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All comments by Matthew Weingarten
ATB
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We were playing a very standard 2/1 card. I'll exonerate myself and say that I was not East, or else this poll wouldn't exist.
April 7, 2016
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And to be fair to Lance (which no one should be considering how terrible of a person he was regarding the whole ordeal), he was competing in a sport where just about everyone was and still is doping. Lance was pretty much evening the field by doing what every other cyclist is doing. Bridge is different in that it's a much more clean sport. Cheating isn't evening the field, but rather getting ahead.
April 6, 2016
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We can have a separate poll to establish how much of an idiot I am if this poll hasn't done enough.
April 4, 2016
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They play a 15-17 NT, so you know the 1NT rebid is 11-14.
April 4, 2016
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That's what I ended up doing, thinking he'd be longer in than if I were to pick one. Good point about the lead, though. Maybe my pass would help him find the K of lead.
April 3, 2016
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I ended up pulling (and got an undeserving good score in the process thanks to some misdefense), but part of my thinking in doing that was my partner was certainly getting off to a bad lead against 1NT. He's not leading a red suit, so should I just take the risk that it's going down even with a black suit lead (which, to be fair, he did promise, and that makes it sound like I'm answering my own argument)? It just looks to be like his likely lead is helping them find a 7th trick.
April 3, 2016
Matthew Weingarten edited this comment April 3, 2016
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Partner's hand (FWIW): 98xx Kx Ax ATxxx
April 3, 2016
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I was concerned so many other people were taking it seriously. The first thing I thought when reading the message was that it was a good joke.
April 2, 2016
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First and foremost comes a partner. If I'm not playing with a regular partner, I'm not going to the tournament. So if I get asked, I immediately put the tournament into the “Under Consideration” category as long as I have the time.

Having a partner is 1a and then comes cost at 1b. I just graduated college and haven't begun my full-time job yet. I don't have the funds every other Bridge player has. Finding a hotel is usually reasonable because as a Junior, I have no standards. As long as I can sleep at night, shower in the morning, and have Wifi to check up on stuff throughout the day, I don't care if I'm sleeping on a bed, a couch, or a floor. Hotels are even more reasonable because I try to split with at least one other person, usually my partner. At my age, that's a big deal. Saving upwards of $50 a night adds up very quickly throughout the duration of a tournament.

The real killer is flights. Some major tournaments are just held in areas that are a pain to get to. Reno was the first NABC where I didn't have a direct flight. Maybe that's the fortune of living near a major airport (Tampa), but multiple legs add up to long days of travel and high costs. Not everyone is too worried about that, but when you're living on what you made during your last summer internship and the occasional game you direct at the local club, it becomes more of a hassle.

Another big factor is projected attendance. I'm not going out of my way to a tournament if it's going to be a dud. I actually stopped going to some of the regionals in my own district for that reason, and those are the ones I have no problem driving to. A big crowd and big names are sellers for me.

I guess I also left out time, but that's because I'm currently in the period between school and a job where the only thing I have is time. That's not going to be the case in a few months. That's going to be a big factor too. Sure, I'd love to be playing Bridge, but I need to work towards the vacation days I can take off to actually go to big tournaments.

I was impressed by how much I wrote down for what I considered to be a simple question. I guess there's more that goes into me deciding to go to tournaments than I thought.
March 22, 2016
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As someone who has played with and against Sally multiple times, congrats and well-deserved!
March 21, 2016
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Thanks Robert. Now Ben won't have to gripe about our results the next few days because he already has a national title in the bag. Congrats!
March 15, 2016
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I've never been to Reno, but if they have Uber there, that's a definite possibility. Yes, not many people may be around at that hour of the morning, but you never know. And the hotels aren't that far from the airport, so the 24/7 cab service won't kill you if that's what it comes down to.
March 9, 2016
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I thought it was AJx of H in S? The only reason I ask is because my partner led a H against 3NT (don't ask me how they stopped there) to my Q and what I thought was the A.
March 1, 2016
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There actually were “NO Trump” hats for sale at a recent regional I was at. It was flat-out obvious that these hats were meant to be about the Donald and not about Bridge. Now, I personally believe Bridge and politics should not be mixed, just like I think politics and any work/educational activity should not be mixed. It just gets ugly. But, let's be honest here, and it's the only political comment I will ever make on BW: Donald Trump is a freaking joke. The fact that he is even being considered for the Republican nomination is a reflection of how stupid our country really is. That probably does not apply to Bridge players, so for that reason, I find the hats in good spirit. If the candidate was credible and not a reality TV star, I'd think otherwise.

This message is sponsored by Tom Brady 2016.
Feb. 22, 2016
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Down 1 in our game was 3.5 out of 8 MPs. I know this because I played 3S -1. 2Hx -2, which I contemplated, is an amazing score here. Tough game!
Feb. 10, 2016
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That I haven't heard of, but that kind of makes sense. How would you handle the possibility that partner could be making a three-card raise? As for my partner's distribution, you were right about him having 6C. He was 2-3-2-6.
Feb. 10, 2016
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Pass, depending on the strength of the opponent who is declarer, wouldn't be a bad option if you plan on leading a trump. Your partner has - xxx KJxxx KQTxx. The 3H declarer has AJxxx AKTx x AJx. 4D does make.
Feb. 10, 2016
Matthew Weingarten edited this comment Feb. 10, 2016
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I was sitting with David's hand yesterday at our Common Game. I ended up bidding 3S, although I contemplated 3NT and even passing as well. I wound up going down 1 and actually thought I had a good chance of making the contract on the T of D lead until I got the 5-1 trump split. Down 1 was around an average for E/W in our section. The winning bid would have been pass for 300.
Feb. 10, 2016
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Over 1H, you'd get a raise to 2H and that might go down, but it for sure goes down less than anything else you could be playing here. This hand was a disaster in terms of fits.
Feb. 10, 2016
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I agree with you, Ken. I actually made this poll in response to my partner yesterday, who held this hand and after the game said he didn't feel it was an opener.
Feb. 10, 2016
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