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rqbxo
28-08-2011, 10:47 AM
Here is the definitive guide to getting rid of players, especially people who have decided to try out your august establishment.

1. Expect your prospective club member to play games against the club's best players at a million miles an hour. Then go to step 2 based on these games.

2. When the person makes bad moves because they are nervous for being new, don't make any attempt to understand this. Instead do step 3.

3. Refer to the person as a beginner. In the third person in front of them is even more effective.

4. Throw chess puzzles at the new person without explaining any of the puzzle's context, previous moves etc. The person is kerflummoxed by the puzzle [see thinking style notes below] . Then repeat step 3 above.

1-4 have led me to give up OTB chess entirely. I play entirely on FICS [Free Internet chess server].

I am excluded from the crossboard chess clique because of my way of playing chess:

I CANNOT give a simul whatever rating I get to.
I CANNOT play blitz.
I CANNOT do puzzles without knowing what led to that position either by moves or synopsis.

I CAN play OK [I am about 1750 on FICS for standard allegro games whatever that rating means] mainly by positional/logical means; I don't calculate a lot and in most cases I don't calculate at all. That's just the way I think. It was obvious to me in the second playoff game of the British Champs that d7 was going to lead to immediate resignation from Short. I was watching the live stream. I didn't calculate anything. Not one move to know this. I play logically rater than visually. Thus I need to know the logic behind a puzzle before I can do anything with it: what's led up to it?

I also have a different type of chess memory to that of most players. I don't recall specific games or positions. I DO recall the ideas behind games. "That was the game where a pawn was pushed forward and it controlled a lot of squares and proved to be a spearhead..."

But all the chess clubs that I have ever tried have never validated my style of thinking, my way of playing, my way of doing things. I have to be like THEM. I have play chess like THEM. It has to be THEIR way.

FICS' gain may well be your loss.

Kevin Bonham
28-08-2011, 12:41 PM
Try a different club if this is possible. I don't think many OTB clubs would behave in the way you describe. Most would be sensitive that a new member probably doesn't want to be crushed in blitz games by the big guys.

And don't worry about not being able to give a simul. 90+% of club players would rarely play even two opponents at the same time. Simul-giving is for players who are typically hundreds of ratings points ahead of the pack they are giving the simul against.

rqbxo
28-08-2011, 01:09 PM
Kevin, thanks kindly for the feedback. Note that in the OP I have not named individual people or actual clubs. This is out of respect to people; I am not a saboteur. I will just say that I am a Victorian and these clubs were in Melbourne.

OK. Here we come to Simuls. There are some chess coaches such as Bill Jordan who claim that basically any player of 1700 ELO or above should be able to give a simul without too much trouble. [whether they win the games may be another matter]. I strongly disagree with this. I have only done a "simul" once. I played 3 people at once at a chess club - just messing about not really a formal simul - and I didn't like doing it at all. I would like to come back to the thinking styles that I mentioned. Seriously I think that I do not play chess visually. Rather, it is more for me a mix of logic and positional feel rather than calculation. I feel that this method/preference really puts me at a huge disadvantage in simuls and blitz. On the other hand it does to seem to be a strength with piece coordination and endgames. My worst phase is [obviously] the middlegame in which a calculative bent would help. I am better at openings and endgames.

But I feel excluded somehow, even tacitly, by the chess clique because it seems that you are not a chess player if you cannot bang out moves in 5 minute [or less] blitz or give simuls.

One thing I forgot as well. PLEASE, people who run clubs, I was brought up playing chess with analog clocks in the 80's so I find the digital clocks very hard to set. They confuse the bejesus out of me. Don't get me wrong. Of course digital clocks are better. But I had all sorts of farcical episodes. In one crossboard tournament at a chess club I couldn't figure out how to set the clock to an increment. So, I proceeded to play with my opponent getting the increment and I didn't so I ended up a queen up and was having to play with no time left at all. So, with 1 second left I threw away a winning position by leaving a queen en prise and lost. I wish that somebody could have explained to me how to set these damned digital clock things. They drove me nuts.

Anyway, I suppose that for so much emphasis on chess styles and ways of thinking I should post a game that fleshes out what I mean.

rqbxo
28-08-2011, 01:39 PM
Event: rated standard match
Site: Free Internet Chess Server
Date: 2011.08.14
Round: ?
White: linuxblue
Black: torrenegrajn
Result: 1-0
WhiteElo: 1694
BlackElo: 1819
ECO: C02
TimeControl: 900

1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. e5 c5 4. c3 Nc6 5. Nf3 cxd4 6. cxd4 Nge7 7. Bd3 Qb6 8.
Bc2 Bd7 9. O-O Ng6 10. a3 Be7 11. Nc3 f6 12. Bxg6+ hxg6 13. Qc2 f5 14. Rd1
Kf7 15. Na4 Qc7 16. Ng5+ Bxg5 17. Bxg5 Rh5 18. h4 Rah8 19. Nc5 Bc8 20. b4
Nxe5 21. dxe5 b6 22. Rac1 bxc5 23. Qxc5 Qxc5 24. Rxc5 Re8 25. Rc7+ Kf8 26.
Rxa7 Rh8 27. Rc1 Kg8 28. Rcc7 {torrenegrajn resigns} 1-0

Not sure how to put the FEN in. Anyway that is one of my better games on FICS. Doesn't happen that often. Good when it happens though.

I was white. I had a lot of trouble against the French in the advanced line. But here I cracked it :) For awhile I chickened out with the French exchange. But not here :)

rqbxo
28-08-2011, 01:48 PM
There was virtually no calculation at all there. Just put the pieces on the best squares and I got a positionally won game at the end [obviously]; my white rooks and bishop are pretty strangling.

Kevin Bonham
28-08-2011, 04:42 PM
So, with 1 second left I threw away a winning position by leaving a queen en prise and lost. I wish that somebody could have explained to me how to set these damned digital clock things. They drove me nuts.

The most important thing in this case is to know how to stop the clock and seek the arbiter's assistance, which is your right. So if you are ever playing in a tournament and not familiar with the digital clock, ask the arbiter how you stop the thing if you need to. That will mean that if the clock is not set properly and you notice this, you can save yourself from losing on time.

As for the clubs thing: I suspect there's at least one club in Melbourne where a lot of the casual play is blitz. But they can't all be like that and there are lots of clubs in the Melbourne area.

Kevin Bonham
28-08-2011, 05:15 PM
I was white. I had a lot of trouble against the French in the advanced line. But here I cracked it :)

Quite an interesting game.

Your opponent ticked a few boxes for how not to play against the Advanced. Having decided to take in the center immediately (which is not that great) and play ...Nge7 before his KB has emerged he should play ...Nf5 right away. Some players like to make white play Bxf5 despite the pawn structure damage.

You actually didn't need to play 8.Bc2. You can just play 8.Nc3 since he is not really attacking the d-pawn, because of the discovered check threat winning the queen at the end of the sequence.

...Ng6 from black is often a bad sign as the N tends to be very passive there. Here it doesn't seem too bad and I think a worse positional error is taking on g5. Aside from giving up bishop for knight for no reason black is giving his opponent the only dark square bishop in a position where he already has dark square holes. h4 consolidating this turns out to be very useful.

The opponent played his ...Nxe5 idea one move too late. The move before it was OK. Instead by playing ...Bc8? and then trying the same idea he lost the option of contesting the file which proved disastrous. 22.Rac1 is a strong move after which black is totally lost.


There are some chess coaches such as Bill Jordan who claim that basically any player of 1700 ELO or above should be able to give a simul without too much trouble.

He would mean 1700 as an over the board rating. Internet ratings are often inflated by hundreds of points compared to the OTB rating the same player would get once their rating settled down.

kibitzer
30-08-2011, 01:43 PM
Who are these fiends slapping down puzzles in front of you and demanding you solve them?

rqbxo
30-08-2011, 01:52 PM
They are fiends sent by Caissa to torment me.

rqbxo
30-08-2011, 11:50 PM
It is time to name people. I have had enough.

The club was [removed-mod]. The stupid &*^% was called [name removed but not Bill Jordan-mod]. He wrote me off as a beginner. What the hell has he done in chess anyway? Vic champ? Anything?

He threw puzzles at me. No explanation of what went on before. How the hell am I meant to solve a puzzle like that?

Sorry if it disappoints Bill Jordan or anyone else. But I can't f*(&^ing simul, blitz or solve puzzles. Wouldn't matter if I got a rating of 2800. The point that I have been TRYING to make throughout this thread, that[removed] don't get , is that as a chessplayer what somebody can/cannot do is a holistic picture . Not just IQ or intelligence. I have tried everything to not drop pieces in time scrambles. But it is just the way I am.

Actually what disappointed me about [removed] was that when I played him I clearly showed enough beyond a beginner stage. But of course he ^&%$ wrote me off like every other &*^* sucker who I have ever come across at chess clubs. I am no chess expert. But at least I can ATTEMPT to do the right thing.

Good riddance to OTB. Onwards with FICS.

Rincewind
31-08-2011, 12:40 AM
Sounds like you had a bad experience there but in all seriousness many people (including I believe Bill Jordan) think that doing tactical exercises is a good way that many people can improve their calculation ability. Maybe you are the exception so if someone wants you to look at a puzzle - just say "thanks but no thanks".

In short, I'd suggest to concentrate on the positives. You like FICS which is cool and lots of people these days play predominately or entirely online. I don't think railing against someone online who probably doesn't post here (as far as I know) is really a very effective way of dealing with a situation that you found unpleasant.

Hobbes
31-08-2011, 12:48 AM
He wrote me off as a beginner. What the hell has he done in chess anyway? Vic champ? Anything?

Don't you agree that a Vic champ would be wasting his time with you, and therefore a lesser luminary might well be appropriate?


Actually what disappointed me about [removed] was that when I played him I clearly showed enough beyond a beginner stage. But of course he ^&%$ wrote me off like every other &*^* sucker who I have ever come across at chess clubs.

Now we are getting hints of useful information! So far we only have your word for it that you 'clearly showed enough beyond a beginner stage'. But to balance that, we discover that Every! Single! Other! Person you have come across at chess clubs comes to the opposite conclusion. Hmm.

OK, now you have a choice, not sure which of these options you have used so far, but if you have tried one of them you could switch to the other next time.

(a) suggest that even though the people you play may not be able to detect it with the naked eye, in fact you have special powers, and a way of looking at the game that is unique. After losing your games, you could offer to teach your methods, perhaps ask if you can give regular lectures at the club.

(b) leave your ego at the door, and recognise that by attending a club you have the opportunity to learn and improve!

Hope this helps!

Kevin Bonham
31-08-2011, 01:41 AM
Moderation Notice


It is time to name people.

If you are going to start naming people who may not post here, in a somewhat abusive fashion and making claims that we are in no position to verify, then the person you can start by naming is yourself. Anything else is unfair. Therefore if you wish to go down that path please include your real name (first name and surname) on future such posts and supply evidence to the moderators that it is indeed your real name.

MichaelBaron
31-08-2011, 05:05 PM
Join Melbourne chess club - and you can come and play socially any time or play tournament chess (all time limits available). Nobody will force you to solve puzzle over there. Anyway, what's a big deal if someone shows you a puzzle? You just tell them you are not interested in solving them! Its a free country - nobody has to solve puzzles.

MichaelBaron
31-08-2011, 05:10 PM
Actually what disappointed me about [removed] was that when I played him I clearly showed enough beyond a beginner stage. .

Why do you need to show anything to anyone? Did you play in order to enjoy it? or improve your game? or just to ''show''?

Playing to ''show'' is a sign of sick ego, inferiority complexes, and a bunch of other mental problems and insecurities :D

Garrett
31-08-2011, 06:43 PM
Join Melbourne chess club

Yes, as an infrequent visitor to the MCC, I can say it is a great club !!

machomortensen
01-09-2011, 05:04 AM
My words, Garrett.

And nobody have forced me to play a blitzgame for years... Not even Down Under...

Max Illingworth
01-09-2011, 06:19 AM
Chess clubs differ somewhat in atmosphere, number of members, and types of tournaments, but I've found that it is quite enjoyable to play chess at a local club once you are familiar with the club and some of its members.

It's unfortunate if you have had bad experiences at chess clubs, but sometimes it helps to consider the events of the night from the other person's/peoples' point of view. I agree with Rincewind that it helps to focus on the positives.

And as a final note, 'I do not agree with what you have to play, but I will defend to the death your right to play it.' (Voltaire, with 'play' instead of 'say').

FM_Bill
28-07-2012, 11:45 PM
Old thread, but anyway...

I don't recall making the remark about simuls though I would have meant against clearly weaker opposition. I once saw a player rated about 1500 give a simul against about 20 players, though that was a bit unusual (and he was 8 years old at the time.)

1700 would be a low estimate. My hunch is that most 1700-2000 ACF rated players could give a simul against say 10 novices and win every game. Most players never give a simul though.

Blindfold chess is interesting. Its my observation is that very few under 2000 players can play blindfold. However, it would be a rare master who couldn't.

Paul Cavezza
30-07-2012, 01:27 AM
What an epic whinge from that OP! Part of the exhilaration of chess is that it's your mind on trial, if you don't want that then stick to baking.

tanc
30-07-2012, 05:37 PM
To the OP, IMHO the quickest sure-fire way to lose newcomers comes from the impression (good or otherwise) that one gets from the chess club and how it conducts itself. And this includes the display of the attitude and integrity of the club players both on and off the board. In other words, you can tell a lot about a chess club by how its club members behave.