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All comments by Chris Gibson
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Mike, you said the criteria are “whether a drug is performance enhancing and harmful”. I'm simply pointing out that harmful is not a particularly useful standard, as almost everything can be described as harmful to some bodily function or other. A cheeseburger between sessions can both enhance my performance by reducing my distraction from hunger, but still be harmful to my body - I know that its an example at the logical extreme, but its not obvious to me that using harmful as criteria won't allow similar stupidity to abound.

Obviously you can draw a line. The line has been drawn, bridge players have been suspended from international competition for crossing the line. The only relevant questions are whether you should draw the line, and where.
March 6, 2019
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sure. I'm not saying that. But telling other people what is and is not harmful, especially in the area of legal drugs, is not a business I want my bridge organizations to be in. I mean, for almost any drug there are harmful side effects possible even if taken in recommended doses as proscribed by a doctor - its just that the belief is that the possibility of harm is outweighed by the good that it is likely to do.
March 6, 2019
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Mike, you've addressed your comment to me, but I have no idea what criteria you are talking about or to what are you responding. I might be being thick, but its not deliberate.
March 6, 2019
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Would any hand with 4 hearts, spade shortage, and GF values bid 3, or is it defined more tightly than that? Do we have a guaranteed 8 card diamond fit?
March 6, 2019
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ok. But in order to evaluate whether a banned list is appropriate, I actually need to see the answers to the questions. Also, I don't see anyone who said no one could object to the consumption of an energy drink - I know you did not attribute it to anyone, but I don't want people to read your response and assume that's what I said or meant. But, once again, I believe there is a logical fallacy comparing a mental game to a physical sport and assuming that such a comparison will provide valuable insight.

I guess that means that there probably exist some circumstances where I would think that some stimulant should be on a banned list - but I have only the vaguest notion of what those circumstances are, and I'm not nearly as enthusiastic about the possibilities of making real life decisions based on theoretical conditions as others are.
March 6, 2019
Chris Gibson edited this comment March 6, 2019
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My hand is nowhere good enough for Namyats. Anything other than 1 is beyond me, especially 2nd seat.
March 6, 2019
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this is a double-pull hand opposite a partner that voluntarily made a non-pass call showing some values. This is forcing.
March 6, 2019
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I think there is a big difference between those things that allow you to compete at your highest potential, and those that extend beyond your highest potential.

I also think that there is a real slippery slope argument at bridge - some people need coffee. I need a good night's sleep, and to avoid heavy foods between sessions. Some people can't play without occasional nicotine infusions. I had a partner who downed energy drinks. Where do you draw the line?

Also, is there actual scientific evidence about the effects of those drugs on your ability to play bridge, or are we relying on one person's anecdotal evidence? How does the apparently mind-altering drug impact a person's ability to be objective about their bridge-playing abilities? Is the effect consistent, and are there control groups to compare to?

I think that making a banned substance list without considering those questions and a myriad of others that I'm sure exist is ill-conceived at best. I have seen no evidence that any of these questions were actually considered, just an application of the same rules governing active sports largely played by people under 40 to a sedentary game largely played by people over 60, without consideration as to whether it makes sense.
March 6, 2019
Chris Gibson edited this comment March 6, 2019
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I'm the sole vote for 6. I can see having to ruff a diamond with a short trump to make them good.
March 5, 2019
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Gerben - should be as in your opinion, or should be as in bridge law?
March 1, 2019
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“ostensibly 15-17, but with frequent upgrades”
Feb. 28, 2019
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Having never played in a WBF event, and with no plans of doing so in the future no matter what their disciplinary policy is, I feel like my “boycott” would be ineffective at best.
Feb. 28, 2019
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If I had a way to know that partner had the j of diamonds, I'd bid 7n, if he had the j of spades, 7.
Feb. 19, 2019
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I think only the people who never preempt with 5 first seat would pass this. Otherwise it is perfect - 2 shows where we live, we're short in the other major, the suit is very good, and vulnerability is such that we are unlikely to be punished.
Feb. 19, 2019
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hopefully you don't learn that partner thinks you made a penalty double, looking at his void :)
Feb. 19, 2019
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Why the hell would I ever puppet with this? Its a clear 2 or 3N hand, IMO, with the slow values and spot cards, as well as no ruffing values, making NT very much superior to 4M. Probably 3N because vul imps, but even so…

Additionally, by employing stayman, I have reduced the declarer advantage by helping opponents with his shape, and probably with their opening lead and subsequent defense.
Feb. 19, 2019
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Russ, I also have a 1 year old, with another on the way, and am having trouble finding time for live bridge as a result. How have you been able to balance family life, bridge, bridge administration, and professional obligations?
Feb. 19, 2019
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Thank you.
Feb. 19, 2019
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Congratulations on your election Russ. Is the current board of directors too large to be effective? Can you commit to a greater degree of transparency in board and management decisions, at least with regards to the information available to other board members, which has reportedly been restricted under previous presidencies?
Feb. 19, 2019
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Anant - I don't know that it matters that much, as long as you've defined it one way or another. The only partner I've had who played it preferred it to be as I defined.
Feb. 18, 2019
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