". . . little shall I grace my cause

In speaking for myself. Yet, by your gracious patience,

I will a round unvarnish'd tale deliver . . ."

(William Shakespeare's Othello, I.iii.88-90)

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Denker, Round 2

The morning report from my husband, chaperoning our son in Indianapolis.

The second round of the Denker National Tournament of High School Champions is up and running. There was more than the usual excitement when the pairings (the listing of who is to play whom) were posted this morning. My mind was taken back to when Trevor use to play in scholastic tournaments and how excitement filled the room as the joyful report filled the air: "Pairings are up!"

Trevor is playing Spencer Bledsoe of Georgia this morning. Spencer is a stronger player than Trevor's opponent last night, a high "Grade A" player with a rating of 1962. Trevor has moved up from 10th to 9th position; Spencer is in 18th by virtue of having won his first game. With this pairing, Trevor may have dodged a bullet: the top-rated player in the tournament, Jeffrey Haskell of Floida, drew (tied) his first board last night and so dropped from 1st to 19th place. Because the "fold" right now has players 1-9 playing 10-18, and the 19th position playing down, slight changes in how the other games went could have resulted in either Trevor having to play Haskell this round or being paired up against the current gentleman on the first board: Robert Lau of Hawaii. But, of course, if Trevor continues to win, he will have to play one--or both--of these dynamos before tournament's end. Indeed, looking at the current standings, it seems likely that he'll have to mix it up with Lau tonight.

On a personal note, it was a morning to savor. We slept loud and long, having gotten to bed relatively early due to Trevor's quick win last night. This is unusual, because Trevor is a methodical player who usually prevails over his opponents three "yards" at a time. So it was great to have an alarm-clock-free morning. We went out for breakfast, taking a chance on the Waffle House nearby and being very pleasantly surprised. (I had stopped going to WH due to a couple of bad exepriences, but this one was like the WH's of my youth: clean, friendly, fast, and good.) The only drawback was Trevor's infamous "tournament tummy," which kept him away from the bacon. His stomach seems to be the way his body expresses his anxieties, and so Coach here will need to make sure that we get him on a schedule--and diet--that is as close to his home routine as possible. Fortunately, we secured a room at an Extended Stay hotel, and so have a large fridge, range, dishes, pots, utensils, and cutlery. So, we'll be off to the grocery store later so that we can have comfort food in our room for dinner tonight.

Meanwhile, for me and the rest of the chess parents, it's the "world wide wait" as the players' clocks tick away . . . .

Stay tuned for more updates!

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