Fourth position

Played another G/45 at the Mechanics Institute club this past weekend. Here’s a final-round game that’s kind of comically inept, although that sounds harsher than I mean it. But there’s a long sequence where every move by either of us improves the other guy’s position by a half-pawn or more. C’mon gang, let’s count the wrong moves! Mays … More Fourth position


A certain massive donut retailer has been advertising “artisan” bagels. As Inego Montoya would say, I do not think that word means what they think it means. Here is the work of a potter,  my friend Doug Law. We have a couple of Doug’s pieces in our house, and they’re just wonderful. And I’ve had … More Artisans

Bottom shelf

Carlo Rossi and his bottom-shelf friends (Gallo, Almaden, etc) make some interesting varieties of wine. “Rhine Style” and “Sangria” are two flavors available in the big jug size. To my mind calling it Rhine Style is slightly more specific than just putting “Germany Wine” on the label, which would be one stage away from “Grape Wine”. … More Bottom shelf

Leg before wicket

That’s a foul in cricket. The general point is that the batsman can’t use his body to keep the ball from hitting the wicket – he has to use the bat. But it’s apparently a confusing rule, and/or difficult to apply correctly. And it’s a wonderful way to describe a messed-up situation without swearing. Use in … More Leg before wicket