Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Matthew Weingarten
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I attempted to start a Bridge club when I started college two years ago. First off, making a student organization is no walk in the park. You must fill out a bunch of forms and attend a good number of informational meetings.

Nonetheless, I was committed, because some friends and I had been discussing the creation of a Bridge club since we graduated high school. After doing all of the organizational work, it was time to advertise. I agree with Christian in that posters get you nowhere with the current generation of students. People are so immersed in their cellphones that they don't look up and read the multitude of posters that are around campus. We made posters, but I also made a Facebook group and posted about it in almost every college Facebook group that I was a member of. That was definitely more successful.

Agreeing with Christian again, make sure that one of the points of emphasis is the scholarships won from the collegiate bowl. Nothing attracts students more than the thought of lowering their ridiculous tuition costs.

Finally, it was time to start meeting. We met once a week on Tuesdays, and I had willing volunteers from a local Bridge club join us and teach the lesson for the week. While they were doing that, I would create a review document to send out to everyone once the meeting was over. After the lesson, we'd play some hands, and they'd usually relate to the lesson in some way. It probably lasted around two hours a week.

I also made sure that the Bridge club was ACBL-approved. That way, we could hold games for Masterpoints. Whenever we decided to hold a game, I made sure to tell everyone well in advance, since it would run longer. I also reached out to the local Bridge club and invited their players to join us so that we could have more tables.

While all of this sounded like it'd work (or at least it did to me at the time), the Bridge club was not successful. On a non-game week, we never had more than 2.5 tables, and two or three of those people were from the local Bridge club and were giving the lesson. I didn't even bother renewing the club for the following year, since some of the students were graduating and almost all of the students who regularly came were friends of mine from high school, and not people who heard of us through Facebook.

I don't know what it is about the current generation of students. Maybe it's because they're so busy with classes and whatnot that they don't have the time to take up something that takes a good amount of time to learn. Maybe it's a result of the stigma that Bridge is a game for old people. All in all, I don't get it (I learned how to play Bridge when I was 13), so it was hard to make any progress.
Sept. 11, 2014
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Congrats to you as well, Josh. You had some big news of your own today.
Aug. 2, 2014
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As a competitor in the trials in Atlanta, I just want to say how proud I am of being a part of a program this dedicated to teaching Juniors Bridge on the highest level. Not many are fortunate to have what we have access to. The Rosenbergs, Barry Goren, and all the mentors have been nothing but fabulous in their support. Unfortunately, I won't be a part of the teams going to Istanbul in a few weeks, but the experience I had competing was still wonderful. Best of luck to our teams:

U26 USA1: Zach Grossack - Adam Grossack, Adam Kaplan - Zach Brescoll, Marius Agica - Owen Lien

U26 USA2: Will Zhu - Edmund Wu, Erli Zhou - Jimmy Wang, Alex Hudson - Greg Herman

U21 USA1: Kevin Rosenberg - Ben Kristensen, Chris Huber - Oren Kriegel, Cole Spencer - Nolan Chang

U21 USA2: Arjun Dhir - Christian Jolly, Allison Hunt - Burke Snowden, David Soukup - Hakan Berk

Rona Cup: Isha Thapa - Julie Arbit, Becca Wernis - Marianna Linz, Asya Ladyzhensky - Anam Tebha
Aug. 2, 2014
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When I made that comment earlier in the day, it was just to get a point across, and not to stereotype fraternities (although, to be fair, I'm not that far off if you look at some of their photos). The main point of the comment was to shoot down some rude and idiotic things said by he who shall not be named. There are some great fraternities out there that provide a great network in the transition between college and the workforce, and I'm not denying that.
July 29, 2014
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They'd have my support in a heartbeat.
July 29, 2014
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Disingenuous - pretending that one knows less about something than one really does

I'm pretty sure Josh knows more about what it takes to play on the highest level than anyone who has commented in this thread so far, minus Gavin, who he'd tie with in that regard. Any accusations to the contrary are ludicrous and warrant a mental health examination.
July 29, 2014
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When millions of dollars are involved, I'm pretty sure anyone in their right mind would be dressed for the occasion. What I meant in my earlier comment is that for a 9-5 job in the computer industry, Gavin and crew are dressed more than acceptably.
July 29, 2014
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What does me being a young man (I still consider myself a kid, and so does everyone I know) have to do with anything I've said? I might be 20, but I still think I've made my share of good points in this thread so far. If my immaturity is showing, please enlighten me.
July 29, 2014
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I won't disagree with you there. Attire is certainly important when trying to get a job. Nonetheless, results are important too.

If my employees are making sales go through the roof, I would be more than pleased so long as they were clothed. In fact, Gavin and co. would be above par if they were going into the computer programming industry.
July 29, 2014
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Kevin Rosenberg is representing USA1 for the U-21 division in the Junior world championships in Istanbul in a few weeks. I competed against his team for that spot, and they thoroughly whipped my team and I. Although he still lives in his parent's shadows, Kevin is quite the accomplished player in his own right, and everyone is going to learn that firsthand come August.
July 29, 2014
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Nat - what's wrong with their attitude? This picture was snapped after they won a national event. Are they not allowed to be happy and enjoying each other's company? Maybe the picture in question isn't as formal as some of the other ones we've seen, but I still see nothing wrong with it.

I am highly in favor of your agenda to control Bridge player's clothing and poses. Because after all, the last man who tried to control what everyone looked like, clothing-wise and pose-wise, was a great Samaritan.
July 29, 2014
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Mark Twain is one of the greatest authors of all-time,but I disagree with him on this one. Naked people have quite the influence on our society nowadays, just look at the adult entertainment industry.
July 29, 2014
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Randy, you don't think they'll have uniforms if they get sponsored? They're not that expensive, and it's the best way to represent the U.S. I'm pretty sure they will have uniforms if they have the opportunity to go.

Nonetheless, I still think their Bridge game is a little more important than the clothes they wear, but it is a close call. I do spend an awful lot of time planning my outfit for the next day.
July 29, 2014
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As a student at one of the largest public schools in the country (which also manages to field one of the crappiest football teams), I can tell you that Gavin and co. look nothing like frat boys, which is great because the former is full of studs, while the latter is full of self-entitled (you fill in the blank). Frat boys exclusively wear Ralph Lauren polos and khaki-style shorts (unfortunately, John Hurd is fitting my description in this photo so far), and they are armed with a Bud Light or Natty Lite in their hand. If that's not a fair analysis, feel free to ask any of my Junior friends attending college in the U.S., and I can almost guarantee they will agree with me.

As for dressing more formally, why? Obviously, they are going to dress nicer when they are wearing their uniforms, so I don't think they are offending anyone by dressing quite normally for a national event when it is over 100 degrees outside. But still, half these guys aren't in their mid-30's yet. By Bridge standards, they're young adults for another 20 years, so there's no need to be so harsh on such a trivial matter.

Clothes mean nothing. Let the results that these guys produce (which, if you haven't noticed, are pretty damn good) speak for themselves. I'm sorry for this rant, but as a lurker on this site, some of the bilge water that you've spewed over the past few weeks, whether it be about blacking out a Vugraph match that seemed to be out of reach at halftime or the Buffett Cup cancellation, have infuriated me because it's not just wrong, but also quite rude to everyone who puts a tireless amount of effort into the game we love.
July 29, 2014
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Zach Grossack was a member of the U21 USA2 team that won silvers in China two summers ago, and has won and placed in various national events. He is very impressive for someone of his age.

Julie Arbit won NAPs with Jordan Kaye in Flight C last year, right? I remember there was a scoring issue but I forgot who came out on top.

Sam Amer is my partner in the USBF training program right now, and I wish him nothing but the best of luck as he tries to conquer Flight B with his father.
July 15, 2014
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Hi Ben,

As a fellow Junior, here's what I can say about my experience at NABCs:

1. There's games almost around the clock: Us Juniors like to play. There's sessions starting from early morning going until the end of the night. And after that, you can usually find some people playing just for fun. You will not be lacking Bridge while in Vegas.

2. Don't be afraid to talk to anyone: You are going to run into almost every famous Bridge player at one time or another during the tournament. Don't be shy. Introduce yourself and have a conversation. They are, for the most part, very kind, and especially appreciative of Juniors.

3. Enjoy the scenery: Don't stay locked in the hotel all day and night playing cards. Go out and enjoy the city with your new friends. It's Vegas, so that truly makes it once in a lifetime.

Enjoy!
July 15, 2014
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District 6's B team has Hakan Berk in place of David Soukup, I think. They're almost interchangeable, as the two will be playing together next month when they represent the U21 USA 2 squad in Istanbul for the Junior world championships.

Burke Snowden, who is on the District 17 B team, will also be on that team. He has multiple titles in the Youth NABC, and was a member of the U21 USA2 squad that played in China two years ago, just like Hakan and David.

Nolan Chang will be on the U21 USA1 team, and won the GNTs for Flight C last year. He'll be a favorite to repeat, although the District 21 team provides some sharp opposition in Kendrick Chow and Samuel Kuang, two strong Juniors.
July 15, 2014
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They don't show ranks ahead of you during the game. You see your running percentage on that board and then your rank at the end of the session once your boards are in.
July 18, 2013
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100% agreed. No point in wasting 10 minutes when it carried out in better analysis later.
July 18, 2013
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I completely agree. All the clubs where I play regularly use Bridgewebs to post the results, so I always look at the boards there to see what went right, what went wrong, and if there any wrong scores that we didn't originally catch. Tempers are cooled after time too.
July 18, 2013
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