Wednesday, October 13, 2010

One Degree of Separation, the Chess Version

Couple days ago I mentioned how people in a small community are more closely connected than it might seem.

Here's another example: that chess hustler I wrote about back in March? He and I are still playing chess. We get together downtown at The Wine Shop and Tasting Bar on Minnesota at 2 on Wednesdays where he routinely fleeces me. (He says I'm getting better, all I know is I'm still losing.)

And most here know of Doitchin Krasev AKA "Jason Evers," former member of the state organ OLCC. He is presently behind bars following charges of identity theft and making false statements to the government.

Well, the weekly meeting of the Downtown Bend Chess and Marching Society might have picked up a  new player. Fellow came by and introduced himself. Says he's be back next week to play. I'll let him play my instructor, I'll play the proprietor of the shop. I reckon I can take her if she spots me a castle and is distracted by serving customers. Gives me time to think and maybe move a piece or two when her back is turned.

Anyway, Krasev, it turns out, is quite the chess player. And even behind bars he is currently playing a game, via snail-mail, with the new player.

I don't know Krasev, but it looks like I now know someone who knows Krasev.

Any chess players out there? C'mon by. We're easy pickin's. And maybe someone knows someone who knows someone who knows Kevin Bacon.


  1. I know how to move the pieces! I used to play some as a teenager. I won a few games, so I thought I sorta knew how to play. Then I ran into someone who actually did know the game... Oops.

  2. Steve: You sound like my kinda player!

    Re Evers/Krasev: All those Russians and Eastern Europeans are great chess players. Maybe it comes from having nothing else to do during those cold, dark, endless winters.

    But in that case, why doesn't Bend produce great chess players?

  3. "...why doesn't Bend produce great chess players?"

    Bend is about /outdoor/ recreation, not indoor endeavors which require deep concentration. Heck, American culture generally doesn't hold geeky pursuits like chess in high esteem. Places even colder and darker in winter than Bend, e.g., Alaska, are not notable for the gross state grandmaster product (GSGP).

  4. Yeah, and having a governor like Sarah Palin doesn't exactly inspire deeply intellectual pursuits, either. I think I'll crack a beer and go do some plumbing... ;-)

  5. You're right, Jack, Bend is ruled by the jocktocracy (as Bob Woodward calls it). The uber-jocks (triathletes, professional bicycle racers, elite rock climbers) are the most esteemed members of the community.

    It's kinda like being in high school again, but with endurance-sports athletes taking the place of football and basketball players.


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