Monday, April 12, 2010


I'm a fan of the number 113.  First of all, it's a prime number and all primes are just a little bit special.  Second, it's the denominator of one of the better approximations to pi: 355/113 which is remarkably close (and a whole lot better than 22/7).

So, I was moderately pleased to get 113 victory points in yesterday's flight B Swiss at Watertown, with teammates Jan, Steve and Leo.  I think this is the highest total I've had for an 8-round Swiss.  The only fly in the ointment, as it were, was the fact that another team got 125 vps!  Under the (very) old rules, I think we might have won the event: each team had 7 wins, but we beat them when we played head-to-head.

But we had a lot of fun at our table.  The cards were definitely running our way (the flip-side was that our teammates were generally on defense most of the day).  At our table, we played 33 out of the 56 boards (there were no passouts).  On those 33 hands, of which no fewer than 23 were game contracts, we won 62 imps (approximately 2 imps per board).  When we defended, we won 31 imps (approximately 1.5 imps per board).

The one area that we didn't do so well, as a team, was in bidding slams.  Our teammates missed two slams, while we also missed two our way (though we also bid and made two) and played what should have been a grand slam as a small slam.  These five hands contributed a net loss of 13 imps, but if we'd all really been on the ball, would have given us 49 imps in our direction!  But neither of our pairs is a really established partnership and I think slam bidding is an area where being really in tune with each other is very important.

All in all, a satisfying and very pleasant day.  Perhaps it's time to take a ride up to Dunstable and check out those two magnificent copper beeches... along Route 113.

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