Monday, December 5, 2011

Perhaps I can stave Lenny off for another year

Helsinki December 2010

My son has Lenny found a new way to humiliate me – this time by long distance.  A week or so ago when I was in Paris I received an invitation from him to play Chess online through

Cool – I thought – I haven’t played Chess for about 35 years – but I am sure I haven’t forgotten how – and what would he know about Chess.  Well – certainly enough to beat me. I have escaped with one draw and the rest of the time he has crushed me.

I asked him where he learned to play Chess and he said that I had taught him – and I just cannot remember doing that because it was so long go.

There is an evolution in the father-son relationship when at one stage the father can beat the son at everything and finally the son can beat the father at everything. I had hoped it would take longer than this.
I remember the last time I played my son at tennis. He was about 13 years old and it was not a matter of me beating him - it was a matter of me trying to escape death from his serves.

I would try to anticipate where he would serve and at the moment the ball hit his racket I would hurl myself in the opposite direction as this yellow rocket fanged past me at about 200 kilometres per hour - taking chunks of the court with it.

Occasionally – if he faulted – I would get a chance at a second serve and then he would run me ragged - but would occasionally let me win a point.

He could not let me win at golf. Even if he had wanted to let me win I was simply too bad and even on his worst days he could still beat me by a wide margin.

But chess – even with my waning mental powers I still should be able to give him a run for his money – but I seem to have lost the basic skills.

I have – in the basement where else – a beautiful chess set – and some chess books – but it would take me years to find them. So I have written to Amazon - and a book and a basic chess set will arrive shortly. I will gird my loins to see if I can stave off Junior for another year or so before he can really beat me at everything. 


  1. Good luck ! Isn't it funny how things turn around whether it is with our children or our parents !!

    Have a great day and I hope your chess set and book arrive soon so you can swop up before your next game.

  2. I think its interesting that you got something easier off Amazon than from your own building. The information super highway and the information super closet. Cool.

    I played chess very intensely for a couple years with my father around 7th grade. I learned that he couldn't play after driving long distances. I used it to my advantage the last time we played. It wound up being very disastrous, and we never played again. To this day I hate the game, and really most games with other humans. I did play chess a couple times with a pseudo-foster daughter I had for a short time but only because she insisted.

  3. My ex husband taught me to play a million years ago (good lord, I'm older than I thought). It took 3 games for me to get to grips with the strategy and I beat him on the 4th game. We never played again. He probably tells a different story though :) Happy practice!

  4. I only just yesterday won a game of Scrabble with our college daughter, Lauren. She's a total brain who, at age 22 already speaks several languages, has lived abroad twice, can debate politics with the 'big boys', and who is already working on her Ph.D. She makes me feel like a dithering idiot half the time, but damn it, I beat her yesterday!

    I haven't played chess with her since she was around 12. One can only take so much. Hope you beat Lenny!

  5. Me: I hope he also does not start practicing.

    fmcgmccllc: Exactly

    esbboston: I have the concentration powers if a red ant so was never good at it - and never will be.

    Sandy: You are either very good or he was very bad

    SK Waller: I can beat him at scrabble because I have been around longer