Man de la Maza

Monday, October 18, 2004

Resting Up for the Big Day

It was a quiet weekend. I can't say I approached my exercises with vim and vigor, but I did manage to spend some time with them every day. The minimal path exercise is quite challenging. With the exception of the squares f3, f6, b3, and b6, I do all the minimal paths from d5. The other four squares have 54 (perhaps less on b6) possible paths, and well, I 'm just not that committed.

This coming Wednesday is that big day when I start the 7 cirlces exercises. I must say I'm ready to dive into the practical tactical. I must also admit that I'm doubtful that I'll be able to find the time to keep up the schedule. I've been putting in about an hour a night; I'll have to double that. It is a lot of time away from family activity and responsibilties. I'd still say I'm a pretty big longshot to make it -- 10-1 against. A good test will be the holiday season which will hit right when I think the problems will start to get really hard, late November, early December. If I make it through the first circle, I might think the odds would go down to 5-1.

Spent some time yesterday morning looking over the Leko-Kramnik rook endgame from game 13. I was reminded of Dr. Tarrasch's comment that "Chess has the power to make men happy" because I had a lot of fun. It is partially the acquisitive joy of squirreling away knowledge for use against an unsuspecting opponent, and it is partially the joy of working through a puzzle.

26 down, 129 to go


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