Robert (gurdonark) wrote,
Robert
gurdonark

bit by bit or step by step



Friday morning I went to a doctor's office to have blood drawn. Since October or so, taking samples of my blood has become sufficiently habitual for my physicians as to constitute a way of life. I will go back a week from Thursday to hear if further treatment is needed for my potassium issue.

I've been coping with the kind of low-grade bit of cold that includes some coughs and some sneezes. I seem to be about through it now. I got up early on Saturday to drive to Lovejoy High School in nearby Lucas, one town over from my town. I served as one of the subordinate tournament directors of a scholastic chess tournament. I arrived at bit after 7:30 a.m., computer in hand. I had assumed that, like the last time I assisted, I would be assigned to do data entry of the results into the pairings software.

I was assigned to be a "floor TD", which means that I was one of two people in a tournament room who monitored the games and made sure to keep up with the results. I watched while roughly forty-something kids played five rounds of chess on the time control game/30 minutes, which means that each side has thirty minutes for all of her or his moves. My room varied from later elementary school kids through the high school kids. The lead TD in my room was a nice fellow who began playing tournament chess in 1978, a year after I began. One of the volunteer moms who also staffed the room proved to be very pleasant as well.

I was pleased that the kids were thoroughly sportsmanlike. I think that the most difficult adjudication I had to make was when a boy said "where is the nearest bathroom?". The tournament went very quickly, without a hitch. I helped hand out the trophies at its conclusion. School tournaments are all about the trophies, so that even fifth place winners got a little snowman on a pedestal.

lovejoy winter wonderland chess tournament,january 14 2012

I even got a small honorarium, and paper "chess money" which I could redeem for a hot dog, a baked potato, a drink and three clementines. The experience made me want to run my own chess tournament again, on a much smaller scale, with a goal of a free admission fee.

My wife and I went to see the Meryl Streep movie "The Iron Lady" last night. We enjoyed the movie quite well, though like all bio-pics the movie made me want to read more of what did happen than savor the glimpses of what the director wishes to say happened. I am not in general impressed with arch-conservative ideologues, though I am also not impressed with far-left ideologues. I remember being in England one Summer not so long after the beginning of the Thatcher years, and found that a puzzling time of extremism on all sides.

After the movie, we went to Thai Noodle Wave in McKinney, where we had a fine meal. Then we headed home, where I soon fell asleep.

Today I may get out a bit for this or that, but in general I plan to rest.
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