Join Bridge Winners
All comments by David Caprera
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He gets in to play a second spade when Grandma makes sushi for Thanksgiving.
June 21
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If it is a girl, name her after your grandmother; if it is a boy, name him after your wife's grandfather.

Actually, south gets squeezed without the count in three suits and then north gets squeezed in two, so call it a “32 skidoo.”

(Seriously, it is an unusual position and I don't know what to call it other than, “a compound squeeze without the count.”)
June 20
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Particularly when you are vulnerable and the opponents are not and in third chair all white, I believe you are seeing the top American players returning to methods which employ penalty doubles. For example, Meckwell don't always play Meckwell. Inflation runs rampant. 15-17 is now more like 14-16, a good 13 with a 5 or 6 card minor looks like a strong notrump, and in third chair white there are no guarantees. The problem isn't so much seeking a penalty as it is the opponents blowing you out of your cold game.
June 20
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I voted but I have to admit that I would have opened a 15-17 notrump
June 20
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In Wyoming, 5D would say, “ I know you have a diamond void. I have either the diamond K or QJ” with 6D a further ask and 6N showing the QJ, 7C to show the K. Isn't down one good bridge?
June 19
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I used to play a whacko, home-grown forcing pass system in a local club. We would pre-alert. The club owner had two rules. First, if an opponent chose not to play against it we would play standard (rarely would anyone say “no”). Second, if there was any problem (e.g., misinformation, failure to alert, misunderstandings between us), the director would rule in favor of the opponents, no debate. It was never an issue.

When I ran the student game at the University of Chicago, there were no rules limiting systems. Along with the usual “little major”, “EHAA” and “Archer” (Chicago south siders may remember Archer; it might even still exist), my favorite was “No look.” We also played “Egdirb” where the club deuce was the highest ranked card in the highest ranked suit, and on Valentine's Day the Saturday game run by Steve Cheung played with hearts outranking spades.

No, these were not serious games but it was fun and I believe it can make you a better player, both playing such methods and playing against them. I think we sometimes forget bridge is a game meant to be enjoyed.
June 17
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I know no one else, who when he says, “the hand was misplayed”, causes me to stop what I am doing and take the time to figure out what is correct. Had anyone else said that, there would be a hint of doubt that, maybe, it was played correctly. And only when I am done confirming that you are correct can I get back to worrying about the rest of my life.
June 16
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Opening 1N on 5M and 4m doesn't work for me unless my wood is all in the doubletons. A suit of AKxxx is not going to be that hand. Yes, after 1S-1N-2D-2S, I would bid 2N and feel I have given an adequate description of my hand. If I go down looking for my game bonus, too bad.

But, I suck at matchpoints and I will defer to others like JDonn for their matchpoint experience. At imps, I think 1S-1N-2D is clear. And on a really good day partner is dealt
xx, xx, AQxxx, AQxx and I play 5D while you can all labor in 3N on a heart lead. :)
June 15
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I actually do have a serious piece of advice given to me by Gerald Caravelli 40 years ago when I didn't have 100 masterpoints. After a bad result against him, he said, “Don't steal from the one seed.”

I also have a true Gerald story from the same era. Back then (late 70's), Gerald was the seeding committee for all Chicago tournaments. My partner and I had won our first sectional one session pairs game. Next session we proudly marched up to the seeding desk and said, “We would like a seed. We are the defending champions.” Without missing a beat, Gerald said, “Congratulations. Here is table one North-South.”
June 12
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But if you sell 2D to show hearts (and 2H to show spades), then the relay starts with 2S and you can't get as many patterns out below 3N. I would not want to sell 2D, but your agreements certainly have merit.
June 11
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After the 3N bid, your friend and mine says “you can't go directly from economy to first class, need to go to business class first.” 4D is a big noise for clubs, not KCB but then 4H can be.
June 11
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“Warning: Advertisement Coming.” If you are going to play Kokish, you should play Sikkoh (scrambled Kokish). Many have gone to swapping 3C and 3H, but “game ordered bidding” works better. 2C-2D-2H-2S-?, then 3C is just hearts with 3D then second neg, 3D as 5H+4S, 3H as H+C, and 3S as H+D.
June 11
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2C-2M was originally forcing one round, but then moved to not forcing. (“Matchpoint Precision” - Wei and Andersen? I suspect that much of this history depended on whether 2C is 6+ C or could be 5C and 4M (IMHO, unplayable.))

Recently, I sense there is a drift back to 2M as forcing one round. Having played various strong club methods for almost 40 years, it makes life so much easier. Unless you have a partnership that wants to work on a bunch of low frequency, small upside auctions, go with 2M as forcing 1 round (can pass 2N? (you choose, could be forcing to 3C), 3C, 3M).

After that, the rest is easy. One other simple agreement is that 2C-2D-bananas-3D is the big club raise.

One other observation. The range is subject to “inflation.” KQJ6th and an outside K looks like a 2C opener. Many ways to win. On the other hand, a 6322 15 count looks like a strong notrump.

2C is not the poster child of strong club methods.
June 11
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“Don't have sex with a girl you would be unwilling to marry.” That was father's entire course on sex education. Annie and I are going on 42 years. Is it time yet?
June 11
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It is pretty simple, really. First, anyone who joins the ACBL gets 10,000 masterpoints just for signing up. But it takes 100,000 to make life master. Then you add requirements that they win colored points, not just black, silver, red and gold, but cumquat, fuschia and mauve, which can only be won when the moon aligns with Mars. But the real key is not that the points erode over time (that idea actually makes sense) but that they explode, destroying not only themselves but those of their last three partners and all immediate family members.
June 10
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Gazzilli, what is it good for? Say it, say it, say it, say it.
June 9
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Huh, yeah, good god. I only have limited experience and typically play a strong club system where it would make no sense, but I can really see the merits. Coupled with forcing one round opening bids (e.g., Finntunes), one can handle constructive auctions extremely well.

It gains over strong club in competitive auctions but loses to strong club in two ways. First, the limited opening bid is a great advantage with 1M-4M being a big winner. Also, you lose a level of bidding room starting with 2C as opposed to 1C.

But is there anything really wrong with Gazilli? Yes, I believe Leo Gazzilli spelled his last name with two “z's”. But otherwise, “absolutely nothing”.
June 9
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“The stopper showing jump cuebid.” For example, (1H)-3H. “I have a heart stopper. If you have 8 running tricks, bid 3N.”

Following closely behind is the “(Ethnicity or Region of your choice) Redouble.” 1X-(DBL)-RDBL, “they got us.”
June 8
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"Anyone who plays very much shouldn't have accidents even with first time partnerships" must not ever bid hearts and raise diamonds. Consider 1S-2H-3D-4D-? Here I think Kickback is 4N, but you must be taking more time to fill out that first time partnership convention card than I think most do.
June 8
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I play double as majors, not necessarily extra values. I expect our spade fit to play reasonably well. If that isn't BW standard, too bad.
June 7
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