What can you do?
You teach your kids to play Chess to keep them out of trouble.
This is my charming daughter Kelly skewering a knight on the High Street.
Her case comes up next Tuesday.
Hey! I'm Getting Better (...till I did some stupid research).
I'm playing 5 minute net chess in the Internet Cafe.
This position arrives, there has just been a Queen exchange
on f2. I'm Black and I'm up on the clock by about 1 minute
so I'm going to run him out of time.
I played, after a second of thought, 1...Kd4!! (1...Ke4? draws)
I've been hanging around Ruxton too long.
(Having a strong player in the mix can make a difference.
Everybody's grades in Bells 1 went up. This was Keith showing us stuff.)
1...Kd4!! Seizing the diagonal opposition. Eventually I get to f3 and
the g3 pawns falls. I did not work out 1...Kd4!! - I just knew that was the move.
Work it out yourself. Black has the opposition and forces itself onto f3.
The following position appeared and I also know that who ever moves, Black wins.
However if it is Black to move then watch out for 1...Kf3 2.Kh2...
2...g3+ 3.Kh1 draws.
1...Kh3 gives the King room so no stalemating chance.
Notice if you do stumble with 1...Kf3 2.Kh2 don't touch the pawn. You can get
another chance with 2...Kf2 3.Kh1 Kg3. You can blunder and still win.
My opponent sent me 'GG' (Good Game).
I sent back "Learn your basic pawn endings." and signed off.
So that was me cock-a-hoop and strolled home thinking I'm now
King Verooka because I can play moves like 1...Kd4!! without thinking.
Sac-sac mate combinations are second nature. Suddenly I can
play endgames. It's so easy.
And now another Chandler Chess Coincidence.
Back home and I fire up my database looking for the original
position to see if anybody else has had this position (and not found Kd4).
I make a cup tea. Watch a bit of TV and return to my computer.
One game found. My eyeballs pop. A Jonathan Rowson game.
J.Rowson - P.Hillarp, York, 1999. reached exactly the same position.
Hillarp played Kd4 and won similar to my game.
So now with my newly acquired endgame knowledge I can beat J.R.
And there I should have left it. I should have grabbed what I had,
put down the basics and that's another Chandler Cornered done.
But no. I had to go back and have a look at the J.Rowson - P.Hillarp game.
This position was reached with Black to play.
Black played for a swap off on f2. 53...Rxf2+ 54.Rxf2 Bxf2 55.Kxf2...
reaching the key position and then played 55...Kd4!!
What a bummer. I have to be honest and hopelessly admit that heading
for an even ending because I can play 55...Kd4 and win would not have
entered my tiny mind.
I know me very well. It just would not have clicked.
I would have come up with the plan Rf3-b3-b2.
And after 1.Rxb2 Bxb2 2.f3... draw agreed.
Drats! Now I have to learn transitions into won endings combinations.
There is a morale in here somewhere, but I am far too depressed to think of it.
It's naff thinking you somehow got good only to realise you are still
the same stumbling, crumbling hacker you have always been.
I blame Rowson. Why did he allow it?
(it's incredible that I can only find one game from that position).
If Jonathan had avoided that line then I would have been none the wiser.
Couple that with the fact that I was about to 'retire' then I read
Jonathan's 'Chess for Zebras' and got that old feeling back again.
He could have used the game, it was quite instructive.
Most likely too basic for his level.
The Edinburgh Chess League Committee have opened up a shop.
That's me in trouble again. I'm always in trouble,
the only thing that varies in the depth.
I'm just back from Bells. I typed all the above earlier.
I gave the King & Pawns position where I found Kd4 blindfold to Keith.
He said "King d4" quicker than I played it.
I'm now even more depressed... I thought I had got good.
Somebody bought a Sunday Express (why-there is no chess column).
This weeks freebie was a Dusty Springfield CD... I like Dusty Springfield.
I was given it and just a few minutes ago I played the CD.
What a cheap trick. Her greatest hit; "I Only Want To Be With You"
is a terrible live recording that lasts only 25 seconds.
Then you are treated to the really naff bonus tracks from groups you never heard of.
There is no Footnote No.4.