10 simple universal chess truths

1. Winning is great and losing stinks.

2. Drawing from a won position stinks, and drawing from a busted position is almost better than winning.

3. In order for you to win, your opponent has to play REALLY BADLY.

4. You will never understand the Gruenfeld, for either side.

5. Masters walking by your middlegame will show no interest. Masters walking by your endgame will stop and study the position.

6. Computer chess is an interesting computer issue but not an interesting chess issue.

7. Blitz hinders your growth.

8. Team tournaments are way better than individual tournaments.

9. The world championship will always be a mess, because money ruins everything.

10. Any time you study in a restaurant or public space, several people will walk up and say “Hey, who’s winning!” and guffaw at their own cleverness. This will continue until the day you die.

11 thoughts on “10 simple universal chess truths

  1. Another variation on number ten: “Hey, are you playing with yourself?” This also leads to the obligatory guffaw.

  2. [] – Oh that’s fine. I was really thinking about the man vs. machine match angle.

    GK – so true. OMG, HAW HAW, “playing with yourself”, that’s HILARIOUS!! *wipes tear from eye*

    Harvey – tx. That Nb8-c6-e5-f7-h6-g8-h6 was possibly the Worst Knight Ever :)

  3. Dude,

    This list is very poetic. What are you talking about?


    on #1: Not necessarily.

    on #3: Not necessarily.

    on #4: Yes! I need to give it up.

    on #5: That’s because masters enjoy the endgame more than every other aspect of chess. That’s their secret.

    on #7: Amen. I can’t agree more. (Now where’s that green dot? I need a fix — now!)

    on #10: Second most popular phrase: “I used to play chess…but don’t any more.” Third most popular: “I used to know the rules. My nephew [niece, grandson, daughter, whatever] plays chess.” Fourth most popular: “Does that Fischer, or what’s his name, Kar…Kasp…[you wind up finishing the sentence] still play?”

  4. LOL love it.

    I will have to experiment with #10 and track the responses.

    Howard’s quibble with #1 is understandable (my proudest moment was a 1.5/4 tournament result against competition rated 400-500 above me. But I’m still embarrassed by a hard-fought victory against a 900.)

    Although, #3 is definitely true for at least Class players (if you want, soften the adjective as you go up the rating scale.)

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