< Earlier Kibitzing · PAGE 7 OF 8 ·
|Jul-26-06|| ||Caissanist: I think it's important to make a distinction between what we say in the days immediately following someone's death and what is said later. I mean, the first news about this on one site was a message saying "Well, he finally did it. He finally drank himself to death." That was cruel and unnecessary, even if it may well have been true. |
When we first hear about someone's death, I think it is best not to dwell on the circumstances of the death itself. A polite euphemism is probably best, to honor the memory of the deceased and give consideration to Amber and others closest to him. People are still grieving and nowadays, for better or worse, we do a lot of our grieving online. The first things you say should be to celebrate the person's life, and try to provide words of comfort, even hopelessly inadequate ones, to the people who need it. You have to show respect for the person who lived--GM Wojtkiewicz seems to have led a remarkable life in many ways, and it is only right that the first thing you do is celebrate the remarkable.
Time goes by, though. Eventually, people stop wearing black and get on with their own lives, and eventually facts need to come out. It's not just morbid curiousity--a lot of leading chess masters have been alcoholics, and a number have died from it. Why does this happen? I'm sure there are many opinions, but to decide whose opinion is right, we have to know facts. If we want to understand this kind of thing, we need to be honest and open about what has happened.
|Jul-27-06|| ||percyblakeney: Some details in the biography of Wojtkiewicz are very different from how for example Leko would be described...|
<He was always Talís favorite student, because of his talent and his obvious affinity to the three required non-chess components of Talís chess school: smoking, drinking, and womanizing>
<and resort cities in the South of Russia, working as a pimp>
|Jul-31-06|| ||samikd: he he he ...just imagine Leko working as a pimp :) :)|
|Jul-31-06|| ||Marmot PFL: Wojo lived life to the fullest and did not believe in wasting his days trying to prolong them. Many Soviet citizens lived for today since they didn't think tomorrow would have much to offer. A choice between war or life on the run (Although I doubt Wojo would have gone to Afghanistan any more than Bobby Fischer was going to Nam).|
|Aug-09-06|| ||spirit: <Ethereal Spirit>...|
|Aug-19-06|| ||Timothy Glenn Forney: |
click for larger view
Wojtkiewicz - Kutsyn: Riga 1979- white to move and win.
|Aug-19-06|| ||FritoHead: I saw Mr. Wojtkiewicz for the first and only time at the Kentucky Open this past June. He is the only GM i have actually been an arm's length away from.
After round three, i had taken a pummeling from a stronger player. I stepped outside to get some air and i saw a man smoking a cigarette. A Kentucky player went up to him, reached out his hand and Asked "Wojo" how he had been since last year.
With the cigarette in his mouth, he looked at the Ky player, shook his hand and said "Good".
I immediatly realized this was Wojo, and here i was a foot away. The respect i felt at that moment, The awe; I have not felt around another person. His confidence permeated around me and i was rendered useless.
Gm Wojo may have had problems,but who does not? To say he was this or that,it does nothing except to affirm that we ourselves are real, and i tell you right now, Wojo was real. I saw him, and for just a moment i was him, lost in my awe, but found in his glory. Rest Gently, life was good.|
|Aug-19-06|| ||Fischeristhebest: Nf6+ forces mate|
|Aug-19-06|| ||Reorder: Fritohead, what a lovely post. Thank you. I will pass this along to Amber. I know it'll make her feel good. And thank you for actually posting rather than just thinking something so nice. Shared joy multiplies the joy.|
|Oct-26-06|| ||thesonicvision: the key to the combination is that
white has to make sure he can stop the
1.Qf6, for example, would lose to:
4.Kg2 Bh3 and black wins
Instead, white should play 1.Nf6+,
which leads to...
and if 2..Qd1+ and Kg2,
the white queen can capture the
f-pawn if pushed to f3.
|Nov-22-06|| ||Reorder: It's been 4 months and 8 days since Alex left. In some ways it seems like a couple of years, so much has happened. In other ways it feels like it was just a few days ago.|
|Jan-15-07|| ||WannaBe: Happy Birthday, Wojo. Again, it was an absolute pleasure to have met you and chat with you.|
|Mar-07-07|| ||spasskey69: Wojo is the reason why I am studying the Catalan opening.
Yes, he seems to have had a drinking problem. I was playing in a chess tournament in Arlington, Virginia, and in the midst of a game, heard a lot of noise out in the hall.
Wojo had showed up, drunk. He wasn't playing, just stopping by.
I do not pass judgement on his drinking -- I have enjoyed many a Jack Daniels and water on the rocks myself and certainly understand the appeal that that sort of lifestyle has.
I relate this story for the record.
Chessplayers like Wojo and Tal and Alekhine had lives filled to the brim with chess. None of these guys left a boring legacy.
What most interests me about Wojo, though, is his steadfast resistance to violations of human rights throughout the world. When all is said and done, and the sadness of his early passing has faded into soft memories of a bright spirit, it is this commitment, not just to chess, but to humanity, that will be Wojo's final legacy.
He was a man, taken for all that is; and he lived his life to the full.
|Mar-08-07|| ||Gypsy: <spasskey69: ... When all is said and done, and the sadness of his early passing has faded into soft memories of a bright spirit, it is this commitment, not just to chess, but to humanity, that will be Wojo's final legacy. He was a man, taken for all that is; and he lived his life to the full.>|
What a testimonial you give! I never met Wojo, but now I know that he was a grand, grand man.
|Mar-08-07|| ||WannaBe: <Gypsy> I had the pleasure of meeting Wojo, and it was shortly after the 2006 National Open (in Las Vegas) that Wojo left us.|
In Las Vegas, it was my second time meeting him, and since I kinda 'knew' him, I politely asked him to use his matches for my cigarette.
He passed his matches to me and I said thanks. That was all the conversation I had with Wojo, besides looking at his board and snapping a picture or two...
|Mar-08-07|| ||Gypsy: <WannaBe> He does look like a man who put in some hard miles.|
|Apr-20-07|| ||SteveO1: ChessLifeOnline has some good articles about how Wojo won with the Catalan.|
|Jul-14-07|| ||Reorder: It was a year ago today that we lost Alex. He lived such an intense life and it was all too soon over. I'm glad he was in this world for the years he was here.|
|Mar-22-08|| ||Granny O Doul: I'm a fan of Qg7+ from that diagram.|
|Jul-14-08|| ||Reorder: It was two years ago today that we lost Alex. Life has gone on, but I think it's likely that everyone who knew him and loved him feels the void he left when he left this world.|
|Jul-20-08|| ||Everett: <Granny O Doul> I am a fan of your choice as well. Mate is forced after 1.Qg7! Rxg7 2.Nf6+ Kh8 3.Rxf8+ Qg8 4.Rxg8+ Rxg8 5.Rh7#|
Wow. Thanks for posting the position <TGF>!
|Jan-04-09|| ||Reorder: On the 14th of January, 2009, it'll be 2 1/2 years since Alex departed this vale of tears. I think his intensity is still resounding in some lives.|
I'm not likely going to count any further than this. I'm still sad often about his passing. This is past though. Alex is someplace else, and he's not suffering.
|Jan-19-09|| ||ztwebb: What about the mate starting with Qh8? 1.Qh8 KxQ 2.RxR Rg8 3.Nf6 RxR 4.Rh7#|
|Jan-22-09|| ||ztwebb: Never mind. Kf8 wastes the mate.|
|Jan-15-10|| ||Knight13: This guy's eating embrosia with Zeus right now.
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