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Anyone here a competitive gamer? Chess, Go, Poker, Gin, Backgammon, Scrabble, etc...


Searching for the Lost Chord
Watching Queen's Gambit on Netflix has made me a bit nostalgic for my younger days when I was quite serious about playing Go and Poker. It also made me realize how many musically-oriented people I've known who are also avid Chess and/or Go players - I think there's probably some kind of correlation to be made there about how our brains work.

Go is my absolute favorite game of all time. Its sheer simplicity coupled with endless complexity offers unfathomable depth and a lifetime of exploration. I dove into it quite deeply - reading books, studying famous games, and playing regularly at a local Go club. In spite of all my dedication, I was never very good, peaking at about 4 kyu. But that never affected my love for the game. Nowadays, my skills and knowledge have largely evaporated - I've forgotten so much. Occasionally, I'll fire up a Go app on my iPad and get soundly trounced by a weak AI that I could've easily beaten 20 years ago. It's a little frustrating, but I still love the game :geek:

As for Poker... living in California where Poker cardrooms are legal, enabled me to spend about 3-4 nights a week playing for serious money while I was in college and for several years after I graduated. This was before the internet, so live poker was the only way to play. I still frequent cardrooms on occasion (before COVID), and I'm probably a better player now than I was back then, but I got spoiled by the faster pace of internet poker. I find live poker to be painfully slow-moving nowadays, and it's hard for me to spend hours sitting a table where the majority of my time is spent watching other people play out there hands and the dealer do all his dealer stuff.

I have a friend who is a professional Backgammon player, and another friend - a brilliant professional musician/composer, who is also a Chess master. And my aunt is Scrabble fanatic, playing in multiple tournaments every year.

Anyway, like I said, watching Queen's Gambit got me thinking about all this stuff, and so it got me wondering how many on this forum are serious game players. And by "serious" I mean playing competitively either for money or in public clubs and/or tournaments.

Tell us about it!


Active Member

I am a Go player too - the only game that fascinated me so much that I still play it, much less now in Corona time. I'm down to 3k from 1k, but that does not matter. It is so much fun! The AIs are awesome now, beating all the pros easily, and two of them are free to use.

My tournament times are over, I guess, my weekends are to prcious to spend sitting in a sticky, crowded place for hours. But when Corona is over, I'll certainly go to our weekly meetings.

Sometimes we play Doppelkopf in the family, but that's it.


New Member
Are there still chess games held in LA somewhere whether casual or pro? I once passed by some beaches in California during pre-covid, in fact years ago, where numerous people would be playing the game along the coast ...


Active Member
I don't play chess because I know that's a game you would need to really study and work hard to get good at. And I simply don't have (don't take the) time for it.

But when I fall into the YT rabbit's hole, I can spend a huuge amount of time watching games, game analysis or masterclasses from Ben Finegold and the likes. Love it.
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