Letter from a Player

Full time job, work on PhD didn't prevent him from becoming a Junor Master
September, 2020
By Harrison Rusin

Dear Mr. Muñoz,

Thank you for the email.

I learned bridge 10 years ago, when I was 23, at a community course in New Jersey. I've played off–and–on since then, but devoted most of my leisure time to chess. I took up bridge again when my wife said she wanted a game we could play together, though she's not interested in playing duplicate.

When reactions to the pandemic shut down most of the clubs I figured it was a great time for me to investigate playing online. Living in New York, most of the clubs have pretty expensive fees (usually $10–25 per night). I started playing in a few novice/newplicate tournaments organized by "All For One," and also in some other online tournaments with players and teachers I've met online. Most of my few masterpoints, though, have come from online solitaire play (through BBO or the Funbridge app). I find this a great experience, especially as I don't have a regular partner.

I look forward to playing in more online tournaments in the interim while clubs are still shut down, and eventually finding a regular partner.

Re: my bridge experience, the main thing is more weekend and evening games, as I am a young working adult. I have noticed more evening games available lately, so I think I'll try playing in some of those.

Also, I'm finishing a PhD at the same time so I don't always have time for a full 3–4 hour session. I've greatly enjoyed the "speedball" sessions.

—Harrison


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