When it comes to sewing quilt blocks, I'm afraid I'm a total failure. I seem to put in 1 good stitch for every 100 I take out--and in the end, my blocks are still mismatched and the wrong size! Truth is, I've found what my calling in life isn't--I'm not cut out to be a seamstress! But that doesn't mean I'm going to quit trying...I pick up a new project every once in a while to remind myself how much I dislike sewing, and someday (who knows?) something might click.
In any case, trying to sew quilt blocks for one of my friends was what I did Friday to help prepare me to deal with any mistakes I should make at the tournament Saturday. I worked off any frustration I had accumulated sewing by throwing and catching footballs with my sister and brother until it was so dark outside we could hardly see the ball. Then I came inside to get the directions and realized just how much time I had spent throwing. I could hardly hold a pen; my muscles were so worn that my hand was incredibly shakkkky. I did manage to scrawl out the directions in the most terrible handwriting I've had in ages.
|My handwriting after throwing footballs|
|My normal handwriting|
The second game, I played Kevin Hyde. I came out of the opening even and towards the end of the mid-game, I had a significant advantage. Then Mr. Hyde sacced his rook for a bishop. I noticed that if I took the rook, my king would become exposed; but I didn't see mate. If I had ignored the rook sacrifice and played on, I still would have had a material advantage, but greed came into play and I made my 1 bad move. I took the rook and was shocked by a quick and efficient check mate in 2.
While we waited for the next round, my sister, an elementary student, Richard Rector (I've had some great games with him in previous tournaments), and I had fun playing bughouse. Way too soon, pairings for round 3 were posted! ( I needed to remind myself, I was there for the tournament, not to play bughouse). I was "de-moted" to board 4 for my loss. My opponent was Mr. Higgins, and we had a pretty good game which I eventually won.
While I waited for the next round, I read from my book a little more, had a few interesting conversations with chess players and chess parents, and (guess what?) played more bughouse!
The next round, I found myself back on board 2. My next game, against Robert Vance, was extremely challenging. When we reached the endgame, I had a rook to his bishop and 1 more pawn, but he held me off in the endgame for a long time. It finally payed to have the extra pawn though, and I finished the tournament with 3 wins/1 loss.
While Papa's game was being finished, my sister and I got a bit of exercise taking walks up and down the halls and watching the games downstairs. Downstairs in the Open section everyone was as quiet as church mice, but to my surprise there were some players wearing earplugs. I guess they didn't want to take any chances of being distracted.
I finished in a tie for 3rd with 3 other people in the Reserve section. Congratulations to the winners, Xin Lu Huang and Kevin Hyde, and many thanks to the tournament directors and all of the players and parents of players who made the tournament (and the in-between-rounds bughouse games) so fun!
|Three final round games in the Reserve section|
My good (decent) move to bad move ratio (145 to 1) at the chess tournament is much better than my good stitch/bad stitch ratio, but where oh where is perfection?