Chess championship
November 24, 2004 12:01 PM   Subscribe

If chess is the game of kings... The 2005 U.S. Chessmaster Championships are being held right now, in 2004, here in San Diego. When you have tons of money and a lifelong passion, like Erik Anderson, you can do things like prevent the tourney's demise. Keep your eyes on Hikaru Nakamura and Gata Kamsky, and ask yourself what Garry Kasparov will be doing this weekend. Deep Blue's press secretary told me that he will not attend, but I plan to stop by with my Ivan II, The Conqueror. And if I can't get in, I'll just stay home and read a book, watch a movie or do my damnedest to get my kicks above the waistline, sunshine. (First one is Swedish, last one's a midi.)
posted by mathowie (17 comments total)
posted for gramschmidt
posted by mathowie at 12:03 PM on November 24, 2004

Thanks again, Matt.
posted by gramschmidt at 12:09 PM on November 24, 2004

Ahh, Chess the that's my style. If you've seen Chess in the United States within the past year, chances are good that I was involved in the production; the third linked page is mine.
posted by graymouser at 12:10 PM on November 24, 2004

Great post!
posted by greasy_skillet at 12:20 PM on November 24, 2004

Hatley High was playing on my flight a couple of days ago. It was like a classic football highschool movie, except replace the football with chess. It was pretty fun, and Canadian to boot.
posted by helvetica at 12:35 PM on November 24, 2004

I'm not a huge chess player (don't have the concentration spans required) but seeing Mikhail Tal (the magician from Riga) mentioned there, reminded me that he was famously a member of the Boris Spassky camp - in the famous series against Bobby Fischer. Recently documented really well in Bobby goes to War.

Fascinating read....even for non-chess lovers.
posted by mattr at 1:21 PM on November 24, 2004

I wish more chess matches were televised.
posted by swift at 1:27 PM on November 24, 2004

User 17928

And matt gave you a post.... and not just a post a 15 link post, who is this man/woman/shim.
posted by sourbrew at 1:41 PM on November 24, 2004

Ah, I love Chess: The Musical. Lyrics by Tim Rice, music by the guys of ABBA. What more could you ask for?

Also The Eight is a fiction book involving chess that is experiencing renewed popularity due to the Davinci Code.
posted by ..ooOOoo....ooOOoo.. at 2:23 PM on November 24, 2004

Let us not ignore nor forget this great American:
posted by Postroad at 2:58 PM on November 24, 2004

I don't think I'll ever need to know anything about chess ever again. It's pretty much all there. And I'm going to agree that Chess (the musical) is pretty crazy. That "One Night In Bangkok" or whatever... that's good stuff. Funny, but good, somehow.

This "mathowie" seems pretty much in-tune with posting to Metafilter.
posted by Kleptophoria! at 6:48 PM on November 24, 2004

I can't play chess, so I collect chess computers...
posted by krisjohn at 8:45 PM on November 24, 2004

Anybody know why this tournament separates women from men (at least in terms of awards, and so, I assume, also in competition)?

I'm guessing the difference in the top male/female prizes is based on simple demographics: a smaller pool of female chess champions from which to select for invitation.

But there's no ladies' tee here and there's nothing particularly manly about queening a pawn, so why the separation by gender? And all the clever little witticisms that could answer that question aside, is it possible that there's something just a little hypocritical about player associations flatly assuming that men are better at chess than women and then arranging the tournament so that it's impossible for any female chess master to prove the assumption wrong?

Or am I just getting all paranoid and conspiracy theorist-ish over a dumb ol' game?
posted by Bixby23 at 9:03 PM on November 24, 2004

Women have always, on average, had lower chess ratings than men. The reasons are debatable, but this is the case. There has never been a world champion who was female.

So should men and women compete together? It is said that chess is a sport, and most sports do separate men and women.

In any case, my understanding is that women are usually free to enter the 'main' category, or compete separately if they wish.
posted by kevinsp8 at 12:40 AM on November 25, 2004

The men and women are competing together in the tournament. In fact, Anna Zatonskih just beat the current U.S. champion, Alex Shabalov in the first round. There's just a separate title for the women because based on ratings, none of the women have a realistic chance of winning the overall title.

What kevinsp8 says is true. The only women that can compete against the best male players is Judit Polgar.
posted by gyc at 11:28 AM on November 25, 2004

It's great to see over the board chess attracting so much interest.

The problem remains that very few people really know how to play the game and I suggest that the US Chess Federation's website is a good place to start.
posted by notmtwain at 2:14 PM on November 26, 2004

I skipped work one day and challenged Garry Kasparov to a game of checkers. He declined with much disapproval, so I went and played basketballed with the Harlem Globetrotters.
True story.
posted by hellbient at 6:11 PM on November 27, 2004

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