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All comments by Sabrina Miles
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I feel your pain. As a player who learned to play on-line, I find myself more often than I should asking for a when I really mean the top (isn't it obvious!) I wish my p would ask which .! But at least it has proven a learning experience for me. For those who learned to play in F2F tourneys, I do not see this mistake as often.
April 17, 2017
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As one who, with less than 1500 MP, chose to play in the open division, I find it hard to swallow that those with 5000+ MP need protection because of master point inflation. What I do see is that those folks perceive that the can easily win in Flight A and would rather not compete in the Open/Championship division. I have no sympathy. Leadership starts at the top. And if those at the top won't lead, they should get out of the way, not block the way of those up and coming players.
April 17, 2017
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@Peg, I am confused by your cost argument about additional teams being added based on participation. You state: “If we can't get decent funds for 1 team in each bracket - how are we going to begin to achieve it for 2 teams?” It is my understanding that as presently construed that the districts provide the funds, if any, for each of the teams it sends to the Nationals. As you have repeatedly said, your district, for a variety of reasons, does not have the wherewithal to attract additional participation. Thus, it is very unlikely that your district would be sending additional participants to the nationals for the GNT and, thus, would not need to concern itself with funds for a second team. Why then are you concerned about how other districts will fund their additional teams?

While I am loathe to be ungenerous, it seems to me that your argument boils down to: we can't do better (in getting additional participation) and we don't want to be disadvantaged by having to play against other districts extra teams.

The objective here, I thought, was to increase the GNT participation. Why not give those Districts who have the wherewithal to increase participation the opportunity to do so by being able to send additional team(s) to the National?
April 17, 2017
Sabrina Miles edited this comment April 17, 2017
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The addition of extra teams from those districts that have sufficient participation to warrant such supplementation does not detract from the concept of every district be represented. What it does do is marginally level the playing field so that those with 1 team because of few entries in the district finals are not given an unfair advantage over those districts that had great participation when all are playing in a short randomized swiss for qualification to the KO round.

I would not advocate the elimination of district representation for those districts that did not meet minimum participants. Although I think there is more than sufficient reasons to hold each district accountable to a minimum standard, I sympathize with the hardships some districts have in attracting additional participation.
April 17, 2017
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Currently, the ACBL bestows Diamond Life Master status on those with 5,000 MP (with minimal pigment prerequisites). Less than 2% of the all ACBL members have over 5000 MP. If anybody does not need coddling and protection from the “big guys” its those with 5000+ MP (ok, we've already upped it to 6,000). For goodness sake, let's not raise it again! If we want folks to play up, lets start at the top….and have them play up!

And for folks who need protection and already have 6000 MP, perhaps another hobby might prove more fruitful.
April 17, 2017
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What an innovative concept! Pay tied to performance. Perhaps it might encourage a few less Midnight KO's and a bit more sleep and study.
April 16, 2017
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@Mike, I don't know how you are counting. I know that in 2016, District 25 had 11 teams competing in the Open/Championship Division of the GNT. On the final day, the field was winnowed down to 4 teams that competed in head-to-head knockouts to determine the eventual winner. If you made this mistake with respect to District 25, how many other districts did you merely look at the final day?
April 15, 2017
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From my perspective, to boost participation in the GNT it might be more effective to incentivize the masses rather than discourage the top players from participating. How do you encourage the masses to participate? I think Mark Aquino, D25 District Director, had the right idea. At the fall 2016 BOD meeting, he proposed that districts that achieved a minimum of eight teams in a flight be authorized to send a second team in that flight to the national finals. Aquino postulated, as most reasonable people would, that if folks believed there was a chance that their team might advance to the national level, they would be more likely to participate. Sadly, Aquino’s motion failed by the narrowest of margins, 12-12 with one District Director abstaining in the voting.

I understand that in some districts, because of individual costs to attend the district finals, geographical obstacles, and a dearth of players in a particular stratum it might be difficult to attract more participants. But for the districts where such barriers are not a bar to participation, should not the whole of ACBL encourage greater participation in those districts by providing the necessary incentives? Minimally, should not the districts be given the opportunity to determine if such a proposal would increase participation?
April 15, 2017
Sabrina Miles edited this comment April 15, 2017
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I think the term novice is a heck of a lot better than being referred to as a LOL player. Novice merely suggest a newer player; LOL connotes incompetent. Both terms seem to be bandied about quite regularly in bridge circles.
April 2, 2017
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I have no problem with the 2 bid, I think the bid reasonably describes the hand and is not necessarily game forcing. I don't agree that 3 establishes a GF. Perhaps W has only a random 6-7 count and is merely showing a preference. What choice, if any, does W have to show a bare minimum without game going values? Perhaps W could bid 4 over 3 to show the less than game going values and E could sign off there or chance 5? From my perspective, the GF was established once W cue bids 4 over the 3. It shows he has something to contribute.

In any event, after the 4 bid, W knows the pair has all the aces, why does not W then explore whether E has the K & Q of with a 4NT call rather than bid 5? If such a call had been made, the response based on E hand would be 6 – 3 keycards and an unbiddable void (which from his holdings W can safely assume is ) would provide the impetus for W to bid 7.

On the other hand, the bid of 5 by W only makes sense if he also holds the A. If E surmises this, then he also has the knowledge to take W's 6 bid to 7.
April 2, 2017
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At least it is a better prank than last years' all day outage. Of course this comes up on April 1, what better time?
April 1, 2017
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Great article Kit!

I must admit that I am confused. You set the article up as “Hamman's Rule.” You explain that Hamman's Rule states: “if there are possible calls and one of them is 3NT, then 3NT should be chosen. The rule tends to work very well vs. preempts. 3NT is probably the percentage action.” And then you choose for your action double. Now I would totally understand my partner going against our partnership agreement/understanding (we're new and dating) but I don't get why you go against Hamman's rule. Why do you? Is there something we (all of your followers) can learn from your departure?

What do you think about lebenshol in this auction?
March 1, 2017
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@Karen, wouldn't it be nice if the advertised price per night was the all in price, i.e., such price included all taxes and fees? That, would be truth in advertising.
Jan. 7, 2017
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Geez, thanks for the heads up. I noted recently that I did not remember the exact auction and had begun to make a note of it at the table. It was not for the purpose of a playing the hand, but for the purpose of discussing the bidding afterwards. Anyone can ask for a review of the bidding before the start of play. I guess that on-line play has me spoiled.
Dec. 23, 2016
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I often take notice when I see a pair with Bridgewinners convention cards. It is especially useful in areas that I don't often play (and thus don't know the players) – which I have been expanding. Foolishly or not, I give those with bridgewinners cc the benefit of the doubt. Actually, it was one of the key attractions, for me, to the cite.

BTW, while we can't change font size, we can be judicious in our use of capitalization on the cc…it make a world of difference.
Dec. 23, 2016
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I don't know what “scientist” say with respect to the difference between women's and men's brains. Thank goodness there are physiological differences.

I do know that prominent US “scientist” (from renown schools, I might add) said in 1925 that Negros (the term of the day) where scientifically inferior to whites and could not be depended upon in service in a future war (world war I had ended 7 years earlier). The findings were detailed and explicit; and would quickly be dismissed as nonsense by the majority (I hope) of modern folks. The Tuskegee Airman proved the study faulty….but many relied on it to advance their particular biases.

Thus, I am reluctant to give credence to a study that, from my perspective, is not scientifically sound.
Dec. 23, 2016
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1) What do you understand by the term ‘sexism’ in relation to Bridge?

I see sexism the same in most contexts: it’s stereotyping and/or discrimination based on gender. Interestingly enough, it has been my experience that women in bridge can be equally opportunity sexists when it comes to selecting a bridge partner or hiring a bridge pro.

2) Do you believe that sexism is a relevant and/or useful term in understanding the social dynamics between men and women in the game of Bridge? (please elaborate if possible)

The social dynamics of bridge players follow the norm: those with something to offer are generally pursued by those interested in the commodity. So is the term relevant? I think it’s equally relevant in bridge as it would be in the general discussion of any population.

3) What might you consider to be examples of sexism in Bridge? (please indicate if these are based on personal experiences)

At the partnership desk…a man with 1000 less MP gets selected as a partner before a woman with 1000+ MP. Men, and women, prefer men partners.


4) What might you consider to be examples of ‘unconscious bias’ in Bridge in relation to gender, and how are these different or the same as examples of sexism?

I am very aware of unconscious bias when it comes to race….I am not just beginning to understand what it means as it relates to gender…and thus, do not feel competent to speak on it.


5) Are there any changes that could be made in relation to equality between men and women in the game of Bridge?

Not that jumps outs at me. But then again, perhaps that is due to my newness at face-to-face bridge.


6) What might be the consequences (positive or negative) of raising awareness or addressing sexism in Bridge?

Men might wise up that some women aren’t really interested in them as people?

7) Is there anything further you wish to contribute to this subject?

Nope.

8) Please indicate which of the following apply to you:
Gender: Male / Female
Age group: Under 25 / 25-34 / 35-54 / 55+

Female….and a female does not answer queries regarding her age :)

Bridge Standard: social player / club player / tournament player (congresses, national events or leagues) / international (ie you have represented your country) / professional player

Tournament players

Nationality: please provide your country (or continent if you prefer)

USA
Dec. 22, 2016
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@ Bill re: numbers 2 an 3….are they analogous? Men agree to play with certain women because they want sex with them…and women marry “bridge experts” because they want to play? If so, it seems, to me, that women get the better of the deal. I do note, however, the demeaning comments of “some” men…I take it that they have not made it to the expert level :)
Dec. 22, 2016
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Does this mean that only team captains and those who surrender are subject to disciplinary penalties? Is that the message that ACBL wants to send? Is everyone else presumed to be ignorant, regardless of: years in tournament action; # of MP; years of ACBL membership? I am confused by the decision….but perhaps, that's the way the ACBL wanted the average member to be. I am perplexed that it seems that there is an appeal of one of the team member's discipline/lack of discipline.

I am glad that this whole thing has not been swept under the rug. But, I think the response is as close to sweeping the matter under the rug as it could possibly be.
Dec. 14, 2016
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@Sathya, the ACBL has not yet opened the hotels for Toronto, but several condos that I attempted to rent were already booked for the full 11 days of the tourney. Some folks apparently do plan ahead; unless Toronto has something else going on this summer.
Dec. 13, 2016
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