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Subject: CCT4 Experiences

Author: William H Rogers

Date: 13:57:56 01/28/02


I had been looking forward to this tournement ever since they opened it up to
all players and had accepted me as a contestant. I thought it might be amusing
to let people know what I went through just before and during the games.
Friday night before the tournement I had come down with a bad case of the flu.
No matter, I made a fresh pot of coffee and set the coffee pot to come on at
5:30 am. Took some contact, asperin, nose drops and went to bed with all kinds
of nervious expections about the comming event. Hard to sleep when you are
excited.
5:30 Saturday morning: when the alarm went off, I almost died, I wasn't ready,
couldn't open my eyes not less think about chess. Got out of bed, washed my face
and drank 4 cups of coffee before the games started.
Logged on the the chess site using Blitzin and then got really scared. I was
told to issue the command +Ch 64, well I did and got an error message. Logged
off and back on again, still not a proper response. Finally found other
contestants on line and began to chat. They told me not to worry that I was in
the right place and just to be patient.
Then game started and I was pitted against a giant (at least in my opinion) the
famous PostModernist rated at 2504 points. I was supprised that I lasted 38
moves and another pot of coffee not counting a whole pack of cigarttes.
Then came game two. I was to to play and when my program calculated it move I
turned to my pc to enter. Clicked on Kings pawn and moved it forward two squares
, then I notice that I was suppost to move the queen's pawn. I cried for help as
I did not know what to do. I did not know at that time that I could have asked
for a take back so I hit the resign button. Really felt bad about that so I
starte on a second pack of smokes. O.K. I said he would have beaten me anyway,
so lets wait for the next game. The third game was against Nullmover and I
waited and waited and nothing happened, as he could not get on the net.
The first day was over, I had gone through two pots of coffee, one and one half
packs of cigaretts and a picture of iced tea. Collapsed on the couch and felt
greatly relieved. I was not that nervious even when I was expecting my first
child over 37 year ago. Ah well, tomorrow is another day.

Sunday 5:30 am: I actually woke up a little before the alarm went off, jumped
into the shower and drank only three cups of coffee before the games started.
Asked a lot of questions of those who were chatting on the site, and was given a
lot of encouragement. PolarChess issued a challenge and we were off. It was one
of my nices games, as I lasted 70 moves before I had enter a wrong move onto the
server, but it would not have mattered in any event as I only had a Rook and a
Pawn against a queen and a pawn. My clock showed that I only had one minute and
36 seconds to play and PolarChess had aroung 10 minutes or so. I resigned, it
was a lost game anyway. Then came Armageddon and that is just what I thought was
about to happen. It was a strong program, at least for me, It only took him 37
moves to checkmate me. The game went very fast. Logged of the net for a while to
rest my modem. Phone rang, my mother's life alert button had been pressed and I
was asked to go check on her before they sent an ambulance or someting. She was
fine so I took care of a few things for her and rushed home to log on the game
site once again. All of this stuff is only adding to the pressure that I was
experiencing with a bad head-ache and so forth.
Game three on Sunday, Pyotr. Well the author-operator of Pyotr was a real
gentleman and even though he was rated the lowest in the whole tournement he
gave it his best. He did have a small opening book, it lasted about 3 moves and
I thought he had a great advantage and indeed he did for the first 15 or so
moves, then my programs depth of search (only 6 plys against his 4 or 5 plys)
began to collect his major pieces. He finally resigned. I really want to give
him some credit thought, before that match began there were over 50 contestants
who had entered the tournement and then chickened out for some reason or
another. I had real compassion for Pyotr as I felt just like he did, we were
both underdogs at the bottom of the list.

By the following week end, I had felt much better about playing as someone else
appearentely was in charge and all of the games seem to start all by themselves.
I still do not know how to nagivate through the chess clubs net site, but I
think that it is becomming clearer.
All in all I had smoked a half a carton of cigaretts, drank 5 or 6 pots of
coffee, several pictures of iced tea and had a great time. I think I lost about
four pounds, got a really sore butt from sitting for all of those hours, but I
loved every minute of it. Now if I could only get a real fast laptop with an
internet connection next to my big recliner.....
Thanks to all of the players and to Volker and the rest of the group who made
the whole thing possible and to all who have never participated in such an event
my advice to you is GO FOR IT!
Bill



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