Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Don't Get Smart!

Eat your peas, control the center, develop your pieces, and don’t get too fancy

It’s Wacky Wednesday, kids, the day that by common agreement has been set aside for chess bloggers to come clean and publish their quickest and most humiliating losses. Because I’ve demonstrated my willingness to do this in the past and promise to do so again in the future, I hope my colleagues will forgive me for bending the rules a bit today and showcasing not one of my own horrendous losses, but that of a worthy opponent I played in an online blitz game early this morning.

I think I can justify the transgression based on the instructiveness of the game itself and its value as an object lesson in what not to do.

As you can see from the classification above, Black’s defense is called the Grob—the macho variation to be specific. It involves opening with flank pawns, flouting most chess wisdom. As I understand it this is a tack taken frequently by chess hustlers who know how to use the approach to catch novices unawares. Among the many virtues of Paul Hoffman’s excellent King’s Gambit is a thorough review of the Grob and its history.

The thing is, this is unsound chess and should not be attempted by players who don’t know what they’re doing, as my opponent clearly did not. Among other faults, he or she did not develop his or her pieces, and this led to an early checkmate because his or her king was trapped. Don’t let it happen to you—whether you be a she or a he. Open with your center pawns, develop your pieces rapidly, and if you want to play an offbeat opening, try to make sure you know what you’re doing.

End of lecture. Now go have fun, and as Bruce Pandolfini says, be brilliant.

And as Chessdad64 says, Kumbaya.

Game viewer:


Polly said...

That definitely meets the Wacky Wednesday criteria. Black clearly played a totally wacked out line there. Nice play on your part. As I said in my first WW post, I would give equal time to games where I was on the receiving end of opponent stupiidty.

I'm still waiting for others to join in so that we can have a Wacky Wednesday carnival with the wackest games submitted.

Tom Panelas said...

Thanks, Polly. I'll be back for future Wacky Wednesdays. When it comes to blunder-laden games, I've got plenty of inventory.

I think a carnival of sorts is a good idea, too. I'll try to spread the word and maybe the idea will catch on.