Chess Greats as Mentors in Life

Early on in life, as much as I wanted to be the World Chess Champion some day, I knew that a lot of things would have to go my way for it to happen. What if I didn’t make it to GrandMaster? Or International Master? Or Master? What would I be if I didn’t have anything to show for my efforts at the chessboard? What if I could not support myself with Chess? That was always depressing because it took me a long time to figure out what I was good at. Even today, I still have my doubts. Whether my accounting knowledge is good enough? If I become a CPA, will I be just another CPA? What impact will I have on kids’ life? etc.

Despite the doubts, I kept playing Chess, and because I loved the game, I read about other Chess players, especially the greats. I saw that we (Chess players) have great Engineers, Architects, Mathematians, Physicists, Musicians, Ph.D s, M.D.s etc – the list goes on. The people who love chess go on to do other things. Life isn’t just about Chess. I can’t believe I said that because Chess was my everything at one point. I still think that I will get back to it some day. I have talked about the chess greats, but there are a million other people whom we do not read about their chess accomplishments but they are or were very good, but they went on to do other things without losing their love for the game.

While writing this piece I decided to research and come up with a comprehensive list of Chess players and what they did for a living in addition to playing Chess. Luckily, I found a nice piece written by Leopold Lacrimosa at Chessville

What I am trying to say is that I looked at all these people, and told myself that I had to have a back up plan to Chess. I had to work hard at school – 🙂 I had to make sure that I was good enough to make it in college and graduate school. I had to develop the skills that are needed to survive in the work place. Just in case. Here I am not yet a World Chess Champion, but I am paying my bills and looking forward to a brighter day every day/night.

Who were/are your mentors? Were you ever at crossroads between chess and life? What did you do?

Bobby Fischer – Robert James Fischer

The player whose games I will be analyzing is Robert James Fischer – well known as Bobby Fischer. He was a chess prodigy. He worked very hard for what he achieved. He was the world champion of chess from 1972 – 1975. His life outside chess was something else that I would rather not go into. His style of play is easier for me to explain/analyze than that of Alexander Alekhine or Gary Kasparov. I thought about analyzing J.R. Capablanca’s games, but I decided to go for somebody who blends classical chess with hyper-modern chess. For more info on Bobby Fischer, go to Wikipedia

Fischer for beginners – Analysis of Bobby Fischer’s games

I will try to analyze Bobby Fischer’s game- any that I can lay my hands on. It will do it in the style of Irving Chernev’s Logical Chess My work will emulate that classic…

My analysis will not be too detailed because…

First, I do not have the time to analyze Fischer’s games in depth. (Do I have the talent? We will see…)

Second, I will not be using a computer to do the analysis, because I don’t want to.

Third, it is a challenge for me to go through the games, and try to figure out what was happening. Usually when I play through GrandMaster games, I don’t have the patience to analyze the position before seeing the next move. This will force me to see what I missed, way back when.

Fourth, I hope my kids – when they come into existence – and when they take up chess some day, they can have an idea of what kind of things to look for when they are thinking at the chess board.

Lastly, it is my way of training/practicing for when I return to Chess.

Like everything else I write here, this is not to be construed as advice of any sort. It is just another chess player’s take on things. Feel free to write comments or suggestions on the games I pick. I would prefer that computers not be used to find moves and hence comments/suggestions.

I will get the games from Chessgames

I will be picking a game a week. That’s the best I can do I think. In a year, there will be 52 games to go through… and in 10 years, over 500 games! Amazing what time can do! 😉