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All comments by Robb Gordon
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Pass by partner is certainly not forcing. Anything could be right but I think the two leading candidates are Pass and 5. Not double (no reason to think you are entitled to a plus score) and 5 (which is silly when partner already knows you have 4). In this situation I would much prefer my 9 card fit to my 8 card fit.
Dec. 27, 2019
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Tom, when partner leads face down, the dummy is not normally exposed until the questions are asked and answered.
Dec. 26, 2019
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Hmm - “Keep it simple” and “Kickback” don't seem to go together.
Dec. 25, 2019
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@Paul - no, because everybody takes 4th suit in these auctions with a grain of salt, particularly if 3 wouldn't have been forcing. Even if it HAD been alerted the question at that time was wrong. I would hope that a few PPs would convince experienced players that asking questions like this is unprofitable. But I guess I wouldn't force south to lead a trump but I would be tempted. @Alan - it is legal, in the “letter” of the Law, but it puts a lot of pressure on partner for no good reason. At best it is careless UI transmission, at worst deliberate.
Dec. 21, 2019
ATB
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I put it mostly on South because 4H might have done the trick. But I think even reaching 5 was pretty good.
Dec. 21, 2019
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My job would be somewhat easier if the hand NOT on lead would stop asking questions when not involved in the auction. It isn't so hard to wait. I agree that a diamond lead was normal but I would give an expert player a procedural penalty for asking the question if I was king!
Dec. 21, 2019
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I certainly prefer that to a direct 3!
Dec. 19, 2019
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I was wondering when that comment would come. I didn't have this hand, but it wouldn't be my style to overcall with 7 losers, a doubleton club and an unpassed hand on my left + vulnerable. Corrected number of losers)
Dec. 18, 2019
Robb Gordon edited this comment Dec. 19, 2019
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Buchanan did coin “silent majority”.
Dec. 12, 2019
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Deleted - no longer relevant
Dec. 12, 2019
Robb Gordon edited this comment Dec. 12, 2019
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It has never occurred to me to play for a revoke. But I often have played for a mistake(s). A revoke is a form of mistake. I can't imagine any moral objection to playing a hand out when you are in a bad spot and there definitely is no legal prohibition, Law 74 notwithstanding.
Dec. 12, 2019
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BTW Nick, Paul and I have a different style. Rather than call this an “obnoxious forum” I would have gone back to Safire and called it “an effete corps of impudent snobs”. :D
Dec. 12, 2019
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I’m afraid so Nick. You didn’t really think that hack could turn a phrase like that, did you? I did forgive Safire though. His “on language “ was one of the best columns in print journalism.
Dec. 12, 2019
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Paul Linxwiler certainly doesn't need me to defend him, but it seems that the flames about the “barking seals” comment miss the point.

Paul wasn't saying that every BW subscriber is a barking seal. He didn't say that anybody who says anything negative or criticizes ACBL is a barking seal.

He merely indicated that there were a few “nattering nabobs of negativism” (thank you William Safire) on BW who constantly latch on to anything critical said about ACBL, fair or not.

Let's get one thing straight. The ACBL is losing members - that's incontrovertible. We are not losing significant numbers of members because of our customer service. We are losing members because of our demographics.

To take another organization with similar demographics to which I belong - the American Philatelic Society has lost half its members since 1988. Just like the variety of alternative entertainment available to young prospective bridge players, collecting, in general, has declined, and stamp collecting in the US particularly since stamps in the US have become sticky labels with cartoon characters (and who sends letters anyway?).

As to criticism of the Bulletin, I have been around since Dick Frey was the editor and the magazine was digest size with half its space taken up with pictures of Regional winners. The magazine has to appeal to 160,000 sets of eyes with vastly varied bridge experience and ability. I defy anyone to try to do better. You can be pissed at Paul for his directness if you like, but if you want to criticize his work you need to explain yourself.

As to ACBL “policy” on employee public comments - here it is - “All communications with outside entities where provision or confirmation of facts, comments or financial information about the ACBL is requested (media, government officials, etc.) should be approved by the Executive Director. The Executive Director is the sole representative to the media for the ACBL. From time to time he/she may designate others as spokespersons.”

This is why we post as individuals, not as spokesmen for ACBL unless under the byline “ACBL Official” or otherwise specified. We are still citizens of a country with freedom of speech. We just can't make up policy statements or obviously, breach confidentiality.

Finally, I have been an ACBL member for 50 years, and a caddy before that. I've seen lots of change in bridge and in the ACBL. Of that 50 years I have only been an employee for 2 of them, and during my 48 non-employee years, as some old-timers will tell you, I have never been afraid of speaking truth to power, and that has not ceased. I believe that BridgeWinners provides an invaluable service to the bridge world (not just in the Americas) and I am grateful to the management of the site for providing it. Like me, others have a right to express their views, even if they are barking seals. But when they bark up the wrong tree we have the right to call them out.

If you've gotten to this point in my post, congratulations. You have proven that bridge players have a longer attention span than the community at large!
Dec. 12, 2019
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Well, color me confused. Mr. Farsoud has taken it upon himself to PUBLICLY accuse an ACBL employee of lying to him.

Yet he quotes an email that proposes a simple solution to his misunderstanding of what he was told in the first place:

“As of today, you may still receive your unrecorded points by paying a three-year membership as this change has not been implemented at this time. I suggest if you wish to pay a three-year membership to receive your unrecorded points at no charge, that you do so as soon as possible before the change can be implemented. You may renew online at https://my.acbl.org/membership/renewal.”

So my confusion is this - if Mr. Farsoud is so concerned about his masterpoints why doesn't he take the offer and pay the three years now? It seems like a more useful solution than publicly whining about his own misunderstanding - of something that I admit could have been worded better.

I would not bother to post publicly but I am personally offended by Mr. Farsoud's unjustified attack on an individual ACBL employee. This is NOT an official comment but I am

Robb Gordon
ACBL National Recorder
Dec. 11, 2019
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Great results!
Dec. 6, 2019
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Lyft was 25 plus tip (at night)
Nov. 29, 2019
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Do people really think 3 will end the auction?
Nov. 19, 2019
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to overcall, need a good hand (say 10+) or a good suit.
Nov. 19, 2019
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and holdings are both liabilities.
Nov. 12, 2019
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