pretty thrilling to be in ny times.
ok, beginner's mind. no worries. i'm all alone here.
let's start by mentioning how incredible amy winehouse is and how I could listen to back to black a million times.
inspiration is important.
amateur team east--- was pretty fun. I roomed with Abby Marshall, who is the coolest 16 year old ever. It's constantly a surprise to me that I don't feel the age difference when i hang out with her, but this is the beautiful thing about chess, right, that it enables people to be friends across normal barriers of age, gender, class, etc.? I was talking to an old student, Anna Ginzburg, and someone peripheral asked if it wasn't strange to make this adjustment from teacher-student to friend, but chess I think enables this. I remember noticing this most acutely with Aleks Wojt., who most people remember as an obnoxious drunk, but I found his stories pretty amusing. Anyway, things I admire about Abby:
1. She's remarkably chill and easy-going, but simultaneously tastefully discerning.
2. She beat Nakamura at bughouse but geniunely seems to think it's neither surprising nor remarkable.
Change of topic: let's look at some funny positions from kids' games.
Nicolas Polanco (IS 318)- Jiri Jranko
1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cd 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. f4 b5 7. e5 de 8. fe Nd5 9. Qf3 Bb7
OK, the next position is not a child's, but from a teacher at my school who comes with us sometimes to tournaments. He was the first guy from the school who I worked with, and, while he is an excellent trip planner, he's less ... focused (just one s because the stress is on the first sylllable?) when he plays chess. I have a very strong memory of an early game of his that I went over, from Amateur Team in maybe 2001, in which he had some position like below, except with many more pieces.
So there is a lot more going on, but the point is that this guy is white and has the black king completely shut out of play. He moves Rb3-b8, so I ask him why. It's a pretty standard question for me-- I like to know why and I like the kids to expect the question. His response? "I was afraid that later I would forget the pawn was defending my rook and I would move it and then the king would take my rook." How incredible is this? The man is making a prophylactic move against his own imagined future stupidity. I just didn't know what to say. So this year he is fourth board on a team rated 1400ish, and he's playing a 1600.
Lauris Murnieks (1100) - Alex Bary (1500)
1.Nf3 e6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 c5 4.0–0 Nc6 5.d3 Qb6 6.Nbd2 Bd7 7.e4 Nce7 8.c3 d4 9.Nc4 Qc7 10.Bf4
Ok and finally a reasonable problem:
Sasha Jouraview- Markel Brown (IS 318) 13....?
Amusing note about this kid: he won the k-8 Under 1000 section last year despite falling asleep in one of his games. He's one of my favorite students: always cheerful, interested, and genuinely trying to improve.
1. 10.e6! fxe6 (10...f6 11.Ndxb5 axb5 12.Bxb5+ Bc6 13.Bxc6+ Nxc6 14.Nxd5) 11.Nxe6 (11.Qh5+) 11...Qb6 (11...Qd6 12.Nf4 Nxf4 13.Qxb7 Qc6 14.Qxc6+ Nxc6 15.Bxf4) 12.Qh5+ g6 13.Qe5 Nf6 (13...Rg8 14.Nxd5) 14.Nc7+
3. 13... g5! 14.Nxd7 [14.Bxg5 Nxe5] 14...gxf4 15.Nde5 fxg3 16.hxg3 -+
So what else? I visited Greg in Philly for a couple days. He taught me the English and Accelerated Dragon.. I think I'm gonna switch. As much as I love the Sveshnikov, I always lose all my games....
I bought a cat playground for my cats... don't think I'm a crazy old spinster here, please, I know how it looks..... but I just figured it would provide me with endless amusement...
Here's a headline about my school: http://www.escueladeajedrez.org/News_View.aspx?Articleid=92
The article originally appeared in the New York Spanish daily El Diario, but they don't have an online index I could understand.
We've been reading Romeo and Juliet, so I showed my class the Di Caprio/ Danes 1996 version today-- that movie truly is an English teacher's godsend. I fastforward through the violent/sexy bits, ok, but really what a great job they did. It epitomizes the whole concept of contemporary. Although I think Danes was a weak link.
I'm going to Sturbridge next weekend to play... small consolation for the fact that Foxwoods doesn't coincide with spring break for me this year and thus is out. But I will be at all 3 (4) scholastic nationals this year: elementary, junior high, high school and girls'.