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All comments by Alan Martin
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You have shoes?? :)
March 29
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“But then, if I were English…”

What exactly do you mean by this?
March 27
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I am a not-disinterested ‘rank & file’ member of the EBU. Perhaps I should also ‘confess’ that I watch international matches on BBO as well as the play in the Vanderbilt etc, etc.

I'm a former member of a couple of similar organisations in another field in the UK, one of which was an NBO equivalent. One of the biggest problems is in dealing with disputes and the like where there is potential for bias. It is very important to observe the Principles of Natural Justice - in this case that justice must not only be done but be seen to be done. It seems clear from the comments of John Cox, Norman Selway and Sarah Teshome that the EBU has failed in this. If so, it is not the way an NBO should behave and could leave the EBU open to legal action. When things like this go wrong, the people at the top typically stick their heads in the sand and hope it all goes away!

I know from experience that it is very difficult for an NBO to deal with this. Not surprisingly, the central issue (of justice not having been seen to have been done) has not been addressed. Instead, we see personal attacks and excuses. I have heard the excuse before that the people involved are volunteers which, apparently, somehow absolves them of responsibility when things go wrong. Sorry, but that is just not good enough.

In my view, this issue has seriously damaged the EBU's reputation. (However, I don't suppose for a second that the EBU hierarchy views it like that!) The question is: how is confidence to be restored? I think the EBU should take Richard Fleet's advice.
March 26
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Yes. 3 is Puppet Stayman and 3NT is the system bid. Good job I failed to persuade my partner to play Muppet!
March 11
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Ed,

Would you say that it would be obvious that the bidding had gone off the rails if I had alerted 3 and then had to explain 3 was Puppet Stayman?

A Big Thank You for all your very helpful comments - very much appreciated! You can see that I need all the help I can get!!
March 9
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Double dummy, EW can make 4NT or 5.

Two pairs were in 3NT, one just making and the other +2.

Three pairs were in 5, one just making and the other two were down 1. Another pair was in 4 making +1.
March 9
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Yu,

While I didn't alert my partner's 3 (I was somewhat shocked!), in our system it is Puppet Stayman. My 3NT bid was in even tempo and was the right reply.
March 9
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David,

I am 3=3=4=3 (17hcp) and my partner is 5=1=2=5 (9hcp).

So you are saying that we should bid on to 5/6/7 while everybody at the table knows the wheels have come off the bidding?

If so, once the opening lead has been made, I might as well throw in the towel, face my hand and ask how many tricks they would like.

Or maybe I should just punt 7 before conceding - just in case!!
March 9
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Rosalind/Jeff/Michael:

I had a 17hcp balanced hand without a 4-card or 5-card Major. We play Puppet and I would re-bid 3nt over 3 Puppet.

So you are saying that I should have alerted 3 and if asked said it was Puppet Stayman? That might raise an eyebrow (or two) after my partner announced my 2NT showed the minors!
March 9
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Thanks, Gonzalo.

One of my (many) faults is that I tend to be too aggressive in the bidding. I had decided at outset to play the hand, provide that it wasn't above game. Everything followed from that! Next time I'll pass as I normally do when my partner tanks.
March 9
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Ed: “At what point did LHO reserve his rights?”

Unfortunately, I don't remember whether it was before or after I bid 4.
March 9
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Ken,

I didn't ask him - I don't think it would do any good. He's done it before - and I normally pass.

Last night he also forgot one of our agreements and made up an agreement we didn't have! He's a good card player but his memory is not so good at times. I think he gets confused and switches to conventions that he plays with his other partners.
March 9
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@Alan: "… is now second on my list of worst conventions"

What's first on your list?
March 7
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Brett: I didn't think there would be too many Trekies on BW! I just thought that Balok looked a bit like me - although my wife doesn't agree. My face is, in fact, somewhat more rotund!

I wouldn't say that I have a dual personality. I am a ‘self-actualizer’ as described by Abraham Maslow of Hierarchy of Needs fame. You can find the characteristics here: http://www.100bestwebsites.org/alt/Maslow16.htm

For anyone interested, info about Balok can be found here: http://www.startrek.com/database_article/corbomite-maneuver-the
Dec. 23, 2017
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Kerry,

Our leads are closer than you think!

With both partners I play UDCA, but standard count in suits we've led.

With Partner #2 I play Reverse Smith and Trump SP. I am expecting to move soon to A=Att, K=Count/Unblock, Q or lower: Rusinow. I simply haven't mentioned the latter to him yet because he's had to cope with so many unfamiliar (for him) conventions.

I have been heavily influenced by Defensive Signals by Marshall Miles. I have a fairly large bridge library including all the books that I could find by Marshall Miles, some inadvertently bought twice!
Dec. 15, 2017
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Thanks to everyone for the very helpful comments.

I do like to accomodate my partners when I can. We have now agreed to play Odd - Revolving Even Discards!
Dec. 15, 2017
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Thanks to everyone for the very helpful comments. I've told my partner I don't want to play Strong 10s!
Dec. 15, 2017
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Kerry,

Thank you for your helpful comments. My partners and I get our fair share of good/bad results and so I'm not looking for a magic wand. What I do want is good, sound agreements that I can play against both strong and weak opposition. Sometimes the opponents are very strong.

I have the Journalist Leads book but, when I last looked at it, I decided that it was too complicated for most people. There are a lot of people here in the UK who are, let's say, set (stuck?) in their ways.

With my two regular partners in NT we play -
Ptr 1: 4th highest; A=Attitude K=Unblock/Count otherwise Rusinow
Ptr 2: Attitude Leads; Rusinow

I don't think Strong 10s would work too well in suit contracts for which we play -
Ptr 1: 4th highest; Rusinow
Ptr 2: 3rd & Lowest; Rusinow

Any comments/suggestions are welcome.
Dec. 15, 2017
Alan Martin edited this comment Dec. 15, 2017
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I would be delighted to order the paperback edition (I don't like electronic) if it were not for the $25 cost of shipping to the UK - pity about that!
Sept. 21, 2017
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