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Pete Z
 I came across this position in a game last weekend.  And found what I thought was a pretty cool play.  Duck is not as fond of my play as I am, sometimes at least... I've gotten different results different times simming it..

The position kind of fascinated me, and I've been considering it ever since, which for an early game position, is kinda different for me.

The more I though about it, it seems to me the kind of position that is as much as anything a test of ones philosophy on scrabble, mindset, outlook, etc. as anything else.  

No play scores more than the mid 20s.  there are great leaves possible, cool set ups possible, a whole bunch of possibilities and ideas on how to play it.

My opps first play is the kind that can lead to inferences, about his leave, which impacted my thinking 

I found the flashy play that duck didn't particularly like, that barring an opponent bingo in exactly right place guaranteed me 40 on more on the next play, and left the kind of tiles likely to score well in such a case regardless, but left myself very unlikely to bingo.  Duck's choice is heavily towards the most bingo friendly leave.  

On reflection, as much as my play is cute, I think it is almost too passive in some respects by settling for a very likely 40+ next play when I could have been building towards a bingo.  with a very strong leave on an open board.  

I love this kind of situation, even if I screw it up, just because of the possibilities that exist out of it.  

what went through my mind... and should I alsk the surgeons to put back in what they took out.Collapse )


So, what do you do and why, and why am I an idiot for picking the one I did. Justify your answer and show your work.

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Current Location: Law School
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Current Music: Michael Penn- March

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After a fun and successful first run in June, I sm looking to Schedule the Second Annual Akron Collins Instant Classic for next year.

Those who attended, and those who didn't, let me know what you want- when, rules, goodies, etc.  Let me know if you enjoyed the first one, what needs to be changed, anything you think I should take into account.  I'd like to see a bigger turnout this time, but I just want to make sure that there's some options for Collins play available.  Any input is welcome here, or by email at petezeigleratgmaildotcom

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Current Location: Angel Falls Coffee House, Akron Ohio
Current Mood: bouncy bouncy

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ididjonassalk  let me know something I should have noticed a while ago...

The cross-tables listing for my Akron tourney shows a 0 under the entrants, when there really are people listed... don't let the zero scare you, click the icon, and folks are listed...  I'd love to see the number of entrants grow, so consider a an excursion to Akron for some collins.  Also, please contact me if you have any questions about transportation, or lodging/billetting... I make no guarantees, but I am more than willing to do anything I can to help folks find places to crash, transport to/from airports, etc.

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Find the best play.  One of my cooler finds of late.  From a game last nite against ipecac_icecap

 ABCDEFGHIJKLMNO
1                              
2                       Z10 O1 A1  
3                         K5 I1  
4                   A1 H4 E1 A1 D2  
5                     A1        
6                     V4        
7                   F4 E1        
8             J8 A1 V4 A1          
9     C3     L1 O1 T1   R1          
10     A1   L1 O1 G2 E1   M3          
11 P3 U1 N1 D2 I1 T1                  
12 U1   D2                        
13 B3   Y4                        
14 I1                            
15 C3                            

Rack: ?EEFNRS

George won the game, but to find this play while fighting to stay awake made the game worthwhile.

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Current Location: home
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Current Music: Decembrists- Picaresque

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The position, with full unseen pool and whatnot, is HERE.



, including 4 unknown tiles from current player's rackIt's a relatively straight-forward one at first blush.  There are exactly seven tiles left in the bag, with both blanks unseen, and I trail 299 to 323.  I strongly suspect, due to an obvious fish the previous play, that my opponent holds at least one, and possibly both blanks, and considering the unseen pool unseen tiles (AANNNOORRSUW??), a bingo, while not automatic, seemed probable. My rack is CEIKRSV.  This rack yields one eight, which I did find relatively easily.  It also plays at 14A. 

Pete: Turn 12

 ABCDEFGHIJKLMNO
1 L1 A1 C3 E1     P3 U1 N1 T1          
2       F4 A1 Z10 E1     O1 N1        
3   Y4 E1 T1 I1     Q10   T1 I1   O1 E1  
4 V4 A1 T1       P3 I1 N1 A1 S1 T1 E1 R1 S1
5 I1     W4 A1 D2       L1 I1       L1
6 O1 H4     B3 I1 B3     E1         Y4
7 L1 I1       F4 A1 M3 E1 D2         E1
8 E1           M3 I1 X8           R1
9 T1             G2              
10           J8 A1 G2 E1 R1          
11       D2 U1 O1                  
12 H4 U1 G2 E1                      
13 O1                            
14 O1                            
15 D2                            
 Chris Sheppardunknown323
PeteCEIKRSV299

My logic went as follows:  If I bingo, and he has a bingo, I lose.  and with any small fishing play, I'm drawing at a sub-optimal leave for the necessary bingo.  An intermediate play that scores probably blocks lines I may need to respond, and would probably get outrun by an out in two or three unless I draw a blank.  I decided to exchange KV, figuring that CEIRS +2 had a lot of potential on the wide open board, and sticking him with the V and the K might provide the points I'd need.

I just don't know if my logic was totally on the mark.  Quackle, after 1019 iterations, gives the following:
F10 (JO)CK             17    48.87%
K10 SICK                 34    48.50%
exch KV                      0     47.12%
14A (O)VERSICK   88    46.97%

I don't know if Quackle is wrong because it doesn't infer that a blank seems less likely to come out of bag than pure probability would dictate, or am I wrong to overestimate the chances that my opponent holds that blank?  I think the timing of the plays leads me towards the exchange being better than JOCK, as you're giving your opponent seven tiles if he bingoes, and if he doesn't, throwing a couple of clunky ones for him to work with.  SICK seems way too easy to outrun...

I think I did the right thing, I'm just not sure I fully understand why... I open it to the floor for discussion and insults of the author.

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A fun position from Farmington.  My rack was AEGNRSU.  while the answer may be obvious to our most elite, I was very proud of finding the best play here.  It's the kind of play that makes me love the possibilities of this game we play. Sorry for the bad graphics, I'm a luddite.  The U in KUFI is on the center square

UPDATE- graphics improved.  thanks hector31

Rack: AEGNRSU

Pete: Turn 6

Pete: Turn 6

 ABCDEFGHIJKLMNO
1 H4                            
2 A1                            
3 N1                            
4 D2                            
5 Y4 O1                          
6   V4                          
7   O1           X8 I1            
8 V4 I1 T1 A1     K5 U1 F4 I1          
9 I1 D2   T1 O1 E1 A1                
10 A1         F4 E1 N1              
11
T
                           
12 O1                            
13 R1                            
14 E1                            
15 S1                            
 Carolyn Easter 194
PeteAEGNRSU81
---------------------




Answer after Christmas, assuming it's not posted in the comments.  This was my favorite play from an otherwise bad day for me.  Happy holidays everyone.

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Current Location: Butler, PA
Current Mood: accomplished
Current Music: Sunday Night Football

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My luck is wasted.

Just some news and notes, scrabble and other stuff (is there really other stuff?).

1.  Gym membership has been fun.  I feel good getting some cardio in daily, and hopefully it will help me for Dayton... if it doesn't at least the flashcards I study while I bike, run, or elliptical should.  It's funny the stares that I generate as I flashcard on the elliptical.
I will say, being the fat guy at the gym is quite fun.  I think the gym should hire me, frankly.  The job I do motivating people is surely enhancing the fitness experience for these people... trust me, when they see the fat guy biking faster than them, they speed up... no one wants to get outworked by me.  All in all, a fun time.

2.  Had a bad day of scrabble yesterday... lost far too many games, although in general, my play wasn't bad.  These are the frustrating ones... In poker, take a bad beat, bust out, and you can call it a day... in scrabble, the adventure continues... and one bad loss you cannot help can easily spiral into many losses you should avoid.  Need to find a way to just stay even keeled... it's funny... professionally, I consider my temperament one of my strengths... at the board, not so much.  Did learn GALOPADE tho.

3.  I'm kinda peeking me head outside of the political world right about now. I'd like to get a chance to see what all is out there for someone with my set of skills.  I'm still on the campaign, and I do not know that I would leave, but I would like to at least talk to folks about what else I could do.  My resume is strange, as most of my professional experience is in politics, with some freelance writing for newspaper and television thrown in.  My political experience includes press and campaign management, as well as consulting, commercial and mail writing and production, and any number of other little things.  I have no idea what outside of politics I could do, so I open it up to the mob... what other things could I reasonably find a job doing?  Anyone in the writing industry is particularly encouraged to respond.  My resume available to anyone by request... contact me at petezeigler at gmail dot com.

4.  Starting to go over my upcoming events schedule... right now, i'm about 70% on Farmington, then Players, my NAST Satty (which I will direct, and also be the standby player to avoid byes), then Hudson Labor Day weekend.  Look, I know that Chris Sheppard's Hudson tournaments are a bit unusual, and somepeople have not taken a liking to them... but please, come on out.  His Labor day events are three days, with a match play playoff... if you've not been there before, come out.  If you had an iffy experience there before, give it another try... it's a good chance for high rated players to get a cash, and for lower rated players to make a big ratings bump, and besides... I'll be there.  I guarantee it'll be a good time, and as I live about 40 minutes away, I am willing to open my doors to an attendant or two, if that helps make your decision easier.

5. After Hudson, then the two Fenton one-days (always a good time, highly recommended), maybe scrabbleshells Mississauga one day(any excuse to get to the Toronto area is a good one) hopefully Baltimore (which appears to have a quite juicy prize pool), then directing Burning River in Elyria Ohio (COME OUT EVERYONE), and then East Lansing the end of October.  Probably a Farmington mixed in there too.  After all that, my rating could be as high as 1500 or as low as 1300, depending on how much of a donkey I am.  I'd love to hit at least 1453 by the beginning of October, as that would give me a 500 pt jump over my first two years of play... not as fast or as attention getting as I would have liked, but it's something, I guess.

6. Hope everyone had a good holiday week... Catch y'all on the circuit.

PZ



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So, despite having a pretty killer day of scrabble, bad luck and a brilliant maneuver by an opponent relegate me to the "petit finals" fighting it out for 3rd thru sixth places.  And despite having the best record of any of the other "petit finalists" during the "petit finals,"  I finish in 5th place... I love Hudson.

I actually do, though.  The "best of two" matches add an element of game theory to the tournament that I find intriguing and challenging.

But before we get to that, and the big blunder that cost me about 40 bucks or so, let's review.  I end Sat. 5-2, + a bundle.  We play poker on Saturday nite, where I win.  My most feared opponent, the irascible aruspex, tried to bully me when I was bullying him... so I reraised with nothing, won a huge pot, and kinda coasted from there.  Then payed for some backgammon "lessons" from Jeff Clark and Linda. 

Sunday morning, I play a casual warmup game against Kelly.  I'm usually not a fan of warm-up games, but having never played him, seeing his word knowledge in action was too interesting to pass up.  He beat me in a fun, if not well-played (by me) game, 428-408. Got down early, got away with the phoney AILERONE* (having known aforehand of KM's lack of 8 study),  a turn after he played the pretty REPANELS for a double double.  I got down 137 and exchanged to ?DS, dumping GSUV (which i should have just played off).  I drew the second blank, which i knew pretty much sealed my fate... got my bingo down, but with the bag what it was, a second bingo without the blank looked unlikely.  Good to see he got a nice ratings jump at Hudson... he certainly is not a 1000ish player.  and when he learns the 8's. he'll be deadly.

As Jeff Clark (1545) was one point in spread behind Midge Skwire (1059), he was seeded sixth, so I drew him in the first best of two match.  What dumb luck. 



So, that was hudson.  I enjoyed it, altho I should have done even better.  Can't complain too much... my rating took a 59 point jump to 1360, and I think that I'm still nowhere near where I can be in the short or long term.  So I'm continuing my study on the 8's, and I have decided to individually flashcard every 4.  I want them cold by Dayton.  Hopefully, I'll keep this pace up, and be able to play Jason Idalski without fear of wrecking the ratings curve ;-).


 
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So, we go on Dinner break, and I am undefeated at 4-0.  Only Cheryl Melvin and myself are without a loss, and I know we will play each other in round five (gotta love Swiss Pairings).  If you had told me that I had to play Cheryl for the chance to go 5-0, and be the favorite to make it into the grand finals, I'd have been very pleased.  I'd have figured that Stock or Clark, or Maureen Kennerk would be far more likely to be undefeated (even than me, for that matter.)  But here I am, and I guess this is a good place to discuss the unique Match Play format used at the Hudson opens.

The first seven games are paired Swiss, and it is a one division open format.  After the seven games, the top two players are matched in a best of five finals.  To win the Hudson Open, one must be one of the top two players in the standings on day One.  Players 3-6 are entered into the "petit finals", where 3 plays 6 and 4 plays 5 in a best of 2 match, and the winners and losers of each match play a 2 game match for 3rd and 5th. 

So, being in first place, I knew that if I went 2-1 after dinner, I was in the finals, barring a miracle.   I practically had a spot in the 3 thru six playoff locked up... so, I was playing for a chance at first.

Unfortunately, the after dinner stretch of games was about as all over the map as possible.  New highs, sick lows, some great play by an opponent, and bad luck in a recount in a game I wasn't in, and we have games 5 through seven.



I'll be back tomorrow with the final day of play, and some discussion on the game theory and heartbreak inherent in the best of two matches.  Altho I got kinda screwed by them here, I'm a big exponent of them.
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There's so much to say... this may be my best tournament yet... i played better than I ever have, and while i certainly made my share of mistakes, I found I made fewer and less serious mistakes than I ever have in a tourney.  For example, I missed bingoes on 8 turns this tournament in 11 games, when in Farmington last week I missed 8 in seven games.  And 5 of the misses, I plain flat out didn't know, so I can't beat myself up over them.

I get to the Bob Evans near the venue at 10:45 Saturday for my traditional pre-Hudson meal.  ipecac_icecap joins me, and Karen Smith and Tom Kowalski come as we are eating.  A good, friendly breakfast, and we are off to the Holiday Inn.

A lot of people do not like the Hudson Open; the long breaks between rounds, the late start, the match play format (which will bite me in the ass... more on this later), and the director is not the most personable guy if you don't know him.  But for me, it is a sentimental favorite of mine.  It was my first tournament.  It is my measuring stick of progress in my game.  A good performance here would justify what I've been doing to get good, a bad performance would be crushing.


Games 5-7 and 8-11 in later installments this week.

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