Wednesday, March 3, 2021

My New Obsession


I'm not afraid to admit it, I have a bit of OCD. 

Not so much on the disorder part, more on the obsessive part. My obsessions rarely have a debilitating effect, with the exception of the many hours I spent researching, purchasing and creating ways to make my neighbor's noisy Malinois stop barking and shut the fuck up.

But it has been true for as long as I have known myself that if I'm in for a dime I'm in for a dollar.

And so it is with the new Masterclass subscription my wife gifted me for a recent birthday. Fair warning, you'll probably be reading about Masterclass in future posts as I now have access to close to 200 sessions in a wide variety of subjects. 

I've already peeked at some of the introduction by Aaron Sorkin, Joyce Carol Oates and some chef I never heard of and I can tell I'm going to be glued to my computer for this fascinating one on ones.

As indicated above, I'm well into the series taught by Chess Grandmaster Garry Kasparov, who is not only a king of the chessboard but handles himself quite well on twitter and is unsurprisingly intelligent. I have yet to meet someone with a command of the game who is not intelligent, present company excepted.

Admittedly the first few classes are not suitable for advanced players. In them, Garry goes over some rudimentary concepts and tactics like the double attack, the triple attack, skewers, and the difference between tactical chess and strategic chess.

I've been playing chess for 38 years, ever since I was 6 years old, and so much of this is a rehash to me. That's fine. For now. I don't have the wherewithal to get into all that chess nomenclature like BXkc3 or QXd4. 

But, when he's not stuttering or reaching into the deepest recesses of his brain for the right 2nd language words (he's native Russian), Garry does have some interesting observations on playing style.

"Don't rush"

"Allow your opponent to make a mistake"

"Think long term"

"Never panic"

As you might have guessed, these are not just lessons that work well on the chessboard, they have meaningful applications in the game of life.

Which brings me to my latest scheme involving an outdoor Bluetooth speaker, mounted on my garage, and the low volume 24 hour broadcasting of bagpipe music aimed at that damned barking dog.

More on that later. 

1 comment:

MetalPotential said...

The Mamet one is great.