My opponent’s past relationship woes we spoke about after the game reminded me of this song from E.L.O. Chin up, as they say.
The game, yes, well first I’d like to say what I kept to myself. It was really annoying for me during the game how at this site everyone walks by close and looks at the game, even someone who wasn’t playing. This is really okay, but the venue has the tables scrunched together and I found this to be really distracting. For example, I had seen that 20.Nxg6 would be a blunder, before he played it, say that I could get my knight out with Nf3+, but once he played it lots of people started walking by to see the combo and it was driving me nuts inside. So I didn’t see it once he played it and I thought to myself “Okay, just to stop everyone from looking at my board, I will take his knight, because I know it is a good move.” Simply didn’t see the Nf3+ working at that point, but thought I had seen it before.
I love the venue where we play at on Wednesday’s, but on Thursdays I put up with playing here because that’s what I have to do to play against higher-rated players. It’s simply tougher to focus when people stand next to my board because the aisle between tables isn’t even 2 ft. wide, and sometimes we even play in the middle of the restaurant. It’s very bright in there and makes distractions more prominent. I’m really lucky that the game ended up as well as it did, because I am not calculating all that well lately, and particularly not there.
In any case, my opening preparation sucked, as usual, but I got lucky when he played NxBe7, trading one of his best pieces for my worst piece on the board. I was planning to play ..Bf6, not noticing he can play g5, hitting it, until right after I had played ..Nd7. Not sure how the game would have gone for me had he not made that trade, probably pretty badly I suppose.
My opponent was a gentleman, and I like playing him. I have to say that he was working and away from chess for 6 months, so he is rusty and the win was not unexpected. But with rating points, you take them any way you can get them of course.
Dan, my opponent, saw a ghost when he played 19.Qe1. He was afraid after 19.Qe3, that I would play 19…h6 and his bishop “has nowhere to go”. This isn’t true though. After 20.NxB, he was 21.Bh5.
Next Thursday I play Anthea, if nothing changes. She just came back and won her two games this week looking/playing very serious in the first time I can remember. She beat Alex with 44 minutes left on her clock to his 4, and he usually has an hour left. Alex beat me with the King’s Gambit in blitz, but I don’t even remember the last part of the game because I was talking to Dan about his girl-trouble woes while playing (I wasn’t even hitting my clock). I’ll probably play Alex on Wednesday is my guess (as White), as we both have 1 out of 2, but I’m not as sure of that matchup.