Wednesday, September 23, 2009

They also ran who only stood and gaped

Karpov vs. Kasparov, Valencia 2009. This clash of aging, over-the-hill titans, with Deep Blue banished to Davy Jones' locker, sort of reminds me of Jesse Owens at the 1936 Olympics, except that Hilter allowed Owens to compete (and ride in the front of Berlin buses). Is this the best we humans can do?

[n.b. My chess prowess, like my Go prowess, is a joke. I prefer to call it that. It's actually a nasty bit of perspective (not sour grapes, of course) on that uppity snootiness about another elite pastime I could never master. That's why I'm rooting for the machines. To be honest, I know quite a few people who play chess — even some who play chess well — and they are all nice people. Until they play chess. Then they smirk. They try not to. It's just a flicker of a smile in one corner of the mouth, quickly suppressed, and a flash of cruel fire in the eyes like the remembered glow of a smashed lightning bug. My so-called friends! I don't play chess with them, only with small children. Ones I know I can beat... Mwah-ha-ha-ha...!]



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