"The man that hath no music in himself, Nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds, Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils; The motions of his spirit are dull as night, And his affections dark as Erebus. Let no such man be trusted." --William Shakespeare
Currently residing in Rome, GA USA (near Atlanta).
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Married to wife Bridget, two children (boys)...Royce (deceased - b. 4/8/2002, d. 4/22/2002) and Rowen (b. 4/1/2004)
I am married to my wonderful wife Bridget, and have been blessed with two beautiful boys, Royce and Rowen. Royce is sadly no longer with us (he died in infancy when he was 14 days old), but he now has a little brother named Rowen!
UPDATE: 8/2006 - We have found out that we are expecting another baby, sometime in the Spring of 2007! Stay Tuned!!!
I am an Aquarius (birthday is February 15th); actually a double Aquarius with Virgo Rising...currently trying to get my life back together after the Year From Hell (2002)...I miss my Dad and baby Royce and love them very much...I have a wonderful wife, an awesome sister and terrific mother that are still around and I love them to pieces, too!
Interests: Chess (of course), Music, Computers, History, Cycling, Reading, Family
I first learned how to play chess when I was six years old...both my father and (maternal) grandfather taught me how to play. When I say that, I mean the board, what the pieces are, and how they all move. That was about it. To this day I lament that there were no scholastic chess resources nearby as a child, otherwise the following story would have a much different outcome...but, I digress...
I liked playing throughout high school, and even joined the USCF in the summer between my junior and senior years to try and play in a couple of tournaments. That was when I found out how woefully out of sync I was with everything chess-related. I knew how the pieces moved, yes, but I had no idea about the actual concepts behind the game. I knew little to nothing about tactics. I knew nothing about opening or endgame theory. I in fact first learned about openings at this time! Needless to say, my experiences playing in tournaments were far from satisfactory.
At this point, I went to college, and chess gradually disappeared from the radar. I was more heavily involved in classes, music, girls and partying! My last tournament was in January 1992. I then graduated from college, and I was working in jobs that required weekend schedules, effecitvely shutting me out of tournament chess for the duration.
Fast-forward to the present day. In the past year, coinciding with the birth of my son Rowen, my interest in chess has resurfaced. My motivations in improving my play are for the purpose to teach chess to children, particularly underprivileged children. If I had that kind of experience between six and ten years old, I could have very well become a much stronger player. At the very least, my test scores (and grades) in school would have certainly been better. Learning and studying chess at that age has proven to improve test scores, concentration, critical thinking, etc. I have the attention span of a gnat...borderline ADHD, I guess. But, again I digress...
My logic is that in order to be an effective teacher, I should also be an effective player...I don't have to be a master-strength player, but I should always be striving to improve my play, and learn new things about the game, and new ways to teach it to others.
To that effect, I have renewed my membership in the USCF last year, and am also now a member of the Georgia Chess Association.
I finally had a "normal" work schedule (weekends off) for the first time beginning in the Fall of 2004. I played in my first OTB tournament in 13 years in February 2005...of course I did not do as well as I hoped for, but I was pleased with my overall performance, and I could take stock of what I needed to work on further....I have found that my performance has been much better online than OTB...I think the main reason is that I am so used to looking at the board in a two-dimensional environment online that I have difficulty visualizing over the board in a three-dimensional environment! I make more tactical errors and outright blunders! So, I am working hard to "retrain" myself to visualize over a three-dimensional chessboard. I set up chessboards for some of my email correspondence games to look over when planning my moves. I have also found that I do better taking my time in a slow correspondence game where the time control is often at least five to ten days a move, versus OTB where depending on the phase of the game I may have precious few minutes of clock time.
I have only played in three tournaments so far in 2005, and have recognized the need to play as often as possible to be in better shape to play in a tournament environment. When I say "in shape" I mean both mentally and physically. More tournaments means more experience!
I am the founder of a new chess club in my community, and even though things started out slow, we have reached our first-year anniversary...! Sadly, we are still way short on members. Counting myself, for most of the year there have been only three of us coming regularly, and now one has had to drop out due to a job change. I have to reevaluate what I am going to do to promote the club, and try to attract more members who are not yet aware of our existence.
I would also like to see our community be the "host" of a decent-sized tournament. Perhaps with some sponsorship, this could someday turn into a large open tournament that would attract titled players (i.e. grandmasters, etc.). Wishful thinking on my part, I know...but it would be awesome!
In the course of my study of the game, some chess masters throughout history I have grown to admire include (in roughly chronological order): Paul Morphy, Adolph Anderssen, Mikhail Chigorin, Joseph Henry Blackburne, Aron Nimzowitsch, Jose Raoul Capablanca, Alexander Alekhine, Paul Keres, Mikhail Tal, Boris Spassky, Robert J. "Bobby" Fischer, Jan Timman, Viswanathan Anand, Garry Kasparov, Alexei Shirov, Vladimir Kramnik, Alexander Morozevich, and the young Judit Polgar, Hikaru Nakamura, Sergey Karjakin and Magnus Carlsen! Watch out for these four!
FAVOURITE CHESS QUOTES: "Chess is life."~Bobby Fischer..."Chess is mental torture..."~Garry Kasparov..."Some sacrifices are sound; the rest are mine."~Mikhail Tal..."Why must I lose to this idiot?"~Aron Nimzovich