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All comments by Cornelia Yoder
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@Jeff … “ how are we, as a community, supposed to teach play?”

Jeff, as a teacher, one of the first things I do is try to assess how my student is thinking about the hands. Sometimes I even ask them.

Once I have some clues about that, I try to provide the hands and information in a format that works for them. If they like hearing, I talk a lot. If they like trial and error, I sit back and let them figure it out. And so on.

Being a good teacher (of anything) requires you to go beyond your own thinking methods to recognize and work with those of your students. In a group, you need to present the same info in several ways so that everyone has a chance to see/hear it in the way that works best for them.
April 18
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I don't think there is a single good answer to this question. People think very differently … some like words, some like diagrams and pictures, some prefer to read, some prefer to hear, and some do everything by trial and error.

Thus each person has to develop a way to visualize that works for their particular brain. I cannot teach them how to do it because I can't know how their brain works.

So… When I teach on BBO, I tell my students to write info down as they bid and play a hand. After a few lessons, they will have organized how they write it in some form that works for them.

Not too long after that, they tell me that they no longer need to write things down, because now they can visualize in their head just as they wrote it on the paper.
April 16
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I made a webpage for my students and tell them to memorize it.

https://www.onlinebridgelessons.com/handdistributions.php

When they claim they have it memorized, I send them to the Counting Game practice page for 5 minutes a day.

https://bridgewinners.com/pages/counting-game/

(Some of them actually do this :) )

And thanks to BW for preserving the Counting Game when the original webpage disappeared.
April 16
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I dunno about batty … I played 7N once off an ace. The opening lead was not that suit and I managed to take 13 tricks in the other three suits. At the end of the hand, the opening leader said (exact quote), “I guess I should have cashed my ace.”

There are a lot of ways to be batty :)
April 9
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To be honest, I came here looking for what would be this year's April Fool article. It wasn't too hard to spot :) If only it were true ….
April 1
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I believe bridge used to be a game in which you were supposed to think.
March 27
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I know someone who constantly moves cards around in his hand to help him count. No idea how he's doing his counting but I do know that he is a very visual person, and actually seeing patterns is far easier for him than merely visualizing them.
March 27
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IMHO, taking advantage of “table feel” is something that should be illegal in bridge. Hence my love of electronic bridge.

However, since it IS legal, then it is extremely unfair if the victims of it are not allowed to counter it with false “table feel” actions. Hence my love of electronic bridge.
March 16
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I also did this once, a very long time ago in a local club game. The declarer said, “play anything”, so I immediately said, play the diamond ace. Declarer objected, director made him play the diamond ace, and I made a permanent enemy of the declarer and his partner.

It wasn't worth it. But I myself have never since then ever said, “play anything”.
March 16
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It depends on your method of hand evaluation for opening bids. I count LTC of 7, and that is supposed to be an opening hand. So if you play LTC as your guide to opening, that's a 1 opening bid.
March 16
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I highly recommend this excellent article by Steve Robinson on this subject:

http://www.districtsix.org/Articles/Article%202006-02.aspx

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March 16
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Caffeine is on the WADA restricted list?
March 3
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This sounds like 5 spades and 7+ clubs, with not a lot of points. Checks for a spade fit and then bids game in clubs (fast arrival, so no slam interest).
Feb. 25
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I seriously doubt that the sorter realized what he was doing. Whether or not his partner noticed is another question, but what you did was right – mention it quietly to the TD and let him/her deal with it.

I made the same mistake several years ago. Playing in a regional against a well-known pair (one of whom later won the BB), I noticed that my LHO was picking up his played cards, and tapping them on edge with the faces toward his partner. He would then shuffle through them shifting each one from bottom to top, revealing each card in the played card stack to his partner.

It appeared to me to be a constant nervous habit, and I watched his partner over the next hand and s/he never once looked at them.

So rather than get upset, I decided to just point it out to him (assuming he didn't realize he was doing it), rather than get the TD involved.

After the round was over, I quietly asked him if he was aware he was doing it. He went ballistic, accusing me of accusing him of cheating, so I just left with his “how dare you…” echoing behind me.

It was egregious and obvious, but to this day, I believe it was unconscious. I only hope my calling attention to it made him aware and that he was able to stop doing it.

His reaction, however, made it clear that talking to the TD would have been a better choice. The TD could have watched a hand and then discussed it privately with him, and avoided the bad feelings.
Feb. 24
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I point out that your 66% is 66% of the people who subscribe to this forum and care enough to answer a poll. That does not include a very huge number of people who play 2/1 but don't come here, most of them well below National Class.
Feb. 22
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“A king better than minimum” works quite well as a guideline for 3 level bids (exception=raising pard's hearts). I just teach “about 15+ pts” which is a bit easier for learners. It works just fine and keeps the bidding low with weakish or poor distribution hands (5332 comes to mind). When you get to National Class, feel free to invent whatever you want, but for those starting 2/1, this guideline makes a lot of sense.
Feb. 21
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It's a bit insane to bypass a 4 card spade suit to bid a 3 card minor or even a 4 or bad 5 card minor just for the purpose of GF. If the minor is good and the spades are poor, fine, but there is absolutely no reason not to bid 1S with GF values. There is always 4th Suit Forcing if you need to GF later.
Feb. 21
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It seems wrong to equate explicit rules (“… Do not pass GO, do not collect $200”) with unwritten, barely known, unobvious “rules” that apply only in unusual situations that most players don't even realize exist.

If it is a rule that when you think, then you must play lowest of touching, it must be written down and made clear to the playing public.
Feb. 20
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There are a few conventions I avoid because I miss them too often, so it wouldn't surprise me if this is the real reason your partner doesn't want to play them.

Support Doubles are easy to miss and easy to forget to use because there is nothing that jumps out at you. The only way to remember them is to recognize the situation where they are used.

I suggest that you and your partner sit down at a bidding table on BBO and generate a lot of hands that would use Support X and XX, and just bid them – over and over until the situation becomes the trigger to remember.
Feb. 14
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NATURAL

There are two ways to show the other two suits …. Unusual NT with a weaker distributional hand, and Double with a stronger hand not necessarily long suits. No need for the cue bids to be anything except natural.
Jan. 24
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