somewhat, but still playable. Tweak to taste. Where the method really shines is with msjor-minor two-suiters. Thank to Justin Lall for his extended transfer notes.
Jan. 11
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Also very workable. I'll be giving it a try.
Jan. 11
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It's a question of partnership agreements, or rather the lack of them. If the partnership promises a decent hand for 2NT, North has an obvious invite or maybe just a 5 bid. If they are playing split range, South won't bid 2NT, and if they are playing continuous range = anything from a preempt to a rock crusher, it is unplayable: if they want to be able to have constructive auctions when responder has a good hand, tey need to change agreements.
Jan. 11
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