Monday, February 06, 2006

Revisting Bobby Fischer


As most of you know, I’m a Bobby Fischer nut. If you read some past posts of mine you will see my views on him, his play, and his philosophy.

I wanted to revisit the original genius of Bobby Fischer (not Bobby Bracelet) before I started to play again this month because it gives me perspective on poker. I took off all of January to read and re-read books and get caught up on my limit game and see where I can take it. I’m excited about this new adventure into the limit game to be honest, I needed a fresh start.

Why the break from Stud you ask? I took some really ugly beatings at the Stud table that left my ego a bit hurt and I felt I just needed to step away for a bit and regroup. I don’t really like telling bad beat stories, but think back to the ugliest person you have ever woken up next to and double it…now you know how my run was. I digress.

Over the past month I have played a bit here and there but for the most part I haven’t really played serious since my whippings at The Taj. There are some personal things behind that, too, which I don’t want to get into at this point in time, but in the end it was mostly that I wanted to dive into this limit thing this coming year.

So let’s move on with my topic today. The following two quotes were taken from one of my favorite movies of all time, “Searching for Bobby Fischer”. And yes, I did watch it opening night…nuff said. Bruce is young Josh Waitzkin’s Chess Coach and these are his quotes from the movie that I want to look at.

Bruce to young Josh:
“Bobby Fischer held the world in contempt.”

Bruce tells young Josh this to prove a point about being nice to your opponents after Josh plays soft against an opponent. I totally understand this point of view. I never really talk to the people next to me when I play poker…I don’t sit at a table for 8 hours at a time to make friends. Throw on the NANO and try to find the groove…Coltrane helps me find it. I find it hard not to play hard to win. I, like most poker folk am competitive like that. Know this; it doesn’t always work for sometimes I do make friends with some of the older guys at the tables. But if you are sitting at the table it’s my take that you shouldn’t be the slightest of friends with anyone, you might get a bit soft on them. If you do find yourself getting soft, get to a new table or stop talking to people and being nice. Helixx, there is nothing wrong with check-raising Granny on the river.

There are tough players and nice guys, and I’m a tough player. – Bobby Fischer

Fischer does not merely outplay opponents; he leaves them bodily and mentally glutted. Fisher himself speaks of the exultant instant in which he feels the 'ego of the other player crumbling.' – George Steiner


Bruce to Josh’s Father:
“You have no idea what I want. What is chess, do you think? Those who play for fun or not at all dismiss it as a game. The ones who devote their lives to it for the most part insist that it's a science. It's neither. Bobby Fischer got underneath it like no one before and found at its center, art. I spent my life trying to play like him. Most of these guys have. But we're like forgers. We're competent fakes. His successor wasn't here tonight. He wasn't here. He is asleep in his room in your house. Your son creates like Fischer. He sees like him, inside.”

I have never found the groove in no-limit poker but I have found pockets. Honestly, I just have never found the groove of no-limit. I can sit and play it and hold my own, but pulling the trigger is what Bobby Baldwin calls having HEART! Booo…The Rooster doesn’t have HEART. Yet, as aforementioned, the ability to create art is beautiful when you find that spot. Weather it be at a 4/8 table or a 5/10 table, not so much the groove, but the art of poker. Making your 7-2 be what ever cards you want your opponent to think they are. To find the inner-tinkering of the game and master it…even if it’s for 5 hands is such a rush. If you have been playing poker for any length of time you will find this spot and it’s like writing a love poem in Jr. High…it just flows off your tongue and deep down her throat until she gags…errr. Oh, as I was saying, it’s the spot that you always want…not the zone, but the ability to turn you knowledge and inner-self into art. Thus, if you have wanted to deep down to be an artist and just didn’t have the skills or gifts to do as such…sure we might not be a Bobby Fischer or Stuey on the constant, but try and make art at the table every once in a while.

The beauty of his games, the clarity of his play, and the brilliance of his ideas have made him an artist of the same stature as Brahms, Rembrandt, and Shakespeare. – David Levy (on Fischer)

Geniuses like Beethoven, Leonardo da Vinci, Shakespeare and Fischer come out of the head of Zeus, seem to be genetically programmed, know before instructed. – John Collins

In closing, this post is just to get my thoughts straight before I head out to play. I’m a bit nervous as this is my first week getting back on the horse, yet I’m excited to sit and play. Will give updates here and there.


At 10:28 AM, Blogger Maudie said...

Keep us posted - I'll be following this closely...

At 11:24 AM, Blogger Huge Junk said...

You know, if you had subsituted Bobby Bracelet for Bobby Fischer on this one, you probably would have ended up with a very similar post.

Sure, more nut cancer and douchebag references, but close.

By the way, secured a date with a girl I met in my buddies apartment complex for this friday night. I could hear your voice calling me a pussy in the back of my head on my way in to work my magic.

At 2:06 PM, Blogger biggestron said...

Hey J.

Nice post! I empathize over taking a shot and having the cards bitchslap you back down.

As to your 'no-friends' table demeanor -
Remember the difference between mindset and table image. I think Daniel Negranu has this mastered - he plays to win but considers a friendly attitude an edge over his opponents.


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