Tuesday, November 25, 2008

2008 Chess Olympiad: Some Final Thoughts

It's all over for another two years, thank Goddess! I am now wracking my brain trying to figure out how I can possibly report on all of the news on the chess femmes in this Olympiad in my final column for Chessville. Well, I guess I'll have to make it the biggest (and hopefully the best) column yet, with a special section devoted entirely to the Olympiad. I still have a few days, it's not due to be published until the beginning of December. I foresee a four-day weekend of sleepless nights... There are now a wide variety of websites that provide first-class information on chess events - some more timely than others (but for those less "timely", always worth the wait, darlings). Here are those I am most familiar with - by no means all of the sites that provide news and insight into the happenings in the world of chess. Special thanks and unending admiration for the following - how the hell do they do what they do day after day after day...
  • Kudos to GM Susan Polgar who did triple-duty - not only reporting information at her blog, but also serving as Chess Ambassador and English-Language Press Liason, as well as holding great interviews daily with players and personalities from the Olympiad. Thanks also to Paul Truong, the official photographer for this Olympiad, for his fantastic and candid photographs, round after round, from off days, the official opening, the official close, and everything in-between. I am appreciative of the great job that both Polgar and Truong did.
  • I was very happy that Chessdom went back to its "live" blog for coverage of Round 11. I did not like the "live chat" experiment - most of the comments were boring, common, and disjointed. It was hard to follow what was going on. In the "live" blog, on the other hand, it was easy to follow the action as the time counted down toward the end of the games.
  • The Week in Chess has set the standard ever since I've been online (December, 1998) and no doubt from before! Mark Crowthers lets nothing stand in his way of going the extra mile, whether it be going over games move by move to create and/or correct PGN notations or correctly identifying otherwise sometimes obscure players.
  • I was very impressed with Chess Vibes - very current reports, great photographs and a slamming lay-out. How'd you do that?
  • Europe E'checs provided much-needed information - in French (but they have English translation on some pages).
  • Mig Greengard has such a wicked sense of humor! His Daily Dirt blog (part of Chess Ninja) provides much-needed insight and lots of laughs, but be warned: all types hang out there, compensated for with a collection of wits and sparkling commentators, most of whose commentary probably whizzes over the ignoramus heads of the thankfully relatively few a-holes. I believe (but have no proof) that a lot of chess femmes read the commentary there but generally refrain from commenting themselves - only a brave few every now and then wade in.
  • Daaim Shabazz's The Chess Drum is a must-read for keen insights into the chess world in general and, in particular, for news about chess players that generally aren't covered elsewhere.

A few final thoughts: I'm still absolutely amazed that the American men were able to repeat their miracle Bronze performance from 2006 in 2008 Dresden! More incredible, at least to me, is the US Women's Team performance. I honestly did not think they had a prayer of winning a medal. I'm quite happy to say I was SO SO WRONG. And I will eat my wool beret tonight for supper. Hell, I need a new one anyway, this one was looking rather ratty...

I am absolutely convinced that what happened to the Russian Teams (Men - oh, I mean "Open" - and Women) was Divine Justice being meted out to Miniputin, the ass! LOL - do you hear laughter, Pharaoh er, Miniputin? That's the sound of millions of chess fans falling off their chairs and rolling on the floor busting a gut in hilarity at the performances of the oh-so-vaunted #1 ranked teams entering the Olympiad: Russian Men and Russian Women. Bwwwwwwwaaaaaaaaahhhhhhaaaaaaaa!

The Georgian Women won the Gold Medal The Georgian Women won the Gold Medal The Georgian Women won the Gold Medal

They're the only team other than USA and India I would care to see win the Gold. Sweet! Particularly Sweet since the Russian mobsters who put together the Women's World Chess Championship INSISTED that the female chessplayers of the world assemble in Nalchik, Russia, mere miles away from the GEORGIAN WAR ZONE after Russian invaded Georgia in August, 2008 a few weeks before the Championship was to convene. Those Russians particularly pooh-poohed the Georgian Women chessplayers' concerns - and the concerns of other Federations on behalf of their players - about sending their players to Nalchik.

Ha ha, Miniputin. The best is yet to come. Just watch what happens to your "vaunted" Ruble (Rubble?) in the coming months. Nothing personal against the players on the Russian chess teams - I suggest you emmigrate to Manhattan before President-Elect Obama takes office on January 20, 2009...

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...