From Sleeping to speeding; my chess has been pretty intense with a lot of great games and more effort then normal in getting some of the critical moves right and working through my calculation weaknesses.
But Recently, what’s really started to bother me is the blunders and oversights to the game…. When I mention this to some people they immediately become kind of defensive about it; and I can tell that it is more THEM than I – that they are thinking about. Nonetheless their will usually throw out the idea that “blunders are part of the game”. I don’t like this sentiment. Lets me argue against it….
- “Blunders are part of the Game…” yes, they are! But that doesn’t make them a very GOOD part of the game. Making a mistake that the opponent can immediately use to gain material or a mate; means you didn’t think through your move carefully enough. ITS embarrassing! In what sport; do you routinely fail to do something that is easy even for a beginner??
- “Many moves are mistakes…” True. But a blunder Isn’t merely a Mistake, weakness, or error. A blunder is to GIVE the opponent an immediate opportunity to gain material, or a mating attack. A blunder means you didn’t carefully work out what the opponent could do to you.
- “Masters make blunders…” (HATE this one). Yes, but masters don’t become masters because they frequently give away their pawns and pieces. Instead masters only succumb to tactics when their opponent has nursed their positional advantages until ALL moves are Blunders and that , fundamentally is different… yes, VERY infrequently a master hangs a piece or misses a simple easy tactic. (exception do not disprove the rule).
- “Loose chess is More interesting”. I disagree. Just because two sides are careful doesn’t mean- awesome mind boogling combinations are out. In fact, if all the easy stuff has been seen and prevented what is left; are Truely chess ‘Puzzles’ where insight carry the day…. Often, where small weaknesses is properly exploited; and the chess board explodes with excitement. In other games; pieces dwindle down to the fine points of pawn position; and the game hinges upon the fine technique of handling pawn masses.
In all these cases- Technique, knowledge and strategy is tested, reinforced and becomes the critical difference between a win and a loss; rather than random oversight. Chess becomes a display of great skill instead of a dice throw.
SEMANTICS; Calling a poor move a blunder REALLY implies you knew better. And in most (of my) cases this is (unfortunately) very true. It I make a move that I could exploit with seconds of thoughts- I clearly am not being serious about the moves, themselves. While its true that I can get tired and frustrated, disappointed and overconfident; I have thoroughly explored the world of simple tactics. I’ve done many thousands of puzzles- some of which were complicated and that pretty rapidly- SO WHY Should I give my opponent such an easy shot of mastering
? In the WORLD of chess, you should demand that your opponent show real skill, to defeat your mighty king. In this regard; every error will need individually measured? me.
IN THE END, MOST of what it means to be GOOD AT CHESS means to be careful and aware of all the foreseeable consequences of ones move. NO BOOKS can give you that! It’s the most intangeable strength in the game.…. And there is NO higher compliment, then “wow! You saw Everything I didn’t have a chance!!”
PS…. I’ve blogged quite quickly after me last grab-bag post. I think it was GOOD to remind myself, that ultimately I need to enjoy My chess; and not get so obsessed in rating or winning as to eliminate my enjoyment of chess.
Some might feel that this Strongly worded post contradicts the spirit of the former post. Perhaps. But enjoying chess is clearly exists as much of a balance, just as is the task of improving in it.
If your not serious, involved and earnest in chess; the game becomes somewhat trivial. There’s a joy to the intensity that is difficult to explain to those that don’t obsess in it. On the other hand, pushing yourself into nearly professional rigour squeezes the sense of wonder, social enjoyment, and relaxation that the game could afford.
If you learn nothing else about me; you need to appreciate that I am intense person that really enjoys obsessing on things. I realized just a little while ago; that chess was a worthy subject for this inclination. I nearly need to remind myself to have patience and acceptance about my limitations.