Saturday, November 17, 2007

Hello, World!

Screw it, I’ll just do it.

Start a chess blog that is. Oh boy. As if the world needed another chess blog. But what the heck… It's Saturday morning and I'm enjoying a nice cup of tea, so why not start a blog while I'm at it. At least I’ll have a place to dump all my ramblings...

For a while now, my daily routine has been to read many of the wonderfully entertaining chess blogs out there, most notably the Knights Errant. They’ve been a true inspiration, and ultimately the reason why I decided to start this blog. I hope I will succeed in being nearly as dedicated to the royal game as they are.

Some of the blogs I’ve enjoyed most are

Chessconfessions, Takchess, Temposchlucker, Samuraipawn ( who I see loves Hip Hop. Word!), Hardcore Pawnography, Grandpatzer chess, Patzer's Corner and a whole bunch of others (see sidebar)… there's just an incredible treasure trove of chess writing out there.

Great stuff all you guys. Seems like I learn something new every day.

So what’s my goal, chesswise? To improve. How much? I dunno… enough for me not to feel like a total patzer. How about somewhere between 1700-1900? Sounds good to me. But there’s a long, rocky road of improvement leading up to those heights.

But how to do it? Ohhh… what a loaded question. Much has been written on this topic, and I’ve compiled a little to do list for my own improvement (which will be the subject of a soon-to-come post). For starters, I’ve told myself I’d start engaging in some serious tactics study. I’ve got CT-Art, PCT, and lots of books with tactical exercises (the Polgar brick, Weteschnik, Alburt’s pocket book, etc etc) Not sure which path I’ll take, but I’m leaning towards going through PCT until I have to throw up. Whaddaya think? Also, I’m hoping this blog will help me be more diligent in annotating my own games, something I haven’t really done up to this point.

A little bit about me: I’m a patzer out here in beautiful
California, with a job that doesn’t leave me nearly enough time to study chess as much as I’d like to. I started playing chess when I was about 10 I think, but only very sporadically. I didn’t get serious about chess until March of this year when I joined a local chess club. I’ve only played in one tournament so far, with a somewhat abysmal performance (hmm funny how my Saturday performance in that tournament was decent, but my Sunday performance after a long night filled with slightly alcoholic beverages turned out, well, not quite so good…) Hence, I only have a provisional rating, and it’s under 1000. I like to believe that I can do better than that, since I regularly beat a 1400 at my chess club :)

Oh, did I mention that I’ve got more chess books than I’ll ever be able to read? Probabaly around 110 or so, haven’t counted since I hit the 100 mark. Damn you, chess! No, I didn't mean that. I love you baby!

You can find me on Playchess (MrCdawg), where I play mostly 3 minute games (I know, I know… bad).
My Blitz rating fluctuates fairly wildly (with my best rating being just above 1400 and my lowest in the 1100’s), currently it's around 1300. I’m trying to force myself to play more 5, 15, and 30 minute games. Not much luck so far. Which brings me to another goal I have: play way more slow games. I mean seriously slow. Tournament slow. G/90 type stuff.

Feel free to hit me up for a game if you see me online!

I’m not sure what it takes to become an official Knight, so here’s my plea to any Knights that happen to read this: help! Do I need to read Don Quixote? Get knighted by the Queen of England? Introduce a novelty on the 23rd move of the Accelerated Dragon? Tattoo “De La Maza” on my forehead?

My name is Cdawg and I’m a Chessaholic. See ya’ll around.


Blue Devil Knight said...

Great to see you entering the crazy world of blogging and chess improvement. I've gotten a lot of helpful feedback the past couple of years which has improved my game quite a bit.

If you want to be a Knight, just let the Secretary Knight, Samurai Pawn, know. I'll add you to my sidebar next update.

Chess books are as serious an addiction as chess itself. Every now and then I'll try to put a moratorium on myself: no new book until I read two of the unread books I already own. It lasts until I want to try out a new opening or the new hot thing comes out.

Chessaholic said...

Thanks for the warm welcome BDK! Yeah the camaraderie and feedback from other chess nuts is what I'm most excited about. I've been reading your blog regularly and the comments are just priceless. Lots of good feedback to your posts.

As far as chess books- I think I have a serious problem :) as soon as I hear someone say something good about a book, I have to have it because it might just be that ONE book that will turn me into the next Kasparov...

We should open a club, Chess Book Addicts Anonymous or something... we'd have many members.

Polly said...

Welcome to the blogosphere. I'm relatively new to this stuff myself, but it's been fun getting feedback on some of my games that I've posted. Also it's good to have fellow bloggers to commiserate with. There is always plenty to commiserate over.

Chessaholic said...

Thanks Polly, I look forward to lots of commiserating!

I'm going to add your blog to my list.

Dean said...


Chessaholic said...

Thanks Dean!

Anonymous said...

You're right. The world doesn't need another chess blogger. It certainly didn't need my pile of stinkiness. (This doesn't mean that your blog won't be worth reading, of course. Just applauding your realism.)

You will find that in the chess blogging world that some have maintained their sanity better than others. BDK, for example, started chess as an adult, and still maintains some connection to reality. Same with chessloser, although I suspect he's going to go real fast.

I learned in 4th grade (although only played seriously for 5 years) you can see where that's led to.

Chessaholic said...

liquideggproduct: hey, maybe insanity is underrated. they say there's a fine line between genius and insanity, so if I go insane I might end up being closer to genius than I am now :)