Thursday, June 10, 2010

Hello, Goodbye

Readers,
I have neglected this blog, as you can see. For that, I am very sorry. I have been busy, busy, busy (and you know there's online chess mixed in with all that)! But too busy, I fear, for the maintenance of the blog. I am thus announcing my intention to take an indefinite hiatus from blogging. I love you all and hope we meet on the cyber boards of Chess.com. I may be back in the future; I can't say. Best of luck to you all with your chess endeavors! Friend me on chess.com if you haven't already!
~Torero

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

To block or not to block...

That is the question I currently face.

Y'all, I spend so much dang time playing chess online that it's not funny. Don't get me wrong, I love it so much. But...I was thinking of blocking chess.com at home so I can only play it at the library. That way, I won't procrastinate on schoolwork and I can do more housework. I *know* I sound like a crazy right now, but it's just been on my mind!

:(

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Morning!

Good morning gentle readers,
I was watching Morning Joe as I got ready for work this morning, and they had a segment about the worst sports ever. Guess what! They featured Chess Boxing. Just saying...I told you first! LOL! I thought it was great! Zorbing (look it up) looks like fun!
Torero

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Yeah, yeah...you know I'm getting married...

But what if it could be like this? Really not much more to say than that...

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Got my own virtual doppelganger...

Guess who I played chess with today?
? ? ? ? ? ?
Someone named TOREROU!! With a U! I'm guessing they didn't claim "Torero" in time cause I got there first! He was from Spain and greeted me by saying "Hola, Clon." Guess who won?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Chessstravaganza!!

Hello darlings,
I have completed my courses for the semester and my work duties are currently on hiatus. Plus my fiancee's working a load of overtime this week. See where this equation's going? Lots of chess, all the time! See you on chess.com, maybe?
Torero
Ps. A link in honor of my (non-nerd) friends who had a baby!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Yes, this will be my new hobby.

Maybe this is what chess has been missing all along?

Thursday, April 1, 2010

BIG NEWS!!

Guess what, everybody!! I have been working so hard to build up my chess score and it's reached a new high of 1400!!! I wish. April Fool's...!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Oh my goodness!

Readers, I hate to admit it, but Yahoo! Answers is like my fiancee's online counterpart to my chess playing habit...I am speechless when things like this:

appear on there...I guess it's good for a laugh at least! I love that Chess is the only "boring" "sport" listed...along with "all that other geeky stuff." I'm guessing the asker means MMORPG's, and I don't know, Risk? Delightful.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

I must have this!


Y'all, it's $5 (plus shipping, here), I'm just saying. How awesome is this!! What what!

Link you may enjoy

Read it! A follow-up to the last post, sort of: here.

Because regular chess isn't complicated enough


There's this! Which I might consider playing!

Monday, March 22, 2010

I've missed you!

Y'all, get this. I was busy planning and working at a conference that occurred this past weekend that I've not had time to work on my chess lately! I took a LONG nap Sunday after the conference ended, then woke up and logged right in to chess.com. Alas, my prowess seems to be weakened...I'll play more but I tell you, one loss puts a bad taste in my mouth. :( Here's hoping things look up!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Why I play ONLINE chess

It's my opinion that the Internet is the best thing to happen to chess, especially for amateur players. I, like many chess hobbyists, don't always have a partner to play with. So I really like that other, partner-less chess players (from around the world!) can meet together and play chess. With chess.com, I always have an opponent! Except when the server's down. Which it was earlier today, for maintenance or something.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Not even about chess this time, sorry...

But hey, the posting material comes to me these days! Once you and your WoW girlfriend tie the knot and there's a little gamer on the way, what do you need? Click here to see! I found this on Regretsy, totally worth a read BTW. At least it's eco-friendly? LOL, ga ga.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

In case your game-dating works out...

Here's some helpful information about girls who play online games. Not the kind where they stalk you on Facebook, the good ones! Like Farmville (just kidding) and online chess!

PS. The comments are the best part!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Good iDea?

OMG, have you visited chess.com lately and actually looked at the home page? I usually rush to log in (duh!) but the "mobile chess" box on the front piqued my interest. I currently use a hand-me-down Razr, with no data capabilities...but with a chess application, the iPhone is looking a lot better to me these days! I could play chess on the go! While on hold with customer service! OMG in the bathroom!

Bonus feature for the MMORPGers in the audience--Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II are now available for the iPhone as well!

I've got the giggles!

Y'all, check out this hilarity! Here's a gentleperson facing a jail sentence, and wants to know how to pass the time. Of course, one answer is chess, obviously! (And "become a chess master!--in 90 days?)But here's what gets me laughing: the sixth commenter offers a list concluding with "pen-and-paper RPGs"! Since the thread's from 2006, the sentence has probably concluded by now...I'd like to know how it went! But in conclusion, as much as I have been an ambivalent critic/lover of MMORPG's, maybe it's time I embraced old-timey RPG's! I'll let you know how it goes!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Spotted!

Another chess sighting! Backstory is my fiancee watches reruns of Family Guy when I'm playing online chess. I happened to be watching with her the other day when I spotted a heated chess match between Stewie and Brian! Chess is everywhere, now why don't more people actually play?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

I knew there was a reason...

I like Vladimir Nabokov so much! First of all, he wrote my favorite book ever, the literary masterpiece Lolita, and now I have read that he was also a huge chess aficionado!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Tardy for the Party!

Y'all, so sorry I'm late! It was a snow day today so I basically played online chess like all day and lost track of time. Anyway, congratulations to contestant jchess13 who will receive a bottle of liquid correction fluid, perfect for holding the place of errant pieces during a heated round of 3-D chess. And thanks to everyone for entering, I hope to sponsor another contest soon!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Random Chess Sighting, this time, online!

I was looking at the different online chess sites tonight--don't get me wrong, I LOVE chess.com--just out of curiosity, when I saw that Nabisco (?) has a game section of their website, and one of the available games is chess! Pretty random, I thought! Well, I played a game, and let me tell you--the graphics are kind of awesome! It's a little more 3-D in style, so you feel more like you're at a chess board. You're playing with another person, but you can only chat with them using pre-selected messages like "oops!" "good job!" and "are you still there," among others. So I wouldn't say it's a great chess destination, I would say, if your work blocks chess.com, try the Nabisco version. Or if you want a chess game that matches, like, your Saltines and Ritz Crackers, go for it!

Last chance!

Lady and Gentleman Readers,
Please note that your time is running out to enter the inaugural giveaway here at Chesscapades. One bottle of liquid correction fluid could be yours. And I've decided to throw in a bonus surprise addition as well. Entries will be accepted until March 2nd, let's say, 11 pm. EST so I have time to post the winner before the day is officially over. Good luck to all entrants!
~Torero

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Lost your chessboard?



Here's a creative replacement! LOL...I got the pic here. (I edited it slightly for content)I was wondering about a board to go along with the hardware store chess pieces...also, check the link for directions to playing strip chess if you're into that...this body-chess situation could actually work out--your board could be your opponent if she could see over her endowments. I doubt you'd want to use a man for this, due to the chest hair issue. You could use a sleeping person's back, if they're one of those people who sleep really soundly and still. And don't have their shirt on. But you would need three people, because I highly doubt the ability of a sleeping person to play chess!

Who knew there was more to dating and WoW?

Apparently, there is...see? Right...anyway, this makes me wonder if ladies or gentlemen troll Chess.com for love interests among their opponents. I'm certainly not looking--and that's definitely not why I play chess. I'm there for the intellectual stimulation! I guess this is the online version of ladies who do their makeup before going to the gym in hopes of snagging a man? Hmm...

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Inaugural Giveaway!


Readers, I have decided to hold my first ever giveaway! I appreciate your loyal attention to my ramblings, and want to show my appreciation. But hurry while the goods are hot! One (1) winner will receive one (1) bottle of liquid correction fluid, good for holding the place of a chess piece that has gone missing (a tactic I learned from my fiancee's brother). To enter, send an email, with subject line "Inaugural Giveaway" to toreroplayschess@gmail.com, and put your name and mailing address as the contents. The giveaway is open for entries until March 2, when the winner will be randomly selected and announced on the blog! Good luck!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Loving the bookstore!

Y'all, this might sound super-lame or whatevs, but I hang out a LOT in Barnes & Noble. I just love to browse, sip brain-boosting green tea from Starbucks, and soak up the general bookiness that pervades the atmosphere. Anyhoo, they have in-store events sometimes and one of the things I noticed is they hold a chess club on Thursdays! I would like to go, but I'm afraid I'd be, like, the only adult and everyone else would be 12 and I'd feel like a loser. Then again, maybe I could beat them all and build up my self-esteem! I'm thinking about it...not committing yet though!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Soooooooooo Sorry!!!


I just thought this was so funny! (Albeit a little off-color, and I do regret that) Anyway, I'm sorry about my extended absence from the blog. It's nothing personal...I just think my computer has a virus or something, I need to take it to get fixed :( but enjoy this slice of hilarious I found earlier today! Love ya!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Happy Olympics Eve!

Readers,
It is the eve of the 2010 Olympic Games! As excited as I am to watch, I feel like participating would be fun, too! I mean, I'm not heading up to Vancouver or anything, but you can have your own *intellectual* at-home version of the Olympics, by playing the games listed here. Of course, chess is on there...as is another couch-potato-cum-intellectual-athlete favorite, sudoku! (I confess to playing a small amount of sudoku...although my fiancee enjoys it much more) I haven't played any of the other games on this list, but you know, I'm inspired to try! Happy playing!
~Torero

Monday, February 8, 2010

Chess Preparation

Readers,
This is the second (long overdue) installment in my series about how to succeed at chess. So, like, chess tips from me! Anyway, here is what I have to say. Everything is all interconnected and stuff, so your chess success is not solely based on the time you spend playing the game. I mean, practicing helps...but you can do things outside of playing that benefit your game. For example, you should probably drink some green tea, like two cups a day. And definitely take fish oil supplements. These two additions to your diet will enhance your mental fitness. Additionally, I recommend getting some exercise to get the blood circulating really well. Take care of your body and it will help your mind--ultimately enhancing your chess game! More wisdom to come...
~Torero

Brighten up your winter days!


Hi there! The winter doldrums have been getting to me lately, and there's not much I can do about it. But I found something that might just keep me occupied long enough to distract me! How about making your own chess set from nuts and bolts (which cost, like 10¢ each)? Here is a link for you! You can even go with a color scheme of brights, like turquoise, lime, and tangerine--perfect summery colors to brighten your day! There aren't instructions, but I think you could figure it out. Here is a little help. The chess set pictured was created by Julia Suits, whose flickr photostream provided the image. You can read how she came up with the idea--a wonderful example of chess inspiration! Chess-spiration! :)

The Olympics are coming!

This Friday, readers, the 2010 Olympics will officially begin! My awareness of this fact has been enhanced by the number and frequency of Olympics-themed TV commercials. I bring this up to draw your attention to the debate about whether chess should become part of the Olympics. I definitely think it should! Here is a link to a post from Alexandra Kosteniuk's blog in which she explains her position about the topic. Happy reading! :)

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Update!

I spoke in haste, reader. My score is now 1250! A great way to start the weekend!

Higher than ever!!!!

You GUYS!!!! Guess what? My score is at a new all-time high and I am no longer reticent to reveal it to y'all! 1241, baby! That's MCCXLI in Roman Numerals, y'all. That's right, I've been on a T-E-A-R through the virtual chess boards of Chess.com! Here I go again...

Tip-off to fun new blog reads!

During my virtual perambulations, I wandered across some fascinating blogs, "My Chess Pieces Blog," "hardcore pawnography," and "Lousy@Chess," and they're each worth a read! I thought I'd share with all y'all!
~Torero
P.S. I might start going by "Tor" for short.

MMORPGs & Dating (and online chess, of course!)

Readers,
You must go view this article! It's dating advice...from WoW players! Now, this is more MMORPG-oriented than chess-oriented...but I think some portions of the article are definitely apropos to my experience with online chess.

For example...

What has World of Warcraft taught you about dating?
A few polite words can go a long way. Also, people who spend a lot of time in front of the computer tend to have excellent imaginations — the brain is our most powerful sexual organ.

Titillating, I'm sure you agree! And I certainly acknowledge that online chess, too, is quite mentally stimulating--you'll have to ask my fiancee whether it has enhanced my appeal--also of note from the article is that the gamers interviewed suggested a little healthy [WoW] competition is beneficial for a relationship. Assuredly, chess competition would be beneficial as well! My case to convert my fiancee to a chess player is growing ever-stronger. If you already own a chess set, it's cheaper than couples therapy! Not that we need it, you know. But it certainly couldn't hurt!
Game on!
Torero

CHANGES

Readers,
I have tired of the incessant red-and-black look of the blog and have resultingly made some changes more to my taste. Also, I updated the font to give the blog a more computer chess theme.
<3,
Torero

CHECK *THIS* OUT!


This infographic (which I originally found on Geekologie.com, but apparently originated from Focus.com) offers a rich analysis of the state of the Internet today. (You can click the picture slightly to enlarge, and the link to see it full-sized) The information contained within is a valuable data set, if you ask me, and it has special relevance to my role as a blogger, a member of the blogosphere, as it were...I count myself among the 7% of bloggers ages 18-24, and as for my style, I would say the two adjectives(from their choices)that best describe me are "confessional" and "honest." Feel free to disagree, I guess...but I certainly wouldn't count myself as "journalistic," "expert," "snarky," or "humorous." Well, maybe a little of the last. I hope.

BY THE BY...

My chess.com score reached an all-time high the other day! I don't particularly care to say what it was (you can find out if you are on chess.com) but it was totally respectable, not deficient or anything. I just thought you should know.

SURNAMES

Hello Readers,
Suffice it to say, my surname is not related to chess or anything. In fact, this post has nothing to do with chess. But you know Benicio del Toro, right? What a totally awesome surname! I think I could adopt it to add some cachet to my chess pseudonym. My chesseudonym. Ha ha ha! Because I'm "Torero," get it? LOLZ!
Love ya,
Torero (del Toro)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

UPDATE!

Turns out, Torera is a word! And it means what I thought it did, a female matador. So unless it's been claimed, it's up for the taking (*looking at future wife knowingly*)!! Yeah...

Monday, February 1, 2010

FUN FACT!

Did you know..."Chesscapades" was my fiancee's idea? What a great idea! Of course, playing chess online all the time was my idea...but the blog was a stroke of genius on her part. Now maybe I'll convince her to take up the playing of the online chess. She could call herself Torera. If that's a word. Is that a word? IDK.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

WHAT TIME IS IT?


It's time for chess!!! Buy it here.

I NEED THIS!!!!!!


OH MY GOSH YOU GUYS!!! I got (by proxy) a Wii for Christmas (I love it!) and have been bowling and playing baseball ad nauseum!! I mean, I spend WAY less time on the Wii compared to online chess, but you know, sometimes I have to pay attention to my fiancee, who for *some* reason doesn't like to sit quietly and observe my chess genius. Anyhoo, this would be great! I could bring it with me and play with my future brother-in-law, who also enjoys both playing chess and playing Wii!!! :)
PS. My birthday's coming up...

SUMMER VACATION!

Readers,
If I could, I would go here: Castle Chess Camp. It's a week-long chess camp at Emory!! Wow! The only thing I need to do is get an official UCSF rating, have the time, and the $$ ($800 for a resident--who wouldn't want a chess-fanatic roomie experience??). Seriously, I want to do this! I hope my summer plans can accommodate the experience!!! *Keeping my fingers crossed*
<3,
Torero

IN CASE YOU WERE WONDERING...

The breakup has stuck! I have sworn the old table off and my new one has been great! I should have done it sooner--I'm sure my chess score would be much higher by now!

IT'S BEEN AWHILE

I KNOW!! I wanted to post sooner, trust me. But I have a job this semester--the real world can keep you incredibly busy! Anyway, I'm playing chess RIGHT NOW! And it's going great! You know, I really like playing as white, but the game in which I am currently embroiled is one in which I am playing as black. And it seems to be going well. I continuously have to remind myself to make wise choices and be conscious about my moves. I wonder if chewing gum while playing would help with that? Or, like, playing Mozart in the background?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

*SO* NOT COOL!!

As you may be aware, I do much of my online chess playing in the library. I usually sit at one of two tables. Well, unfortunately for me, the computers on the tables I sit at are constantly kicking me off for no reason! But I keep coming back to them. I seriously forget about the problems in the past and keep choosing the same tables...just to be disappointed again! Well, this JUST happened to me in the middle of a REALLY good match that I was winning!! I am SO mad! So, I'm breaking up with those two tables. I have moved on, and here's hoping my new spot treats me better! Good riddance!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

OH NO!!

Readers,
I spotted a reference to chess--not just regular chess, but online--in an article about a serial identity thief! Read the excerpt below:
"She stopped showing up at her job as a nursing assistant, spending most of her time playing chess online, escaping into a world that felt orderly, sensible, within her control."
The quote above describes Esther Reed, the "Girl Who Conned the Ivy League," a fascinating, disturbing article. I thought you might be interested--chess itself plays a minor role throughout the story.
Torero

SO LONG!!

I have decided to quit Tweeting, and have deleted my Twitter account. It was fun while it lasted, but ultimately, I need to focus on my chess game.

I'M STILL HERE!

I have been so busy, with a new job this semester, and two classes. But don't worry, I still have time for chess! In fact, I've been doing quite well recently. I reached an all-time high this month, before fluctuating back down. I have been trying to play people with higher scores, to improve--and to learn something about playing. I recommend trying a game with someone much higher-ranked than oneself--you'll be surprised at how well you can do if you put your mind to it!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A NEW YEAR, AND A CONFESSION...

I feel a little guilty saying this, but I have to get it off my chest! You by now know about my devotion to chess...but I haven't been forthcoming with my other recreation obsession, MMORPG's. It's like, I totally loved EQ for the longest time...and a good friend (questionable in influence...) has been seriously nagging me to start up with WoW. It's like, I'd love to do it, you know? But as much as I love MMORPG's, I just can't help comparing them to chess. One builds your mind and strengthens your logic. The other...yeah... I don't know. I mean, chess is time-honored and the game of kings. I just feel like my brain cells might suffer. I mean no offense to anyone by this post, but this comparison has been weighing on my mind lately. I think 2010 will be the year of chess for me, and chess might be surpassing MMORPG's in my esteem.