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Back to the (Chess) Board

April 13, 2012

I used to be a chess champion.  Now I’m just an enthusiastic A player, trying to become a Master.

I began playing in USCF rated tournaments in 1993, when I was 10 years old.  I quickly became one of Ohio’s top players for my age, placing 2nd in the State Elementary Championship Tournament in 1994.  By the end of 1994, I had placed 3rd at the National K-12 Championships, 6th Grade section.  By 1998, I was rated 1950, and had won Ohio’s High School, Middle School, and Elementary School Championships at various points.

And then, like Bobby Fischer, I disappeared.  OK, that’s pushing the melodrama way over the top–Fischer had won the World Championship and disappeared because he went insane.  I stopped because I got bored, and spent my time in high school on math and debate competitions.

Fast forward to 2012.  I had played in a few tournaments in college, without bothering to study or regain my edge, and let my rating fall to 1774 after a disappointing Pan-Am Intercollegiate Tournament as Princeton’s mostly ineffective 4th board.  For some reason, I wanted to start playing again–intellectual boredom as a lawyer probably being the cause (so much document review).  I discovered the Marshall Chess Club, devoured Dan Heisman’s “Novice Nook” columns at ChessCafe, and started playing again.  And renewed my TD certification, helping direct NYChessKids tournaments.

So I thought I’d blog about it, including stories from directing kids, annotated games, thoughts on the chess world, and all that fun stuff.



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