“Am I going to see your name in the paper this week?” my golf buddy Richard Hummert, a non-bridge player, rasps into the phone Thursday night. Maybe, I tell him. I wasn’t sure. I was away in Syracuse half the week.
But then as I assemble the Saturday duplicate bridge column, I see it – that tie for second place in the game last Sunday at the Airport Bridge Club. I’m there.
Of course, having a byline, my name has gotten in the paper a lot over the years – again this week atop a Page 1 story about the New York State Department of Health slapping sanctions on Dr. Corasanti, the boozed-up physician who killed a girl skateboarder with his BMW last year and then drove away.
But to some of the bridge players, it’s a way of letting their friends know they’re still alive and bidding. So my Wednesday partner Celine Murray was overjoyed when we finished first overall this past week. It’ll be my only appearance in the next list of scores, although points have been accumulating here and there anyway.
On Monday with Marilyn Sultz, a 51.11% game put us third in the B strat for .60 point, half of it red, since this week’s games are all North American Pairs qualifiers. No luck with Beverly Dale on Tuesday (42%) or Eva Schmidt on Thursday (45%), but my second collaboration with Marilyn Sultz on Friday was rewarded, even though it was only a 49.11% effort (tied for second in B in our direction, tied for fourth in B overall, .84 of a point, half of it red).
Eva Schmidt, undiscouraged by our lack of success of Thursday, agreed to play with me on Saturday (the forecast was for rain, so I figured it wouldn’t be much of a day for gardening or anything else). This was club manager Bill Finkelstein’s prize money pairs game, but our payoff was merely in more fractional points -- .95, half red, finishing fifth overall in a 13-pair Howell with 52.92%. With the month one-third gone, August isn’t making headlines, but it’s steady -- 7.10 points so far, 3.34 of them red, a fraction away from 100 Ace of Clubs points for the year.