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All comments by Ellen Caitlin Pomer
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I am learning kickback and see all the complexities in the discussions; however this article is very useful, easy to follow. Thanks, John
Oct. 6, 2014
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I may fall asleep going through the new WBF site. The pale green and white are sleepy, sorry Kitty. It seems to reflect the average age of the ACBL, rather than the exciting worldwide youth movement. Was a focus group used and is it too late for such?
Feb. 23, 2013
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Kudos to Kitty and all involved in Bridgewinners. The fact that it needed a ‘renovation’ speaks to the amazing growth of BW over a relatively short time given the excellent content. Bravo to all!
Feb. 23, 2013
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Jenny, thank you for doing this question/answer column, yet another example of your commitment to give to this game. I've read every line you have written here and you brought tears to my eyes as you described your mom.
I have taught novices online for 17 tears or so. When I started few used cyberspace as a teaching medium. Now it seems everyone and his/her grandmother offer online lessons. There is talk, from time to time, about accreditation for online teachers. Any thoughts about this (and Gavin gets a pass!)? Are there accreditation programs in Sweden of what sort? Again thank you!
Sept. 24, 2012
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This same dopamine receptor D4 gene (DRD4) is associated with financial risks taken specifically by men (an older article–
http://www.fas.harvard.edu/~ped/publications/PEDpublications/2009/DreberEVOLHUMBEHAV2009.pdf and not surprisingly, it is key receptor as a predictor for gambling and cocaine abuse. (Again an outdated article: http://www.fas.harvard.edu/~ped/publications/PEDpublications/2009/DreberEVOLHUMBEHAV2009.pdf )

As research in addictionology demonstrate today, obviously all–risk-taking behaviors (including addiction to gambling of any sort)-give a ‘rush’ which more men thrive on than women.Can one relate this to ‘volatile bidding?’ However, elevated dopamine receptor D4 gene (DRD4) does not mean one will act out on these instincts. Successful World Class pairs would not be successful if they did not take risks; however there are calculated risks and volatile risks.

Aug. 19, 2011
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Re: Cell Phone Rule: I, too, have a special needs child and the thought of not being available to her is very disturbing to me.
Aug. 6, 2011
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As someone who lives in Toronto–and close enough to either hotel that I wouldn't need to book a room–I was especially embarrassed by the cost of rooms. I know that most of those at the Royal York are ridiculously small and I was told directly by an employee of the hotel that other smaller groups had negotiated much lower rates for rooms given tourism has taken a big loss here due to our dollar being higher than that of the U.S. plus our ridiculously high taxes.

Jan, I agree re: earlier play times but regardless of East or West Coast. While I was unable to actually play due to a back injury, I did come down for short times to visit friends. However there is NO WAY I would play at 10:00am. I am NOT a morning person.

As far as split hotels, unfortunately there is no way one hotel here that can accommodate all the required playing rooms.

At the same time, I spoke with many players particularly from overseas who loved the tournament and our wonderful city. And bravo to our volunteers, especially those who made the youth event so wonderful.

Aug. 5, 2011
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Bravo Berkowitz!
July 25, 2011
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Gavin's question remains: “What's the big deal about one paycheck that would make such a difference in your life?” It is a BIG DEAL to support one's family, as in Gavin's case. No doubt and let's not be naive, it's also the U.S. platform to be a ‘star’ player. Politics of CBF versus US aside, NOTHING–money nor recognition (nor lack of State taxes in certain parts of the U.S) would see me leave Canada for the Tea Party, lack of universal health care, corrupt banks (everyone should see the video ‘Inside Job’) versus the civility & camaraderie of Canada, for the paycheck. As Fred Gitelman has said many times, it was the experts in Toronto who took him under their wings and really taught him this game. I am very proud to be a Canadian and while the bridge ‘brain drain’ to the U.S. will continue, I don't envy their paychecks or ‘stardom’. Sorry, my American friends, I am NOT anti-America; rather, the differences are real.
May 29, 2011
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In spite of Bridgwinners going down at a highly ‘libidinal’ point of tension (bridge can be sexy??), it's also a testimony to this site's increasing popularity! So bravo to all involved with Bridgewinners. Of course congratulations to all who competed, with special accolades to Woolsey & Stuart! And what a great tribute to Weinstein for his comment: “Congrats to Fred and Kit! You guys played terrific and if I got to handpick a pair to lose to, you guys would be the pair.” That is great sportsmanship. Steve, and you model that for other players!
May 9, 2011
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Are we back at this Gavin?!! It was a dark day in bridge history.
May 6, 2011
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Yes, go to www.larryco.com as it is a GREAT website with articles I trust you will find to be terrific. I also love Larry's CDs as he does the ‘over the shoulder’ and explains all so well. (And Larry did NOT pay me to write this!!)

When I really started playing a lot, I loaded up on system (2/1) and a ton of conventions which I found easy to remember. I lost a lot of time as I had to go back and learn solid bidding, declarer and defensive play. That is probably why I LOVE teaching novices as founder of Bridge Forum (www.bridge-forum.com)and write books on the fundamentals, the next book with Gavin Wolpert.

But during my re-training for my own game, I always had (and continue to have) mentors. Some I pay, some won't take money. I choose carefully, watching his/her game, chatting, having a free assessment. I expect that I will always have mentors to keep my game continually improving.
Nov. 15, 2010
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As someone who has commentated for BBO many times, I can testify to the fact that at times we get new operators who skip many hands because they missed what happened. As well, raising the issue of Fred and Brad is not only tangential but offensive. I have known Fred for years and there is no analogy between what happened in Geneva. I choose to believe that outcome would have been very different if the current Diamond team were in the same situation as the German team was in Geneva.

I hear that we should ‘Blame The Law!’, but the ‘manifestly incorrect’ law would never have been implemented if the German team had not gone to committee but instead, stepped down with grace.
Sept. 27, 2010
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When BOTH teams know a mistake had been made in the scoring, it should never have go to committee. And when committee makes a ‘manifestly’ ludicrous ruling, this went/goes beyond this awful situation. Aspiring bridge players, certainly here in Canada, look up to and aspire to be like the World Class players at such events; we also trust that rulings made will be fair. The combination of the opposing team's position, which put them in a very black place for many, along with the ruling, makes a mockery of ‘active ethics’.
Sept. 25, 2010
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I love reading analyses that both challenge and teach the reader!
Ellen Caitlin Pomer
Sept. 21, 2010
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Your analyses are written in such a way that you both challenge and teach your readers, or at least teach me:) Well appreciated.
Ellen Caitlin Pomer
Sept. 21, 2010
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This very topic came up as I was volunteer teaching on BBO. It's such a confusing topic for intermediates (let alone more advanced players) and this article, one of my favourites by you, sets things straight.
Sept. 17, 2010
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Gavin
Thanks for responding to my question re:xyNT. I knoe Swedish players who use it with weak notrumop. How would that look?
July 13, 2010
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