How to Lose at Chess. Part 3

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Hello dear friends. I am back from vacation and happy to talk more about my two favorite subjects: chess and failure. Now, that we covered basics we get to more advanced stuff. New Rule!

Rule 8. Keep bad pieces

The life is not easy. Sometimes you need to exchange your pieces for some equivalent material. As my old friend used to say, “between Bishop and Knight I choose 3 rubles”. But seriously, exchange is necessary part of the game. And if you want to lose, keep bad pieces. You can easily spot them: bishops who are stuck behind loads of paperwork, knight who is comfortably sitting in the corner office away from the action. Those are your sure bets for comfortable loss. If inexplicably you end up with a good pieces, turn them into bad once: place you active rook behind triple pawns and charge it with support the front runner, place your pawns, those little bureaucrats, on the squares of the same color as you bishop; they will make sure that this runner will not be go here or there. That finesse will not go unpunished and, once again, you got a doughnut hole for you hard work. Way to go!

See you soon for new Rules.

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How to Lose at Chess. Part 2

Greetings, chess enthusiasts, both adept and inept! We continue our adventure on the road to failure. Today we are moving on to

Rule 5. Let your pieces go!

You need to remember that chessmen are not people. They are vermin that has no right to walk the chessboard. They are the reason that keeps you away from your armchair in front of a big screen TV. No mercy! It normally takes to let go of a few useless pawns and may be a knight without proper compensation to ruin your chances for success. Salute! You have done it again.

Rule 6. “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” ― Benjamin Franklin!

The dude from the painting knew what he was talking about. The preparation is for suckers who want to achieve something. We, on contrary, need not spend hours and hours of hard work learning openings and preparing for new adversary. Come to the game with clean hair and empty brain. Play Pork Chop OpeningWhen your opponent announces in a few moves “Well done!”, do take it as a compliment.

Rule 7. Time is on your side!

Do you remember the times when the game of chess for 16 hours without an end? If you do, you must be really old. Welcome to the modern time of fast shoes. You have got your timelines and stay focused… Well, in our case unfocused. Daydreaming is essential. Let your mind wander. Think of a beach, palm trees, seagulls and a glass of something cold and delightful in your hand… “Sir, your time is up!” Well, that was time well spent. Now your way is open for new and exciting failures.

See you soon for new Rules.

How to Lose at Chess

Do you play Chess? No?! No worries! You are already half-way there, as today I will be talking about how to lose at Chess!

Rule 1. Never learn rules!

This is true and tried. All you need to do is show up. Not showing up works just as well but is much less fun. Just imaging, sitting down at the board, enthusiastically greeting your opponent and asking him if he could advice you how the horsey thing moves. Be careful, however not to get into heated conversation with your opponent about pawns being able to take backwards as later may go into cardiac arrest and you will win by default. Otherwise, that is the easy road to failure, as even your slightest advances will be crashed almost instantaneously.

Rule 2. Pieces Development

If you were unfortunate to learn how to play, you cannot fake it. So, there are other ways. Do rely on moving your most senior pieces out early, while keeping knights and bishops well behind. It is important to give your strong and powerful figures full exposure to the all ranks of the enemy lines without necessary support from those who normally do all the leg work (as well as arm work and nifty handy work). Very soon, your chief operating officer (a.k.a. Queen) will succumb to heavy blows, resign off the chessboard, while your untrained undeveloped pieces will watch opposing army march in to your territory, and rip everything apart like after hostile acquisition. Congratulations, you have lost!

Rule 3. Pawn Promotion

If your pawns managed to reach the last rank, the rule require promoting them. It is very unfortunate rule. It would be so much simpler and chipper to keep them as pawns. It would also make them very inefficient on their last rank with nowhere to go and highly demotivated, thus simplifying our task to loose. Oh, well. There are ways around this little problem. Under-promote! Or better yet, mispromote. No one is forcing your hand. Why do you need to make your star excelsior into a queen? Make him a bishop! Let him go through the ranks. Yeah, it does not work this way in chess, but he does not need to know! If it was warranted to turn a pawn into a knight, make it a queen. Throw all the money at it and watch it fail. Then say: ”I gave you all the opportunity!” Then snigger quietly and collect another loss.

Rule 4. Even More Rules

Sure there is more ways to lose at chess. However, this is not a book but a small article. And perhaps, later I will feel that there are more of ways that are clear winners losers. Then I will definitely take the cover off my typewriter and share them with you.

Albert Glozman 1/20/2015

How to Loose at Chess

How to Loose at Chess

 

Do you play Chess? No?! No worries! You are already half-way there, as today I will be talking about how to lose at Chess!

Rule 1. Never learn rules!

This is true and tried. All you need to do is show up. Not showing up works just as well but is much less fun. Just imaging, sitting down at the board, enthusiastically greeting your opponent and asking him if he could advice you how the horsey thing moves. Be careful, however not to get into heated conversation with your opponent about pawns being able to take backwards as later may go into cardiac arrest and you will win by default. Otherwise, that is the easy road to failure, as even your slightest advances will be crashed almost instantaneously.

Rule 2. Pieces Development

If you were unfortunate to learn how to play, you cannot fake it. So, there are other ways. Do rely on moving your most senior pieces out early, while keeping knights and bishops well behind. It is important to give your strong and powerful figures full exposure to the all ranks of the enemy lines without necessary support from those who normally do all the leg work (as well as arm work and nifty handy work). Very soon, your chief operating officer (a.k.a. Queen) will succumb to heavy blows, resign off the chessboard, while your untrained undeveloped pieces will watch opposing army march in to your territory, and rip everything apart like after hostile acquisition. Congratulations, you have lost!

Rule 3. Pawn Promotion

If your pawns managed to reach the last rank, the rule require promoting them. It is very unfortunate rule. It would be so much simpler and chipper to keep them as pawns. It would also make them very inefficient on their last rank with nowhere to go and highly demotivated, thus simplifying our task to loose. Oh, well. There are ways around this little problem. Under-promote! Or better yet, mispromote. No one is forcing your hand. Why do you need to make your star excelsior into a queen? Make him a bishop! Let him go through the ranks. Yeah, it does not work this way in chess, but he does not need to know! If it was warranted to turn a pawn into a knight, make it a queen. Throw all the money at it and watch it fail. Then say: ”I gave you all the opportunity!” Then snigger quietly and collect another loss.

Rule 4. Even More Rules

Sure there is more ways to lose at chess. However, this is not a book but a small article. And perhaps, later I will feel that there are more of ways that are clear winners losers. Then I will definitely take the cover off my typewriter and share them with you.

Albert Glozman 1/20/2015

Девочки в Клеточку или Шары в Шароварах

Photo by Sebb

Могут ли женщины играть в шахматы? Могут ли женщины играть в шахматы на уровне мужчин?

Недавно я натолкнулся на интервью Левона Ароняна, в котором ни мало не смущаясь, он сказал: “женщины не могут играть в шахматы”. За что в свою очередь попал под атакующий огонь читателей chessbase.com. Некоторые бойцы за “справедливость” дошли до того что навесили на Левона ярлык “шовинист”.

Хотя, как сторонник равноправия полов, я не могу согласиться с мнением г-на Ароняна, но с остервенением готов защищать его право отстаивать (и тем более высказывать) свою точку зрения. Не слишком ли мы далеко заходим, когда в спорах лепим друг на друга ярлыки. Как можно вести откровенный диалог, если ни одна сторона не хочет слушать оппонента? И здесь мы как раз и имеем пример того, как стереотип порождает стереотип, а раздача ярлыков порождает ответную реакцию.

Что делает Левон: он берёт кисть и делает размашистый мазок: “женщины, вообще, слишком эмоциональны для шахмат”. Таким образом, он возрождает старый стереотип. А кто со стереотипом придёт… Ведь можно же довести ситуацию до абсурда заменив один стереотип на другой: “армяне, вообще, слишком эмоциональны для шахмат”. В конце концов, г-н Аронян сам замечает: “Порой у меня в голове слишком много крови”. Но означает ли это, что армяне не пригодны для шахмат? Ну, конечно же, нет! И уровень игры, демонстрируемый Левоном, является тому лишним подтверждением!

За последние примерно сто лет, у нас были чемпионы мира с такими разными характерами, как Ботвинник и Таль, Карпов и Каспаров. И часто более темпераментные игроки сменяли более расчётливых и наоборот. И хотя не надо быть семи пяди во лбу, чтобы знать, что женщины, в среднем, играют хуже, чем мужчины, в среднем, это не значит, что это потому, что женщины более эмоциональны. И уж тем более не значит, что женщина не может обыграть мужчину!

Я заканчиваю эту статью ужасно гордый тем, что не упомянул имя Полгар (ой, соскользнуло).

Putting Balls in Squares Holes

Photo by Sebb

Can women play chess? Can women play chess as good as men do?

I have recently read an interview with a super GM Levon Aronian where he bluntly states: “Women cannot play chess”. He was taken to the task by the readers of chessbase.com. Some of them went as far as calling him a chauvinist and sexist.

While, as a proponent of women’s rights, I may not agree with Mr. Aronian’s opinion, I would vehemently defend his right to say what he believes is true. Don’t we all go too far when starting an argument, we slap a label on our opponents? How can we have a sincere dialog when neither side wants to hear out another? And this is an excellent example how creation of stereotype or generalization of a very specific issue evokes other stereotypes.

What Levon does, he takes too broad of a brush: “women are generally much too emotional for chess”. Thus, he creates, or rather recreates an old stereotype. And who lives by stereotype, dies by stereotype. One could easily use an old myth and say: “Armenians are generally much too emotional for chess”. After all, Mr. Aronian admits: “Sometimes I have too much blood in my brain”. But would that mean that Armenians cannot play chess? Most definitely, not! And the level of play displayed by Mr. Aronian is a testament to that.

In the last about hundred years we have had world chess champions with such opposite personalities as Botvinnik and Tal, as Karpov and Kasparov; and more hot-headed player would often succeed the more cold-blooded one and then vice versa. And, although it is common knowledge that women on average do not perform in chess as well as men on average, it does not mean that it is because they are too emotional. And it definitely does not mean that a woman cannot outperform a man in chess.

I conclude my article on the proud note that I did not bring up name Polgar (or did I just do that?)