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Can systems be too well defined?

Just wondering if anyone else has encountered this problem and would like to discuss.


I'm not an expert player by any means, but as I got more experienced in bridge.  I started picking up more and more conventions.  Many I like, some I don't really care for.  Rubenshol, transfer after major double, kaplan, multi 2d, smolen, transfer response to 1c, kick back, reverse 2 way drury, goldman slam try, spiral scan, Kokish, support x and xx various relay big club systems, bunch of artificial bids I don't even know the names of or if they have names.  The list goes on and on, but I'm not here to discuss my repetoir, especially knowing there are much better players on here.  My point is to say there's so many really good gadgets and gizmos.While I like having a lot of conventions in most situations.  It gets to the point it's so saturated there's some glaring downsides.  Memory strain is an issue, it interferes with your concentration and judgement especially when you're learning new things or playing with a new partner.  I believe anyone that says it doesn't isn't being honest with themselves.  But even if you have the systems down pat and it's at the point where it's like breathing and memory isn't an issue, one problem I've noticed is in mid and upper level stages of the auction, especially if it's competitive, is that back in the day you had some strange bids to be punt bids or you can conceive a wierd sequence that shows your exact hand.  But now often times those bids are no longer available because your system is saturated and everything means something.  I try my best to not play conventions which have questionable gains, yet still sometimes finding a bid can be hard and you have to chose between the least of all evils instead of a bid you would like to make.I find a lot of newer players mistakenly think that the more well defined every single bid is the better and they want to fill every space and sequence to show a specific hand.  But in practice sometimes I find it better to have a little more air and have the bidding be more of a puzzle solving problem.

Agree/Disagree?  Thoughts/Suggestions?

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