Thursday, October 29, 2009

Quick Update

Dear Readers,
I have been on a roll tonight! I'm not sure whether it's my beret, my yellow jacket, my rolled-up jeans, or my multi-colored socks, but I must be wearing some article of clothing that is acting as a sort of chess talisman. Perhaps I have a new uniform? Although nothing beats playing chess in one's jammies from the comfort of one's own home. Well, it could just be in the air tonight...but I've been patting myself on the back for many chess games well-played. I hope I didn't just jinx myself!
Love ya,
Torero

Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Chess Man!

Well, I was going to put something in the title about cats, but it sounds way cooler to put chess. I mean, this is a chess blog. But the reason I bring up cats is that I'd like to find a way to teach a cat to play chess. Maybe I'm talking out of my head here, but sometimes I get a hankering for a good 3-dimensional chess game and I need an opponent. I could play against myself but that seems a little odd. I'll give it a try and report back. I was just kidding about the cats, by the way. Everyone knows only dogs can learn complicated logical thinking processes. Just kidding. Monkeys. Or dolphins. No, definitely monkeys. Then I could make them wear funny hats. Or distract them with bananas.

Good News!

Attention, loyal blog reader! I have, by request, enabled anonymous comments on all posts. Please be mindful that this should not be considered free rein to unleash malice. Not that you would. But you could. ;) I hope you're all doing well out there in blogland, and I apologize for the light posting lately. I've been playing intermittently with mixed results. Sometimes, however, homework and other duties take precedence over online chess. But small consolation, I've added a fun footer to the blog, so scroll away and let me know what you think. But only if it's good. :) Feel free to post chess tips, if you've got good ones! XO, Torero

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Life-Size!

If I ever have enough money to buy a mansion, I think I will forego the tennis court and swimming pool and put in a life-size chess board. I've never had the privilege of playing on a life-size chess board, but I imagine it would be pretty awesome!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Chess and Weddings...or just chess?

I am lucky enough to say, that despite my voracious appetite for online chess, I have managed to hang onto my dear, sweet fiancee, who is very beautiful. Unfortunately, she won't stop talking about weddings! And she does it even when I'm trying to play! With headphones on! Women! Anyway, one of the only ways I think the wedding could become an accurate reflection of our lives is if it incorporated my love of online chess. My two loves, in one spot. Can I bring my laptop to the wedding? Honeymoon? You could really chess up a wedding, you know. Look at this awesome invitation from Wedding Paper Divas--I think I might try to persuade old A. to agree to a chess-themed event. I mean, what's not to love? Wow, enough wedding blabber...I'm headed to the old chess website, chess.com!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Reality

You know, what with all the reality shows out there, I'm just waiting to see how long it takes to make a chess reality show. Have they already made one? I don't watch a lot of TV, but I think I would have heard of it. I'm not sure it would appeal to everyone...but I'd sure be watching, to see what I can learn. Well, that's my random thought of the day!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Concentration

Well, anyone who's played chess can agree, the game requires a lot of concentration! Focus is the name of the game. Now, it might seem silly...but I think we all have ways of helping ourselves focus. We might not be aware of them. You know people who jiggle their legs while studying or chew gum while working...well, here's my quirky chess concentration thing: I hold my forearm in front of my nose while I play and stick the teeny-tiny hairs in my nostrils. I don't even know I'm doing it half the time! And I do it while driving, too. (Don't worry, one of my hands is on the wheel--and my arm hairs aren't so deeply entrenched within my nose that they can't be called upon to seize the steering wheel when necessary). It might appear crazy to onlookers, but guess what? It helps me focus. And in chess, players need all the edge focus provides. =:{) (this is an emoticon trying to depict a smiley putting his or her arm hairs in his or her nose). =:{)

Turndown

Well, it sure puts me in a good mood to sleep when I can turn in with a fresh victory. I think I'd keep myself up all night playing just to end on a good note. :)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pawnz

Every pawn is a potential Queen.
- Mason

A Passed Pawn increases in strength as the number of pieces on the board diminishes.
- Capablanca
_________________________________________________________________
Well, guess what? Pawns have been inspiring me recently. I think many chess players consider pawns expendable and don't give them much thought. The lowly pawn is a valuable piece in chess, but it is underappreciated. The pawn is the first line of tiny wooden/plastic/virtual chess pieces to go into metaphorical battle, and often the first piece sacrificed. But one little pawn advancing across the board can, with reference to the quotes I added above, redeem a lost piece of higher worth if it completes its journey. Pawns may be tiny and adorable, but they are stronger than we give them credit for. My playing has improved in light of my newfound veneration for the meek and humble pawn. Well, the pawn may be the "weakest and most abundant" chess piece (thanks, Wikipedia!) and his name may be derived from the word "peon," but skilled chess players understand that the pawn's movements can determine the game's trajectory from the very first move! Perhaps you are playing on a chess board in which some of the pawns have been lost, like a certain someone I know who uses correction fluid bottles in place of a few pawns who've gone astray somewhere and at some time unknown. Well, regardless of what you're using to play your chess, please, for the sake of your game, be mindful of the pawn.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Photographic Inspiration

Such an inspiring image of all the chess pieces lined up ready to play. I particu- larly enjoy the beginning of every game, because it has potential to become what you make it. Hmm, perhaps chess is rather postmodern in that sense? And for a game with such old roots, it still has relevance today. In fact, it's my opinion that more people should play chess, as it's such a great mental workout.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

On a winning streak!

Well, I have been on a winning streak lately (save a particularly distasteful loss last night). My score is up and I've been doing well! Here's hoping this trend continues!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Follow me...

Chesscapades is now on Twitter! Follow me @chesscapades
~Torero

Cogs and Machines

Okay, we're cogs in the great machine of life, but we're still humans. And that brings me to something I've been thinking about lately. I really can't stand playing computer chess against the computer. There's got to be a person on the other side of the screen somewhere for me to really feel challenged. I'm sure everyone's got their own opinions and preferences on this matter, but it feels so much better to engage in a chess game with a person instead of a machine. Hmm...perhaps it is just reassuring that there are other people out there who enjoy online chess as much as I do?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Nothing like it!

I just wanted to add a quick post before I get going for the day. My online chess day has already started! There is really nothing like a morning online chess victory to get me going! It really lifts the spirits!! I WON!

Monday, October 12, 2009

This is your brain...on chess

Chess is just one facet of my multi-faceted plan to head off Alzheimer's or another similar disease in the future. The blimits of my plan haven't been fully worked out yet, but suffice it so say that playing chess keeps one's brain young. I also take fish oil supplements every morning, and try to eat as much brain food as possible, including blueberries, fish, and a variety of vegetables. It's important to stay healthy mentally, and chess is definitely a great way to enjoy yourself while doing it! So, grab a bowl of blueberries topped with ground flax, and roll up your computer chair, and play a round of online chess. Your brain will thank you later!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

On a roll

I often find that the first game of my online chess day is a harbinger of the trend of the day. If I lose, then I'm probably going to keep losing. If I win, well, I am on a roll, baby! Ain't nothin gonna stop this train to victory! Hey, I might not be able to take a shower or make it to class on time, but woo, am I doing good! The only problem is that sometimes, I keep playing after I lose once, and my score plummets. :( You'd think I would have learned by now...and I do want to keep my score at the top...but sometimes I just can't tear myself away from the keyboard and monitor (with CPU, of course!) regardless of how many times I lose. Am I just trying to prove I can win if I keep playing long enough? Probably. Well, there's a peek into the inner thoughts of your neighborhood online chess aficionado. TTFN, y'all!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Welcome to my blog

Hi,
I'm Torero, a 20-something online chess player. I do play 3-d chess from time to time, but the extra dimensions throw me off! I'm on my way to Chessmaster, I hope, so check on in from time to time to see how it's going. And maybe I'll even play chess online with you one day?
~Torero