Friday, July 31, 2009

Started reading another chess book and remembered a tournament from the past.

I recently started reading another chess book. The name of it is Kings Gambit by Paul Hoffman.
In chapter one, The Insanity Defense, the author and his father go to meet Rossolimo. He was a prominent GM from the past. When Rossolimo played a game of chess with the young author he managed to lose and kicked him and his father out of his home. While Paul went on to discuss the subject of chess players of all levels throwing fits and tantrums when having lost a game, this reminded me of my own little story on that subject.
There was this tournament called The Cheap Shot Open that I decided to attend with a few buddies. I didn't expect to go to this tournament and play against any of my friends. But it happened. So here I am facing my friend at a tournament game and along comes this character we dubbed "Butt-Cheeks". He would come to tournaments and watch the games, but I don't remember if he played at all. In any case he was watching our game and leaning in to see the score and the position on the board. And invariably every time he did so half of his hind quarters would hang out and add to the dank stank of the tournament hall! EWWWWWWWW! I managed to go on to lose the game to my friend. A few rounds later, perhaps an hour or so into the game, there is the loud interruption of a fist banging on a table directly in the center of the playing hall.
I look up to see that everyone has stopped playing their games to see what all this din is about. I turned in the direction of their gaze, to see that there is Butt-Cheeks, in all his glory, leaning over my friends game as he begins to scream out loud at the top of his lungs,"Fuck! Fuck fuck!!! Fuck fuck fuck fuck!!!!!!!!" My friend then proceeded to get up and storm out of the room slamming doors and still bellowing at the top of his lungs, "Fuck!!!!" Hahahahah!!!!! I could NOT believe that my friend, a big hoidy toidy college grad, with such a prestigious education and refinement, would act like this! That was just incredible that he would act like this. It took him several weeks before he would even discuss it with me. Turns out he had given his queen away for free.
That was enough to convince ME that most anyone would be susceptible to this kind of behavior in chess if they don't learn to control that kind of thing. I am not sure where I read or heard this, but I think that Bobby Fischer and Pal Benko even got into fisticuffs over something at a tournament. Anyone know anything about that? Please post a comment and lemme know.

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