Man de la Maza

Monday, March 28, 2005

Saddler -- Chapter 1

Finished Chapter One of Saddler's "Queen's Gambit Declined" last night. I am enjoying it very much. He has put thought into the games selected and the method of presentation. The explanations are just at my level. At the same time I am watching Kasparov's "Queen's Gambit" CD which I am less impressed with. Though Kaparov's knowledge is far-reaching, one gets the impression that they set up a camera and said "talk about the Queen's Gambit Declined, Garry". Nonetheless, I find jumping back and forth between two different presntations of the same material to be useful. Kasparov paints a broad landscape and Saddler fills in the details.

Played a Queen's pawn opening in my club game last week against a B player. Naturally, he played the Slav, and I displayed my ignorance of the nuances of that opening system very well. By move 4, I had trapped my Queen's bishop behind an adavanced e pawn. I hung in there and was eventually able to bust up his queenside and win the endgame. Tactics never came into play directly, but I was able to do a few things because of tactical threats. He had back rank problems most all of the game which kept being useful. One thing I find different now is my evaluation of postions. I feel like I can smell danger a lot better which means I don't waste a lot of time calculating.

I'm not sure what kind of study pace I will be able to keep up with in coming months. I am on a new health and fitness quest which takes up at least an hour and change a day. The Empress and I also had words about how I was "sneaking off to play !!@$%^ chess" every chance I got. Sadly, I had to admit she was right and that I really needed to cut back on my caissaic activities (at least until the kids go to bed).


  • I feel like I can smell danger a lot better which means I don't waste a lot of time calculating

    Once I played a lot of games against the former Blitz-champion of France. What was remarkable was that he always played a tempo, except when I played a homepreparated openingtrap. Then he always looked if he smelled rats, and played simply around it.
    Very impressive.
    No need to mention I lost everytime though he never used more than 1 minute while I had used 5 minutes.

    By Blogger Temposchlucker, at 6:28 AM  

  • I understand the need to balance family and chess. I usually don't begin my chess study in earnest until 8:00p during the week, which is after the kids' bedtimes. Also, I tell my wife about tournaments weeks in advance, and she knows I'll be gone nearly every Tuesday night for chess club.

    By Blogger CelticDeath, at 7:33 AM  

  • Sometimes I wonder if our wives aren't sometimes embarrassed with our chess practice, because man, I think that they should be happy clams that we are going out with the boys drinking every night. My wife and I got into an argument the other night about it, but the problem is, I only get in a few games a week, and I don't do tournaments (although I would like to someday).

    I think girls want the bad boy. We're not bad boys, so they gotta find something to complain about.

    By Blogger psalcido, at 9:11 AM  

  • I dunno, Paul. I manage to be at least somewhat of a bad boy. Just enough to keep her interest! ;-)

    By Blogger CelticDeath, at 10:35 AM  

  • Paul, amen to that. I used to play a lot of video games and my girlfriend would get upset with me. Now that I'm playing chess she says I am playing too much chess. The funny thing is she says this without taking her eyes off of "American Idol". So one day I get brave and I snap back "Yeah, well you watch too much TV." Dumb move....


    By Blogger Pawn Sensei, at 11:45 PM  

  • Not a bad boy! Hell, I often play the King's Gambit without playing Nf3! I'm a freakin' wild man.

    By Blogger Don Q., at 4:26 AM  

  • Sometimes I snap back, but only once or twice, and I actually have some luck in the fact that my wife is somewhat logical. This is not common at all, however, despite this, she still does not like chess that much, but does admit sometimes that it isn't so bad for me to play and practice, if that's what I want to spend my time doing.

    I mean, after all, just put her in front of Animal Crossing, then we'll talk about being unavailable or playing to many games.

    By Blogger psalcido, at 11:04 AM  

  • "Hell hath no fury like a woman's scorn" as they say. Don, I have to give your wife props for indulging your MDLM madness. Sound's like she's trying to use some of that credit. My girlfriend has been equally supportive of my efforts, but I know when this is over, she will own me for some time...and how!

    By Blogger Pale Morning Dun - Errant Knight de la Maza, at 11:35 AM  

  • Actually, I think it is "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned" which actually gets to the root of our respective spouses/girlfriends displeasure. It's not the chess; they just don't like to be ignored. We, of course, don't mind being ignored in the least because this is just more time to play chess.

    By Blogger Don Q., at 1:30 PM  

  • Pale, if I understand your timeschemes right, that will be AFTER the troutfishingseason?:)

    By Blogger Temposchlucker, at 1:34 PM  

  • Yeah, he got you there PMD.


    By Blogger Pawn Sensei, at 2:46 PM  

  • Scorned or scorn, agreed. The ladies like to be attended to. Tempo is right about the fishing season. I'm in deep trouble. This thing is going to steam roll from MDLM's seven circles right into prime time trout season. I am preparing my blog template for "Single Guys" now.

    By Blogger Pale Morning Dun - Errant Knight de la Maza, at 11:59 AM  

  • Oh, btw. I find that a 15 minute foot massage can buy you about 2 to 3 hours of chess time. I'll let you do the math.


    By Blogger Pawn Sensei, at 2:55 PM  

  • Ah, the comments have turned towards significant others. No wonder we have 13 (about to be 14) posts on a chess topic. :-)

    I'm very lucky that my wife is supportive of my chess habit. Fortunately we both have lots of things that we like to do on our own while still in the same room. So I might be doing chess problems while my wife is playing on the computer or reading. So chess study time still counts as semi-"quality time".

    That said, she has told me she'll be very glad when I'm done with the MDLM plan because she hates to see me so frustrated when problems are not going well.

    RE: Chess stuff, I just got the Kasparov QGD DVD and I was not all that impressed with it, either. I've only watched the first three or four segments, and while interesting and entertaining, I got far more out of the Sadler book. It is interesting, however, to hear Garry talk about the history development of various lines which you don't really get out of Sadler's book.

    A few years ago I decided to try out some chess videos. These also fell into the "fun but useless" category for me. I guess video stuff just doesn't suit my learning style.

    In all fairness, I've not finished the DVD, so maybe there are some things that will really stick coming up.


    By Blogger fussylizard, at 11:47 AM  

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