It took a game without a prearranged partner to derail my upward trajectory for the start of 2017.
Eva Posener, a lovely octogenarian who will tell you herself that she’s the weakest player in almost any room she enters, was pulled away from her usual role as kibitzer to her partner, Ted Kahn, to play with me on Monday, Jan. 9. It was something of a miracle that we finished over 50%.
Nevertheless, the trendline clearly had topped out and it’s been a bumpy ride ever since. But not an unproductive one, point-wise. Here’s the recap:
Monday, Jan. 9, with Eva Posener. 51.42%, fourth in B strat overall, 0.62 of a point.
Tuesday, Jan. 10, with Pawan Matta. 46.25%. The downturn is real. No points.
Wednesday, Jan. 11, with Marilyn Sultz. 54% in a three-table game. A dead cat bounce? Second in B. 0.95 of a point.
Thursday, Jan. 12, with Marietta Kalman. 59.58%, bouncing still higher with the best game of the year so far. Second in A, first in B. We get our names in the paper along with 1.90 points.
Friday, Jan. 13, with Selina Volpatti at the Niagara Bridge Centre in St. Catharines, Ont. 52.53%, sixth in A, third in B in a 15½ table game. 0.44 of a point. No bonus points here.
Saturday, Jan. 14, with no partner, assigned to play with Denise Slattery. Slid in with 46.82%, but still third in B and second in C (Denise has hardly any points). 1.09 master points.
Monday, Jan. 16, no partner and unable to play both Martin Luther King Day games at the Airport Bridge Club. New orders at The Buffalo News oblige me to start my shift as night rewrite man at 4 p.m. instead of 5 p.m. Assigned to play the morning session with Joe Rooney, we had a safe and sane game. 51.37%. Third in A, second in B in our direction. Fourth in B overall. 0.91 of a master point.
Tuesday, Jan. 17, last game with Barbara Sadkin before she goes into the Cleveland Clinic for colon surgery and it’s a good send-off. 54.17%. She’s declarer in something like a dozen hands. I’m declarer just twice. Third in A North-South, fifth in A overall. 0.83 of a point.
Wednesday, Jan. 18, Marilyn Sultz and I are the best of the gang of people bunched up in the second tier, well behind the leading group. 48.61%, fourth in A, third in B. 0.92 of a point.
Thursday, Jan. 19, no partner (Barbara Sadkin canceled), so Pawan Matta came in as a sub. A joy to play with her, but results are just about as poor as last week. 47.81%. Once again, no points.
Unspectacular, to be sure, but points seem to be accumulating incrementally anyway – 9.40 at the Airport Bridge Club, 0.75 in St. Catharines. Eleven days to go and I’ve hit double digits.