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All comments by Robb Gordon
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Good article.
Dec. 21, 2015
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I am guessing that this was the “threat” - “But if you want to continue to destroy what must have been a hard-earned reputation as an affable and reasonable person, keep on posting.”

Indeed I see this as a “hot stove” caution, not a threat. Whether it is true or not, it is not something Eugene intends to cause.
Dec. 18, 2015
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For somebody who has been accused (fairly) of having some socialist leanings, I am kind of a free market guy in most cases. I can see a case for somebody opening a business with the rule that nobody is allowed to say “beanbag” in his store. This opens up an opportunity for another guy (or woman, I am not discriminating) to open a store across the street with a sign that says all words welcome, “beanbag” included. So what I am saying (I am sure it is obvious) is that some people created a site “Bridgewinners.com” and decided to make some rules for the customers who chose to do business here. This leaves a perfect opportunity for somebody who thinks he has a better model, like no censorship for example, to create a competing website. Maybe he could call it bridgewinnersunplugged.com. But I ask that we stop interrupting conversation threads with objections to the conditions of contest here.
Dec. 17, 2015
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There seem to be 4 issues here -
1. The propriety of making accusations in a public forum. I was raised (in bridge) to think that this is a big no-no, but it seems to be accepted in the recent context, and perhaps with good reason.
2. The policy articulated by Bridge Winners concerning cheating allegations.
3. Your interpretation of this policy - for example this essay on “first-degree” and “second-degree” cheating.
4. Specific examples.

I was totally comfortable with the first three, but you lost me on #4.
““Pulling 2♠ was an act as horrible as murder.” I’m not accusing that player of being a murderer, but of taking an action that was as horrible as murder. Most people would disagree with my comparison, but I would also not be making a murder accusation.”

To me this is specious. My favorite example is when somebody doesn't like somebody and compares him to Hitler. Yes, they aren't saying he actually IS Hitler but…

Sorry, I think this is a distinction without a difference and I encourage you to reconsider.

As far as Mr. Fredin's post (or any other) I am willing to accept that you (and your staff) as proprietors of this site have the right to judge what should and should not be here. I am not implying anything about this particular post. I am just articulating a comment on the principle that you are trying to state.
Dec. 17, 2015
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Just a couple of comments -

- Ira said “A few years ago my wife played in the women's KO with 23 teams. She was in a 3 way with the eventual winners and another team which she beat well but lost to the winners and was out-they came down to 8 teams.”

That must be a LOT of years ago. NABC events haven't had 3-way matches with one survivor in at least 20 years. If it DID happen it was certainly outside of formats in the CofC.

- Ira makes many important points (I agree so they must be important).

There are often unintended consequences when we start messing with the schedules of NABC events. It used to be easier. Before 1987 AFAIK there were NEVER 2 NABC events in opposition except the Reisinger/NA Swiss (The NA Swiss started in the mid–70s) and Mens-Open/Womens.

Now we have so many it is a nightmare.

I totally agree that we ought to schedule events so that they don't (with the exception of extended KO) cause a contestant to lose 2 other NABC events. Two-Day events starting the second day of three-day events is an example. Perhaps they could start with the Platinum Pairs/IMP Pairs.

- An acquaintance approached me several years ago after he had returned from a Regional. He was hopping mad. He played in a morning KO and there were only two brackets and he made the top bracket. He was outraged that he had to play against “pros”. What is this world coming to?!

This mentality, which is the norm is totally alien to me and I would guess to other players like Ira who started in the ‘60s and ’70s.

As Ira indicated, there were only a few 2 session+ events at Regionals. The only conflicts were mens/womens, and master/non-master events. There were really good players who had never won a regional or only won a few. Open pairs were huge, and it was exciting to qualify for the finals.

When they did have KOs, they were seeded so if you didn't have many points you got to play the top seed. That's right, you GOT (like a prize) to play the top seed. What a great position to be in! Nobody expected you to win but when you did, what excitement! But more frequently, the experience from playing against high caliber players, and the advice they might give you was invaluable.

Well, that ship has left the harbor and I feel sorry for newer players who are inculcated in the notion that playing against top players is a waste of time.

I mourn for our regionals.
Dec. 15, 2015
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I admit that I am confused here. If declarer indicated that she thought she had 10 spades combined she would NEVER finesse for the Q so I don't see how you would rule this way. It would simply be irrational to finesse when all followed to the first spade (yes I know she saw the second spade played on her left).
Dec. 9, 2015
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70D. Director’s Considerations
1. The Director shall not accept from claimer any
successful line of play not embraced in the original
clarification statement if there is an alternative
normal* line of play that would be less successful.

* For the purposes of Laws 70 and 71, “normal” includes play that
would be careless or inferior for the class of player involved.

As a director I would rule that not playing the AK would perhaps be careless but certainly not irrational in this instance.

Disputed claims often involve a degree of judgment on the part of the director. I am not convinced that is a bad thing. But if anybody wants to send a suggestion for either a revision or interpretation to the ACBL Laws Commission they are always welcome to do so.
Dec. 8, 2015
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If John is making a motion I would be happy to second!
Dec. 7, 2015
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Frankly the complaints about Denver in November surprise me. Does anybody remember November in Winnipeg? How about Buffalo AND Niagara Falls in March? Anybody for March in Montreal? Detroit (my hometown) in March? Oy.
Dec. 5, 2015
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I am not sure “logical” and “weird” are mutually exclusive. In this case however I think your idea is logical and not weird.
Dec. 4, 2015
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I vividly remember standing in line for a taxi at the New Orleans NABC in November 2003 between sessions. It was pouring and the doorman had to go out onto Canal Street in the downpour to round up the taxi. My turn came up and I gave the doorman $2, a bit embarrassed not to give more when he said in a booming voice “THANK YOU sir, you are the first one in your group to give a tip”. Really.
Dec. 4, 2015
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The whole subject makes me nauseous … er I mean nauseated.
Nov. 20, 2015
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I don't think I ever played against Mary Jane but I served on several appeals committees at Nationals. She was always a voice of wisdom and moderation.
Nov. 6, 2015
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I will never forget that when Zeke came back to bridge in the '70s he played with me even though I was a relative beginner. Happy birthday to a great player and a great gentleman!
Nov. 4, 2015
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Sidney Lazard was, in addition to being a GREAT player, one of the classiest people to ever play the game. His ethics were beyond reproach and he was a real gentleman.
Nov. 3, 2015
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Jeff Meckstroth donning a dress would terrorize a lot more than the women's pairs. I am terrorized just visualizing it. :)

Seriously, isn't time to just eliminate these gender specific events? Why is this even an issue.

I have to admit I have a personal fondness for mixed events but I would gladly sacrifice them to bring our sport into the 21st Century.
Oct. 31, 2015
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Thank you for this valuable and sensitive insight. I am sure it would help many club directors. I would love for you to send it to the ACBL Bulletin.
Oct. 23, 2015
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Although I do not agree with Joanna, I respect her integrity and believe she is a valuable member of the BW community. I certainly hope that should would not leave because of this.
Oct. 20, 2015
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Sounds like material for a Frank Vine article. Too bad he is no longer with us.
Oct. 20, 2015
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This is an important subject in the US because there has been some discussion (now that we have multiple NABC+ events happening simultaneously or overlapping) of allowing drop-ins. One complication in ACBL-land is that we have carryovers in qualifying pairs events. In the WBF all qualifiers start at zero.

But my personal experience with this was in 2010 when I didn't have a lot of time so I went to Philadelphia for the IMP pairs. We had a pretty good score (don't remember but we were well plus) but we didn't qualify because so many pairs were dropping in (from the open pairs!) that fewer than 25% of the original contestants qualified. That just isn't right.
Oct. 19, 2015
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