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All comments by Brian Baresch
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I was watching a JEC match a while back when South had essentially the same hand as the OP; it may have been KJT98etc. and two stiffs. Anyway, *both* sides with that hand elected to defend.
Aug. 13
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A while back I read that the hands may be farther afield than Europe, since one objective is to make it nearly 0% that anyone who played in the first event will also play in the second.

This also means that the bidding systems commonly in use may differ drastically from those dominant in the US, so that e.g. a field that generally plays (spins wheel) Polish club may be more likely to bid the slam in the OP.
July 12
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Well put, Ray. I believe you've pointed out another example of the fundamental attribution error – assuming that a director denying a request to play up is lazy or stubborn, rather than using their professional judgment that granting the request would cause more problems than it's worth.
July 9
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There's a thing in logic called the Fundamental Attribution Error, where you assume that anything someone did that you don't like or understand comes from some character flaw in them. (I think of it as “they're trying to be me and doing it wrong.”)

In this thread, we're talking about people who are given a choice of trying to play well enough to defeat their peers, which is the reason they arrived at the venue in the first place, or to change course and have a truncated “learning experience.”

Most people seem to accept an underlying assumption that taking the “learning experience” is the more virtuous choice, and those who don't make that choice must be taught the error of their ways.

That's a load of crap. We – you — don't know what's going on in the players' decision process. It sounds to me like they all came to play in an event they had a chance to win. If we don't want people to come with that mindset, why do we have bracketed events in the first place? That's what they're FOR. To tell them, effectively, “The game is canceled, there's a lesson instead, YOU'RE WELCOME” will not produce the result some of you are assuming.

Why not just stop the condescension and accept that people have different ideas of fun, and that some aren't more noble just because they're ours.
July 7
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Top players already have to memorize a great deal of information regarding systems, distribution probabilities and so on. Adding vulnerability to the load does nobody any good.
June 17
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“Curious hand. Neither side can make 2x.”
June 7
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It would certainly be innovative.
June 3
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It's always noon somewhere.
May 28
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I love it when “the committee denied the appeal” gets turned into “the committee decided the result”.
May 16
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Amy, the men's events were awarding qualifying points for representing the US in international competition, and excluding women from the men's pairs effectively excluded them from playing for the US. A lawsuit in 1985 put the kibosh on that.
April 12
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Nice article, Amy. In the “drop the transfer” situation, I think “Chicken Texas” might work even with an unknown partner: 4 is hearts, 4 is spades, 4 is too risky to chance.
April 9
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I've always said companies should hire lazy people, because we, I mean they, are good at finding the most efficient way to get things done.
April 5
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me n+1
April 1
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Chess is also much more intense while playing – tournament games are 4-5 hours without a break from having to be on top form. A bridge session has frequent breaks and chances to clear the mind between hands. Not to mention the chance to be dummy every fourth hand or so. These differences may account for some or all of the variation in longevity.
March 24
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Really, a procedural penalty for a single failure to alert? What other thoughtcrimes should we think about penalizing?
March 18
Brian Baresch edited this comment March 18
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“The problem here is that the failure to alert resulted in MI.”

No.

It.

Didn't.

There is a huge difference between giving the opponents MI and simply misdescribing one's hand. Making a call that doesn't describe one's hand is not against the rules. Not alerting a call that's not alertable is not against the rules. Making a bad bid that turns out well is not a cause for adjustment.

Repeating an argument that has been refuted multiple times is the worst infraction here.
March 16
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What?
March 5
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People who've lived here for years don't use or even know about formulas. The standard practice is to mention the nearest cross street. If that's missing, it's not the visitor's fault if they struggle to find it.
March 5
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JoAnn: That may be the most common reaction to being caught. “I thought I was getting legal drug A, but a person I trusted gave me banned drug B.” I've read that in fact the athlete thought he was getting drug C, which is similar to drug B but is new enough that tests don't catch it (and is thus quite expensive). But whoever was supplying him charged him for drug C but gave him drug B and pocketed the difference, and bang, you're caught.
March 3
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As they say, it may be bent but it's the only wheel in town.
March 2
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