Thursday, June 28, 2007

Benefit for the Cedar Cultural Center this Sunday

The Cedar has featured many great bands from all over the world. Among some of the best shows I've seen there have been local jazz musicians Happy Apple, Tuvan throat singers Hun-Huur-Tu, Italian electronic band Fiamma Fumana, and alt-country Luther Wright and The Wrongs. (The latter did a bluegrass, honky-tonk, and country cover of Floyd's The Wall.)

If you are inclined, please check this event out. Full details are here.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Thursday Knighter VI, Round 2

Last night Justin Backes and I played against each other. It turned out to be a Caro-Kann with an unusual, but playable 5. Qf3. There were some moments where I think each of us could have played more accurate moves (he could have retreated his Bishop to d3 to avoid capture by my Knight and I could have played Bxh2+), but overall I was satisfied with our play.

At the end of his 30th move, he asked for a draw. I appreciated the offer, although I took five minutes to consider it. I didn't see a winning plan for either of us, and I agreed.

[Event "Thursday Knighter VI"]
[Site "Chess Castle"]
[Date "2007.6.14"]
[Round "2"]
[White "Justin Backes"]
[Black "Joe Erjavec"]
[Result "1/2-1/2"]

1.e4 c6 2.Nc3 d5 3.d4 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Bf5 5.Qf3 e6 6.Be3 Nd7 7.Bd3 Bxe4 8.Bxe4 Ngf6 9.Bg5 h6 10.Be3 Bd6 11.Ne2 O-O 12.O-O Re8 13.Ng3 Qc7 14.Nh5 Nxe4 15.Qxe4 f5 16.Qh4 Be7 17.Qg3 Qxg3 18.hxg3 g6 19.Nf4 Kf7 20.Nd3 g5 21.Ne5+ Nxe5 22.dxe5 b6 23.Rfd1 Red8 24.Rd3 Rxd3 25.cxd3 Rd8 26.Rd1 c5 27.b3 Rd5 28.f4 gxf4 29.gxf4 h5 30.Kh2 1/2-1/2

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

My review of the final episode of The Sopranos

For those of you who have already watched this episode and are interested, please read my review over at Blogcritics. Thank you!

No More Effin' Ziti

Friday, June 08, 2007

Thursday Knighter VI

Last night fifteen of us made our appearances for the June Thursday Knighter. I am the second lowest rated player this month at 1421, and Steve Turmo is still the highest rated player at 2023.

I played the sixth seed, John Loftus, a class B at 1744. I lost this game, but I felt satisfied with my play. It was one of the few games in which I did not leave the table. It was a complicated morass!

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Some Particle news

A couple of members of Particle have been in the music news lately. Keyboardist Steve Molitz played a gig with Phil Lesh and Friends at this past weekend's Mountain Jam. He joined Phil, Warren Haynes, John Scofield, and John Molo for an incredible show. (A download is available here. I wasn't at the show, so I was one of many downloaders. It's a very hot show!)

Particle's drummer, Darren Pujalet, is featured in Modern Drummer. Congrats, Darren!

Description of Monday's simul by DeWitt Green

Chess Night

Chess “Expert” Jerome Mitchell stepped out of his comfort zone Monday 4 June. He simultaneously played and defeated eight players at once.

The “Simul” kicked off the newly sanctioned Midtown Global Market (MGM) Chess Club. We meet every Monday 4:30-8 P.M. in one of the open areas of the Market. Because it is a public arena some chess players may have trouble concentrating. This did not seem to bother Jerome at all.

During the battle Jerome seemed to be pursuing three different openings and juggled each to checkmate. A knowledgeable spectator stated that Jerome aggressively played each match until he had a clear advantage then coasted into each mate. As one of the admittedly weaker players it did not appear like he was taking it easy. I was counting on the numbers to cause him to make at least one mistake. Preferably his misstep would be on my board. Jerome had determined not to make mistakes.

As he mated each of us he shook hands and commented on some key point each of us had presented. That is the only reason a person can willingly put his “cred” on the line. He strengthens his game by sharpening his skills on more and or stronger opponents. At the end of his session Jerome exclaimed “more!” Maybe next time he’ll try 12 at once.

The value of having regular contact with stronger competitors and a variety of players is the club members get stronger as a group. It is within the mission of Uplift-Chess, which has teamed with MGM, to bring chess to anyone. We compare chess skills to life skills. In developing chess skills we are developing critical thinking skills. Those skills are preparing us and ours to reach higher.

Uplift-Chess is looking forward to developing a competitive team. If you are interested in being part of that push join us for Chess Night at Midtown Global Market Mondays 4:30-8 P.M.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

I played in a simul last night

Thanks to the efforts of DeWitt Green, a chess instructor at Sanford Middle School, I was able to play in a simul against local expert Jerome Mitchell. Jerome played eight of us last night at the Midtown Global Market. I lost, but it was fun playing against him.

DeWitt will be organizing some type of event every Monday from 4:30 - 8:00 p.m. Join us if you have time!

(Good luck again to Dane Mattson, who will be heading to Las Vegas! Dane was checking out the action last evening.)