Join Bridge Winners
All comments by David Yates
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ... 212 213 214 215
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Who screwed up on board #5? You had a great game going.

Looks good Daniel, I will have to give it a spin.
5 hours ago
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
If Russ was at the table there was going to be good bridge and it was going to be lots of fun. Russ' enthusiasm for bridge and life was contagious. This is really sad news.
8 hours ago
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Just bid these games against me. The spades would block, the round aces with the short spades and the diamonds 2-2.

No problem.

I would not have bid 3NT with the South hand and I would have bid 4 over 3NT - assuming partner made an in-tempo 3NT and did not bar me. What hand that bid 2 only diamonds makes 3NT?

3 cannot be wrong. If opener held a fifth diamond:
x / KQxxx / AKxxx / Qx then 5 is making unless 0-3 trumps. And with A instead of KQ, you have play for 6.

3NT is not going to be right in these situations. Slow cards, 14 only points, no fit. If you had chance for a a game on power, responder would have rebid 2NT.
8 hours ago
David Yates edited this comment 8 hours ago
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
And for yet another answer. . . (I assume 12HCP was just going to GF)

It is completely legal in Basic and higher charts - so any event really. The provision legalizing it is:

“2. Any game forcing response at the 2 level or higher.”

If 2 could be fewer than four cards, it does, however, not meet the charts definition of “natural”, which is:

“Any opening bid, response, or overcall in a suit at the one-level showing 4 or more cards in the suit bid, except as provided in 2(f) and 2(g)”

(2f & 2g refer to 1m openings.)

POP QUIZ: If a bid is not natural, what is it? Conventional.

That was not hard. Most conventions require an alert (or a delayed alert if over 3NT). So when the Alert charts shows there is no alert for “2/1 responses that promise invitational or better values”, that assumes a NATURAL response. 2 is this context falls into: “Other conventional responses” which require an alert as per the chart.

Legal and requires an alert.
22 hours ago
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Jonathan (and sis) are correct about membership fees versus entry fees. The reason is price elasticity.

Essentials without substitutes are relatively inelastic. Gasoline. Daraprim. Consumers do not have viable alternatives and need to pay the price increase. The membership fee is inelastic. If one wants to play in ACBL events (or the golf events), one needs to be a member. For years, I opted for the substitute of “non-member” because I did not give a damn about the MPs. When they raised rates for non-members, there was no practical substitution. So I am stuck with those membership fees.

However, members can - and do - pick and choose what tournaments to enter. Therefore, substitutes are available. We can easily test as to whether entry fees are fairly elastic or inelastic.

Regional “A” - middle of nowhere, $11 entry fees
Regional “B” - middle of the most densely populated area in the country $22.50 entry fees

Which draws more, Gatlinburg or New York City?

NYC isn’t TRYING to drive people away. Manhattan is expensive for reasons that have absolutely nothing to do with GNYBA. The District just has to deal with being in one of the most expensive areas of the country. And they do a great job in NYC if the ACBL is going to charge what they plan to charge at say, Columbus Ohio.

The reality is many players in the tri-state area will substitute some tournaments with others based on cost. This effects the NYC attendance. The same way lots of people staying at the Hilton substituted the $26 hamburger for a $5 bucket of chicken from the Colonel. (Or whatever was the option).

As the regionally rated events at the NABCs become less price competitive, participation rates will drop. The same way no one was standing in line for those hamburgers.

No rational company raises prices nilly-willy without understanding the price elasticity of the demand for their product. Hilton can charge $26 for the burger because there will be enough demand for on-site convenience from people staying on expense accounts and value their convenience over other people’s money. Not many, but Hilton got to that pricing by understanding what segment was relatively inelastic and what wasn’t, in order to maximize net profit.

There is no large, inelastic base in bridge. I calculate that we could charge a $14,000.00 screen charge to those “rich” sponsors to try to make the money the ACBL needs. But I bet they now substitute Biarritz for the Spingold. What makes the Spingold is not just the history. It is the players who contest it now. If you lose them, what makes you think they are coming back when you drop the screen surcharge?

Similarly, if some goes to a “Nationals” to see rooms full of empty tables, somehow the excessive rate does not seem to justify the experience. Once you lose them, why are they coming back? What is your sales pitch? “We decided to stop ripping you off?”

This is why companies are very careful and calculating about their pricing structure. It seems from what Jonathan relates that the ACBL was reckless and foolhardy.

Change creates change. Expect not a resolution, but bigger problems in the future.
23 hours ago
ATB
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I don’t understand why “4m always forcing” is a principle. It should be forcing only when an auction is sufficiently crowded that is no non-forcing route available.

North would bid the same with: Kxxx / Axx /xx / Kxxx
South would bid the same with: Axx / Qx / KJxx / Axxx

If North is not sure whether 4 is SPL, cue again and pull 3NT to 4. That is obviously forcing and slam try. Which is what he holds.
Dec. 12
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Perhaps there is an approach that would be acceptable to everyone. Over here we have Chris & company calling for bans. The bleeding hearts over there. The Sports Court judges drooling on themselves in that corner.

Perhaps the solution that keeps everyone happy is a proper structure. I propose that we need to reward cheating.

How could they sue us if we rewarded them for their behavior? I think we should create a whole new category of point awards. Not master points or placing points. A special category of points for “Coactions Having Exceeded All The Established Regulatory Statutes.” Because I do not want to cast aspersions calling the putrid points.

Bridge has a long, established history now of various flights. And when someone earns a certain level of points he is no longer qualified to play in the event. One has to move up. No one argues that point. Lets define events like the Bermuda Bowl, Zonal and National Championships as limited events. When someone earns enough of these special points for “creativity”, that person is now promoted to the new Laissez-faire Bracket.

This is the super-open bracket. We even open the windows because it stinks in there. And in the Laissez-faire bracket, ANYTHING GOES. Heck, you can even hit your opponent with a 2x4 because we don’t care. Players now get to do anything to win. And we approve.

Laissez-faire bracket is a tough event. Heck, no one can win against those folks playing our version of “limited” bridge. Sure you cannot hire these guys to play in the Spingold any more than you used to be able to hire them for the Red Ribbons. Too many points. But anyone can hire them for the super-open bracket of Laissez-faire.

Just give them the category they deserve, earned and heck, even created. Who can argue against that?

And we still get to charge them entry fees.
Dec. 12
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
The hesitation is an irregularity. Big difference.
Dec. 11
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
With 27 combined HCP and an 8-card major suit fit, any determination of it “not being a good game” is not possible during the bidding.

South could have done more once North showed an interest in playing the 3-level with X (hence 3 is bad in that context) and North should have done more one South took a free bid over 3 as North could have held less for X (hence pass is bad in that context)
Dec. 11
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I am not surprised that we finally hit such a drop-off. The NABC contracts are negotiated well in advance of the event. The NABC tournament attendance was going to drop off at some point given the advancing ages of the participants. It just was not certain exactly when “I am too old for this &#^!” was going to significantly set in. But 11 hrs flying time from NYC, plus 2 hrs before flight, plus a 1 to 1.5 hr trip to the damn airport. . .

One knows one is getting old when a pretty lady welcomes you to paradise with an offering of flowers and all you can think is “screw you sister, the airlines and the TSA”.

A client for Memphis just declined because her non-playing bridge husband is old, does not want to make the trip and wants her to make her trip away just a weekend and not a week. She is bummed because she loves Memphis. But what can one do?

Ye reap what ye sow. And this years’ harvest was a function, in part, of all the narrow-minded policies of ACBL past plantings. The policies that essentially said: “we hate younger people and no, we are never going to change to accommodate anyone other than ourselves”. (I was there, that is how it was for decades.)

In some part, the Hawaiian disaster was not the fault of Whipple or others who more or less took over the wheel of a truck careening downhill.

That being said, I am less concerned about the loss than what actions were undertaken - or not - to stem the loss. It is one thing to crash and burn. It is another altogether not to attempt to do something to lessen the impact.

What actions were considered to mitigate the loss? It seems the ACBL knew there was going to be a problem. All they had to do was read about in advance in Bridgewinners. Oh, that was posted by “ACBL Official”. So they knew.

Did they try to sell, or at least consider, selling the room blocks on a secondary market? I have no idea how these things work. But I do know (a) there is a market for everything (b) I certainly would LEARN how these things work if it might help and © $630,000 - or whatever it was - is a boat load of money. (D) if it had never been done before, I would figure out how to do it.

This is Hilton and this is Hawaii. That is valuable. Yeah, we never start with great room rates. Obviously there will be a per diem hit. Maybe even big. But it certainly cuts losses. The hotel doesn’t care who takes the room as long as they are getting paid. Hilton doesn’t give a crap if the person in the room is an active ACBL member. If fact, they would be happier if it wasn’t a bridge player. Joan Gerard used to handle much of the negotiations. She told me that our biggest problem was hotels hated us because bridge players are so damn cheap. We don’t eat there and we don’t drink there. So yeah, conventioneers with an expense account are much better, because they are spend other people’s money.

In regards to burning through OPM, what I want to know is did everyone just sit around, watch the bonfire of cash burn and play their fiddles? Or did someone actually try to find solutions? I know the ACBL watchword is normally not transparency but MYOB. But it cannot continue like this. There needs to be transparency and accountability.
Dec. 11
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
The theory of polling is to assist in deciding whether the BIT suggested that one action might be more successful than another. Practice is another matter. As in this case. The question to wimpazoid is what call do you make sitting West given an in tempo auction?

Last time I checked, the bidding box does not have an abstain card.

The secondary question is, if you were seriously considering another - do you think a BIT from partner suggests that a particular choice is now more or less favorable? If the decision is that the BIT changes the odds of East’s action, then the technical term is S&^! out of luck.

The other action a TD should take is check with pairs after they played the board and see how the auction proceeded. On this hand, some might pass South (“Only 11 points”) but I suspect that this sort of auction start will not be uncommon at the club. (I don’t like 4, but lots of people will find that bad bid).

The at-the-table auctions are good indicators. If other pairs started with the same sequence through 4/(X) it is better being able to tell N/S that “no one sold out to 4 with the West hand” as opposed to “wimpazoid won’t give me a bid”.

I cannot imagine passing with the West hand. In my book, act vs pass is not effected by the BIT. However, I do not think 4 and X are equivalent. If W reopened with X, caught N with an “unlawful” 4 bid and no 4+ level contract was making, I would change 4-X to an E/W contract down.

Conversely, had E passed the 4 balance bid on this layout, I would change 4 making to 5 down one.

The reason is that BIT suggests X & bid might produce different results. My view (the correct one) is from a practical matter, BIT’s partner tends to know what BIT was thinking about. If we can deduce partner was thinking of bidding, 4 now says: “hey, this suit is really good”. X does not carry that meaning. It would be normal (in my book) to make the P/C over X and pass the 4 reopening. That East didn’t suggests to me he either knew W was not 6/5 or West never reopens with anything but bid.

As TD, I would let the table result stand but tell E/W that if they cannot find an obvious pass with E in the 10 seconds allowed over 4, the next time I give them a PP even if W held six solid in each black suit for his reopening.

And this is why I think I may need to buy more ammo…
Dec. 10
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
This is not a pre-alert in ACBLand. I do have a partnership where both are systemically weak-twos and we alert these bids when they come up because the suit quality for our weak two-bids either meet a minimum standard, or the hand is 6-5.
Dec. 8
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Who needs 13 cards for a weak bid?
Dec. 8
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
The USBF trials arranges in advance for off-site consultation & potential committee people in the event of a problem. Everyone onsite is pretty much playing in that one event.
Dec. 8
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I remember playing against a C player at the club where their auction went: 1-1NT; Three instant hearts - 4.

Obviously declarer is at least 5-5M. Dummy hit with 2-4 in majors, I was Axxx/Kxx. So when declare lost the heart finesse, I completely missed the spade ruff since declarer was actually 6-4. After the hand, I asked RHO how he managed to find the difficult rebid so quickly. He replied that he knew he would have a problem over a 1NT response and decided that he was going to rebid 3 BEFORE he opened. I was completely amazed.

It will be a terrible world if I cannot completely figure out your hands from your tempo! Please, people, do not listen to David Burn! After all, I am already used to sitting around waiting for opponents to finally arrive.

Before you know it, players will start figuring out their defensive plays in a suit before I play it. It will be an awful future having to really guess. What fun is that?
Dec. 7
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
So any time Jan tries to smile it costs money? Bummer :(
Dec. 7
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Another dry comment from D.B. I'll need some libation now :)
Dec. 7
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
It is the cheapest Hawaiian destination. No one in their right mind STAYS in Honolulu, they just sleep there. Oahu can be marvelous.
Dec. 7
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I like my chances of 9 tricks in NT much more than 10 tricks in diamonds. Even though I can control the later and not the former.

I do not like the idea of Stayman and floating the 2 response. There are many hands that I would overcall 1NT but not open 1NT.
3316 / 3415 etc.
Dec. 7
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Good thing some poker pros are waking up. Professional poker is not as unhealthy as being a coal miner, but it is not a healthy lifestyle, either.

At least in bridge one can get up and move around every couple hands. Breaks are fewer and farther apart in tournaments. Cash games just keep running. Your breaks cost money. They banned smoking in poker rooms a long time ago. If if sitting really is the new smoking, poker players have still been sucking in a couple packs a day. Also, bridge is less time than poker sessions.

A lot of poker players pass away earlier than one would expect. Chip Reese, Danny Robinson. Some die because of the partying lifestyle: Stud Ungar and Johannes Strassman come to mind. There seems to me to be more cancer taking a toll among poker players at younger ages than one would expect. But that could be an anomaly, or observation not backed up by real stats.

I saw Joe Cada recently. Youngest main event champion just a few years ago. He is 12 years younger than Eric Greco. Cada looks a dozen years older than Eric right now.
Dec. 7
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ... 212 213 214 215
.

Bottom Home Top