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All comments by Joe Hertz
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South just had an overly optimistic picture of what North had.

Which bid was the flawed one? Can't tell.

4N's heart control could have been an ace, king or singleton, right? So north didn't misstate his holdings and South, upon hearing what they were, booked them for failure. So it's easy to assign blame, but at what point should it be assigned? Not sure.
Sept. 3
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Or this:

We normally play A, and you play X
But if you play X, we would play B.
But because we play B, now you'll play Y.
So now you want to play Y, so we'll play A…

Lather, rinse, repeat.

I believe there is a rule to determine who gets to make which decision first. I just don't know what it is.
Sept. 3
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The “Dangerfield Double” is an optional double that encourages P to pass it based on how little respect he has for the opponents.
Sept. 3
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Oh, I didn't say I *agreed* with them. I'm just trying to figure out why they think they were wronged and am legitimately curious what would have happened without the hand-by-hand evidence.
Sept. 2
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Your system has variations depending on what system the opponents play. This was a case of playing entirely different system depending on fixed game elements like vulnerability and dealer.

I'm pretty sure that needing two convention cards to play with one opponent in one event is crossing some line.
Sept. 2
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I'm pretty sure that, if you were to use the ACBL Card, and you resort to using the word “OR” in the “General Approach” box (ex: Precision or 2/1, depending on vulnerability"), you're probably guilty of the violating the CoC as described.
Sept. 2
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I suppose it was fortunate that there was video evidence.

What would have happened if it was determined that yes, the systemic agreement was illegal, but there was no way to determine when the illegality occurred?

Maybe that's the threat? That they got a sanction that no other pair *could* have gotten for the same offense, whether or not it was fair.
Sept. 2
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I had a blind partner when I first started, and when I was dummy and and had a void in my hand, I'd put the cards down and tell him, “The hearts you can see for yourself…”
Sept. 1
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Once the heart void in the north hand is exposed, that's criminal not to exploit. That's almost worth flunking South right there.

Want to argue that south should have been able to divine the heart void in north's hand himself before that? I won't argue, but my uncertainty about that is why I only gave south a D.

I also wouldn't argue if someone that means we need an F as well as a rating even worse, because a borderline failure is still a failure.
Sept. 1
Joe Hertz edited this comment Sept. 1
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And since they used a proxy to hide their identity, that's another layer of red tape to fight. First you have to compel the proxy company to spill who the squatter is even before you can try to go after them.
Aug. 31
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As an aside, if you play non-promissory stayman, what are the standard follow ups after this auction

1n - (p) - 2 - (2)
?

What do most use the double and pass to show?
Aug. 27
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MP just described my card.

At one point I added my own addition to the 1N-2 agreement because I was playing in a Flight-C NAP Qualifier and didn't trust my opponents to bid 1NT with 5332 shape with a major and get lucky enough to fix us on that hand. I didn't want to concede the 3NT vs 4M when the major contract was better. Gadget is still on the card, but I've never ever had it come up, hence it's name, “NUTS” for “NEVER USE THIS S**T”.

Say responder has the balanced invite without the major hand.

1N-2 (15-17) (Clubs or a balanced invite)
3 -3 (I want to go to 3NT if you have the balanced invite) (NUTS)

3 == I had the invite, but you didn't happen to bid 1NT with a 5 card major did you? If so, bid it now or sign off in 3N.

The massive problem with this agreement is not only are you likely to get to the same 3NT contract you were getting to anyway, but now you've told the opps where all the majors are…or more importantly are not (at most 3 in either, opposite at most 4 in either).

So the opp on lead will always choose really wisely, because you've just told him about his P's holding in the majors. You can't do this if that could be a problem in 3NT.

Note that while I've not used it myself, at least one person I've told about it has used it against me.
Aug. 26
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 26
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Harry Lampert's book also taught Strong 2 openings, IIRC.

It's a great read for new players, and it was aided by the fact he was an awesome comic book artist (I want to say he eother created or co-created The Flash), but this book isn't exactly what anyone should consider to be a modern strategy reference guide.
Aug. 25
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My understanding is many high level pairs have situations where it's plain blackwood, which would make it not an either/or answer.
Aug. 25
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Amen, Don.

Most bridge players wind up getting to learn the laws by inadvertently violating them.

I recently gave a pre-game lecture at our unit's 199er section on the subject. The very first question was, “What are the two scariest words in bridge?” and more than one person said, “Director, Please”.

I got all sorts of questions after my 45 minutes was up so I did a follow-up the next week.

This curriculum is needed and badly. The point to give it to them is when they know enough to be able to benefit from playing in a game with a higher limit, but might be choosing to not do so because they feel like they don't know the rules well enough.

In the lesson, I discussed UI/AI/MI, and what to do when it happens, and why the directors do what they do.

The two big things I wanted to get through to them were:

1) Questions must be about your agreements, and what you know from those agreements. “How do you take that bid?” and “What does that bid mean?” should be parsed as “What are your relevant agreements about that bid?”

And

2) If you haven't talked about it, you must answer “Undiscussed”. Whatever you do, don't speculate.

As I suspected, none of them knew this when I started.

If people are interested, I'm happy to provide a link to my write-up, but I borrowed a lot of it from here:

http://www.northerncoloradobridge.com/archives/playerscorner/BridgeEthics.htm
Aug. 24
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 24
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+ 1 Zillion
Aug. 23
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I am, although I wasn't sure what to call it these days (We called our version “Fantunes Castrato” because, to be ACBL legal at the time, we had to rip out the 1444 shaped 1NT opener agreement. After the big news broke about the Fantoni and Nunes “novel leading agreements on defense”, we still kept the name. I claimed it was due to a case of wishful thinking).

In the example. we had pre-alerted the transfers to the 1 opening as required in ACBL-Land for mid-chart events at the time (which this was). When we found ourselves in a more restrictive General Chart event, we simply made the 2 opener cover 10-14 point hands, as 15+ 1 openers required no pre-alerting to their follow ups.
Aug. 23
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 23
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Or I'm being “too sensitive”. Or 2 of 3 might be true. Or all 3.

The problem is that subjectivity is subjective and the first hand didn't get a ZT, that second one sure wouldn't have.
Aug. 21
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I've actually found very little of that. Or at least I haven't noticed it when people do it, and have blithely asked other questions that the answers to will tell me what I need to know.

Closest I've found I think was (again, many years ago) someone who tried to make me think my question was ridiculous. The one level overcall box wasn't filled in so I didn't know when they'd begin to double first. When I tried to find out I got told “It's just basic bridge”.

Maybe the questions I ask are just too simple or now I know what answers aren't acceptable (like the guy who tried to pre-alert that their preempts were “SOOO undisciplined, even we don't know what they mean”).
Aug. 21
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Ed, I humbly suggest you've got the cause and effect backwards.

The ACBL doesn't even try to run sanctioned ACBL events at a GenCon. I'd jump at the chance to have the ACBL subsidize my GenCon membership in exchange for help running the games and teaching the subject. I'm sure I wouldn't be alone.

There are young gamers out there. Tons of them. Go to where they are or this game will wither on the vine without them having ever been exposed to it.
Aug. 20
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 20
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