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All comments by Stan Abrahams
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Trumpit
Aug. 9
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I did not want to comment, although this thread makes interesting reading, all the different viewpoints, and of course all the new words I had to look up.
However, When I read his articles, with their forewords, some of which I ignored, some I thought some were not too interesting, I never for one moment assumed that he was an expert in all the things he was writing about, but instead assumed, correctly, that he had obtained it from various people, or sources. I never thought too much about it. (It must be hard enough to write the bridge stuff, without changing the words that some expert on a subject has written, so that you are not copying them, word for word. Why in fact pretend that you could have written it better, just copy the original, and be done with it).

OK he never gave credit to those sources, a mistake, an error, but surely he realized we would understand that he was not an expert on everything, and it was just a bit of padding before he got on to the real stuff, the bridge.
Just my take on it, the bridge analysis and comments were what I wanted to read, and did so.
Aug. 4
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And this means that if you do lead an unsupported Ace, you are looking for partner to signal if they have the King. (and are still on lead). The opposite is obviously not true, you cannot lead an unsupported King.
July 20
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I will be giving some sessions soon, and I intend to start, as usual, by giving the following bidding sequence, the opponents are silent.
I open 1D, and the bidding continues, 1S, 2H, 2NT, 3H
I then ask how many Diamonds do I hold?
In a class of 30, only about 4 will say, 6+, the majority say 5.
We then go back to the beginners lessons on opening bids.(And a bit later, on reverses.)
Sometimes we get an epiphany.
Not a common sequence, but it highlights the way opening bids of a suit always promise a rebid, and how we should bid 5-5's.
June 15
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Wayne, are you suggesting that if someone asks, specifically, if something is a standard pre empt, that my first response should be, yes, but we play a Multi 2 Diamond bid?
Or is that not enough information, and do I then have to explain how our Multi 2 Diamond bid works as well, in case they are not up to date with that?
Or is there more information I need to tell them, none of it to do with what our 3 Diamond bid might look like? eg we have not played weak 2's for over 20 years?
April 24
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Last week at another club, I asked them to play it out, the TD was called, and said, both sides have to agree, or the TD is called. I give up.
But asking them to play it out gives them/me the same problems. Do they now see the problem, or do they panic?
April 12
Stan Abrahams edited this comment April 12
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Are you looking for your partner?
April 12
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I often play at a club which has a very mixed standard of player. I often play with some of them, (The club promises to give me a partner and 90% of the time I go without one), and the dreadful mistakes (some mine), are just part of my (very pleasant) night out.
My problem with this question we are asking is this:
If I say nothing, accepting the claim, I will never get to see if they were going to play the Queen, (I would guess 10% of the time).
On the other hand, as soon as I say anything, not just calling the Director, but a pleasant comment such as, “Whats your line?, or which 13 tricks are you taking?” this will immediately alert them to a possible problem.
And this can lead to another problem. Because they know who I am, they will think I can see a problem that they cannot. And they may find an alternative to the correct line, by panicking, and giving a rushed explanation.
For me this is a no win situation, I have no solution. I don't want to alert them, I don't want to panic them, but I am really interested to see if they get it right without claiming.
As stated, I don't have a solution.
April 12
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Taking the chance that this comment will not be laughed at.
Is it possible that West was thinking that it might be best to switch to a heart? came up with the wrong conclusion, and chose to continue diamonds, and that East was just lucky that West didn't hold the 9D.
March 3
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I play something similar, but have changed 2 things. Firstly, my 2NT opener is the unbalanced one, this is to stop opponents intervening, in case that is my 5 card suit.
Secondly the 2NT opener promises a 5 card suit EXCLUDING clubs. this allows a lousy hand to ask and pass, without playing in 3NT when the suit is clubs.
Feb. 12
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This is how I start the beginners lesson on the take out double.
There is a very old cartoon on the wall of our bridge club, it says,
“I double your one heart bid!”
I point it out to my beginners and tell them this.
Once upon a time a long time ago, this is how people bid. It was not a very good system for 2 reasons.
Firstly it came up very rarely.
Secondly, once the opponents knew there was a bad distribution in that suit, they looked for a better place to play, and quite often found it.
It became obvious that there was a far more useful meaning of that bid, and it came up far, far, more frequently.
I point to the cartoon and say, this is NOT what the bid means, REMEMBER this cartoon before you bid.
Jan. 29
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Very interesting hearing about the history of some BW contributors.
1970 appointed to set up our companies first computer. IBM system 3 RPG for punch cards. Full memory was 8192 bytes to be used to write ALL the programmes. The computer was the size of a small kitchen. I think the most basic electronic calculator has a lot more than that. Not sure though.
Where are we going to be in another 50 years ?
Replying to the heading though, regarding how large the new number is, I thought about the possible number of bridge hands, over 635 thousand million. That is a big number by any stretch of the imagination.
I always tell my beginners that we only have 15 words to describe all these hands, of course that is not really correct, but it sets the tone for discussing how bidding is a 2 way conversation.
Jan. 13
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David, I come here to enjoy, to learn, but tell me truthfully, is prosodist a word you use every day? Really? Even when I Google it, I am lost.
What a fantastic site Bridgewinners is. Every day something new! It beats all the trivia quiz shows on TV.
Dec. 27, 2017
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Ian, the cards have been played, anyone now picking up their cards and sorting them in any order, would that not draw immediate attention?
But clearly the different comments here tell me that this rule was really made to stop people doing bad stuff. Nothing at all to do with the fact that they might be able to work out from the order of the cards what might have happened.
Rather sad, but I will just keep cutting them, as nobody I play against is that smart, I can tell from their results.
Many thanks to all of you for your feedback.
Dec. 16, 2017
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Ray, many thanks for your comments. I really don't know how to do that stuff, I just love coming on BW and reading what thinking people think. (and of course the humour, and I have learnt a few new words in the last year.)
Paul, I haven't thought that through, but perhaps you could go into more detail of why a singe cut could not, would not, disrupt a coded message.
Dec. 16, 2017
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Sartaj. So am I.
I was actually there, watching one hand. (but I have a sad feeling after all these years). What sort of legacy are we leaving behind?
Dec. 16, 2017
Stan Abrahams edited this comment Dec. 16, 2017
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How can you possibly know the contract, if it was the correct one or not, if you were playing it, defending it, or dummy? Once in a blue moon, perhaps. (I saw one in Glasgow about 70 years ago, no one believed me until forest fires in Canada were reported). Whatever.
If your quote is correct, Law 7C does not say, THOROUGHLY. You don't even know as you pick up your cards whether you were playing or defending.
Don't even experts have enough on their minds when dummy goes down,without memorising the order of the cards they just picked up, without knowing if the cards were cut, shuffled, or anything else.

You pick up AKQxx, xxx, Axx, Ax, and bid to 4S.
Dummy goes down with JTxxx,AQxx,JT9, x. If you are an expert, you should be able to work out that this contract is 100% on any lead.If you are not an expert you may only make about 90% of the time.

What on earth is going through your mind about the order of the cards you picked up, or if you even received the same lead.
I don't often write anything on BW, (after all its on the internet and anyone in the world can read it), I am not that good, although I used to be quite good, but never an expert.
But this is a serious thing for me, what were they thinking about when they made this rule? Everyone here knows, deep down, the answer, but they never use the C word.
All they had to write was “cut the cards before putting them back”.
Dec. 16, 2017
Stan Abrahams edited this comment Dec. 16, 2017
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You wouldn't want to put money on it, would you? Just cut the cards.
At my age it takes me all my time to arrange them in order, not mix the hearts and diamonds, count my points, and then plan how I intend to bid.
Tricks 2,4,5, perhaps they took a losing finesse? Where is the smiley face?
Dec. 15, 2017
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Why do you personally think that they introduced this rule? I have given my reason, because once upon a time someone somewhere thought, correctly, that they knew what had happened.
Do you really think at the local club that this could happen? “Tell him he's dreaming” !
Dec. 15, 2017
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1.Yes its a dopey rule.
2.The computer deals them randomly where I play.
3.Why do you think they are allowed to cut? You know the answer don't you, to stop them getting unlawful information, eg seeing the bottom card. (Or god forbid they have arranged the cards whilst shuffling)
4. No my dictionary says amongst many other definitions, “to change the order”. I think cutting the cards changes the order.
Dec. 15, 2017
Stan Abrahams edited this comment Dec. 15, 2017
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