When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade

Hi All,

The pandemic has given me time to work on improvements to our club. The movements inherent in duplicate bridge are designed to allow us to all play the same boards and be scored in comparison to other pairs playing the same boards. Unfortunately, there are many situations where we cannot play all the tables or all the boards. If we have more tables than rounds we can't get to all the tables, but it would be nice if we all played the same boards. For example, 11 tables with 9 rounds doesn't meet either parameter. We all miss two other pairs as well as two sets of boards.

To address these shortcomings, the bridge community has come up with special movements which allow all pairs to play all the same boards. These are very clever, but most clubs have resisted using them because they require two or three duplicate sets of boards. This was difficult to do before the advent of computer controlled dealing machines. It also requires new guides and a lot of preparation time.

Our club has multiple sets of boards and the dealing machines. Sitting at home with little to do has given me the time to think this through and do the necessary work. It has worked out best for Monday. When we reopen, we will all be able to play the same 18 boards with any number of tables. There will be no Skips or Share and Relays. It will be a little more complicated, but our trusty guides and Bridgemates will get us to the right place to play the right boards.

Thursday is similar in that we will all play the same boards with any number of tables and there will be no skips. However, we will still require the Share and Relay for 8 and 12 tables and we will variously play 24, 26, 27 or 28 boards. The new special movements will greatly improve 10, 11 14, 15 and 16 tables.

If anyone has any other suggestions to make the club still better, be sure to let me know.

I hope you're all well and that I will see you soon,


Stay at Home Bridge

Hi All,

I hope you're all well. We're doing fine here, doing stuff we'd been putting off. When I get tired of cleaning and organizing, I play hands on my Bridge Baron game. I've decided to focus my practice on the most important things.

In the good old days the best part of my game was the ability to remember almost everything. I could keep track of the cards played in each suit and the points played by each opponent. I could usually tell if a card was good or figure out which opponent must have a missing King. As I've played less and my memory gets fuzzier, I have to really concentrate and still throw away tricks when my memory fails.

I have resolved to get the most out of my practice hands by carefully counting each card and each point until it starts to be a habit again. I can't think of anything that would help my game more. If you think you don't need practice, test yourself by playing a hand and then trying to reconstruct what each opponent held. Anyway, that's how I'm spending my spring break. Try it! You'll like it.

I can hardly wait to see you all again.  Dave