Are You Working Today?

Perhaps you are working today, I am. I know when I worked for the federal government we had these national holidays where people got paid for doing nothing at their job. Did families stay together by having the day off? Apparently, not because the divorce rate is still higher than Ben Franklin’s kite. Then it got moved near a weekend so people could have 3-4 days in a row off. Not a bad idea, right?

My wife at that time had so many days off working for the city that she kept getting further and further behind in getting her work done but the city didn’t want to pay a little extra for help. She had to retire before they found a way to rework things.

Good ole Chris didn’t discover what we now know as the US, it was closer to something we now call the Bahamas. And he made 4 voyages in some small boats.
Now as I understand it, a couple states want to drop Columbus Day and replace it with Indigenous Peoples Day, another crock from those who have nothing better to do. There are many, many “Indian” tribes. There was suspicion that maybe the Chinese were here and we know some Norsemen made it here but it is those guys that work on Madison avenue who are always dreaming this stuff up and inciting the public to demand this or that. Why not demand lazy people get to work? Good luck with that!

For years I have resisted the temptation to have Special Holiday sales. Heck I really don’t even like discount sales because it’s a lot of extra work and in the chess business just keeping up with the latest books is a yeoman-like project. Most of these “holidays” should go extinct after one year and NEW ones thought up! If you think that is impossible, you should see the list I saw last week! 365 days of junk. There are holidays for some of the most unbelievable things you ever heard of! Can’t find that book right now and some of you must know there is a National Chess Holiday! How has that worked out?

A Relaxation Holiday

I would like to have a RELAXATION holiday. Where we have a BUY A RECLINER holiday and sit in your LA-Z-BOY RECLINER and where you can relax, sleep, or read through any kind of a book, even a chess book! This should be celebrated with a Holiday for your best friend Holiday.
I can’t resist looking at books and the latest one I am “drooling” over is John Shaw’s THE KING’S GAMBIT! published by Quality Chess. I have two left. And instead of Indigenous Whatever or Columbus Day, I proclaim today as King’s Gambit Holiday! You can get the book for $19.95 (instead of $29.95) + $5 for S&H (It’s a heavy book with 680 packed pages!!

In a few minutes I will be right back from the Grocery Store, where it is Load up Your Grocery Cart Holiday. I have to walk there with my “Green Bag.” I will have one more SALE for you. It’s a beaut!

JACKSON SUNDOWN and FLETCHER were black cowboys.

Their skill level at bronco busting was truly outstanding. In fact there were some great riders in those days no matter their nationality. Some were in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Shows. The Spain brothers were also amazing but in one event Fletcher was “aced out” of a silver saddle. The contest was tough and eventually the judges awarded the prize to one of the Spains, much to the crowd’s extreme disappointment. They thought the Ethiopian was the crowd’s champion and so to prevent a riot the Sheriff cut up his own hat into pieces and sold the pieces for $5 each. In total $700 was raised and given to Fletcher! It was twice the value of the Silver saddle! Remarkable! The crowd felt Fletcher deserved the title of World Saddle Bronc Champion. Heady stuff in those days. And just in case you were wondering, Bertha Blanchett was a Champion Lady Bronco Buster in the 1911 Pendleton (OR) Roundup. Chess was never that hard! Spirited times.

Well, I want to goose the times of my recent Gambit books roundup. It didn’t do anywhere near as well as I had hoped. Maybe the discounts on their very good books weren’t quite as good as the discounts on the QualityChess Books (the party time is over Oct. 12th to continue to get those 33% discounts!)

So…. I am going to discount a few Gambit books at 33% just like the Sheriff did for Fletcher to just make sure everyone had a great time.

Here you go:

Fundamental Checkmates by Gude. Take a look at pg. 189 and the game Denker vs. Gonzalez, 1945. Black’s Q-side pieces haven’t moved. Arnold finds a neat way to checkmate Black. Arnie was a great player despite the screw job he took in 1942 when Stephens declared him the loser against Reshevsky  by mistakenly insisting he never made mistakes in declaring winners (he did). This $29.95 book we will sell you for  $19.95.

Understanding Rook Endgames by Karsten Müller and Yakov Konoval. Never be afraid of going into a Rook ending again! Few pieces on the board? Don’t let that fool you mate. Nearly 300 pages of spicy positions. $29.95 for just $19.95.

I have a couple of Sergey Kasparov’s Understanding the Scandinavian. The thought is, when the Q on d5 is attacked that Black’s best move is 3…Qd6. These days there are quite a few books on the Scandinavian. GMs Glenn Flear in the New in Chess Yearbook likes this one and I believe he has reviewed all the others. Certainly the prose is clear and easy to read. While it retails for measly $23.50, the S-T-R-E-T-C-H Discount of 33% brings it down to an extraordinary palatable $15.75.

Lastly but not leastly is one of GM John Nunn’s Magnum Opus’ book on Lasker (the Lasker, Emanuel) John Nunn’s Chess Course. Wow! Nunn too believes Lasker was way ahead of his time (as does Andy Soltis). They both have PhDs in mathematics. Lasker was a superb master in two other chess fields: the middle game (strategy and tactics), and the endgame. Lasker was praised a lot in his day and by grandmaster like Tal and Kortchnoi today. He was a masterful tactician, something most of us are not! Another woefully underpriced book at $24.95 you can get yours at $16.75. If you get three of these just add $4 for S&H. A real bargain!

As to the cowboy information, I took it from the magazine (which I highly, highly recommend) called Cowboys & Indians, Oct. 2016. $6.99. I read every issue, almost completely.



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