Weekend at the Regional
Long story (35-40 hours of bridge) short —
I’m now a Life Master. Apparently, I’m not.
Best Story — Playing a midnight game, my RHO is a well-known Pro. He doesn’t know us, and is trying to bully the table. Partner and I have just nailed his pushy preempt down 3 doubled when we can’t make game. Undeterred, he opens 2 hearts and buys the contract (I have a scattered 11 count with a stiff heart). Dummy hits with no hearts. After a few tricks, partner shifts to a small heart, and the Pro (obviously trying to score his small trump by ruffing) plays the ace. He leads out, partner wins and plays another small heart. The Pro plays the King and doesn’t appear to notice that I’ve shown out. He leads a small card, I play the high card and partner trumps.
Pro — “That’s your partner’s trick.”
Partner tables his hand — “I’m trump tight. I’m playing Queen, Jack, you get your ten, I get the rest.” The Pro had pre-empted on a 5 card suit to the AKTxx and run into a 7-1 break. Down four. At the other table, his teammates bid to their reasonable four heart game, and get doubled (because of the hideous 5-0 break).
I still have terrible bidding judgement (way too many examples to list, just from this last week) but that’s never stopped anyone from making Life Master.
In fact, my favorite moment was when I told a friend (and national TD) that I’d finally made it, he turned to another TD and said “Brian’s one of the real LMs.”
Update — Either I misread a number, or what I thought were gold were only 1/2 gold, because according to the ACBL I’m a fraction of a point shy of LM.