In his trademark relaxed, conversational style, and bursting with homely but instructive anecdotes, GSJB offered many interesting insights into the best mental approach to the game, occasionally aided by his wife, Karen, his colleague Tiger Li Li, and at one time completely upstaged by the beautiful Anna, his Seizure Response Dog. It was clear that his advice struck many a chord with the assembled listeners as there was much laughter and enough head-nodding to give Anna pause (or should that be «paws»?) for consideration.
Mostly, he enjoined us all not to be intimidated by any opposition and to dismantle the mystique from around the so-called good players. He cited an example of a team with 360 masterpoints IN ALL (and 321 of THEM belonged to one player!), which beat the Meckstroth team by 7 IMPS because they didn’t know enough to be afraid of the pantheon of gods in the opposition. «There is nothing an expert can do that a novice can’t,» he insisted. «The only difference is in the greater amount of practice that one might have over the other.»
He pointed out that every loss could be an investment in your game going forward IF you spend time analysing the game and examining your play. Good partnerships never recriminate or assign blame, but accept losses as part of the process of the game, and partnerships grow best when focussing positively, especially in these worst of circumstances.
Particularly interesting was his advice on instinct: when faced with a gut decision, try thinking about all the reasons why a play could be right instead of second-guessing yourself and surrendering to all the reasons it could be wrong – in other words, think about not thinking about it!
While we were digesting this gem from Jade, Anna padded placidly in, and all talk of bridge quickly degenerated into a doggone love fest!
Amid the dog fight for Anna’s attention that ensued, GSJB had just enough time to remind us that, along with his Kansas City Chief pal Sherrill Hedrick, he was once voted the Player Most Likely to Make Bridge a Contact Sport, and perhaps this is why he wants you to go to [ilink url=»http://csbnews.org/?lang=en»]csbnews.org [/ilink] and find [ilink url=»http://csbnews.org/category/the-bridge-road-warriors-2/?lang=en»]The Bridge Road Warriors[/ilink]