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Monte Python's Flying Circus
Compiled by fredthebear

This sketch comedy was broadcast by the BBC between 1969 and 1974. The top players were Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin.

We have a local player, an older medical doctor with much more important demands on his time, who always plays the same chess openings. The doctor plays the Torre Attack as White, and the Caro-Kann/Slav defense as Black. (He does not play gambits or Indian Defenses.) Everybody knows this is what the doctor plays -- every time. Yet, the doctor wins more than he loses because he has become very familiar with his openings over time, and plays slowly, thinking about the opposing army before he moves. The doctor says he does not memorize opening lines deliberately, but he has acquired such knowledge from so many replays. (He did some research on the Panov-Botvinnik Attack.) The doctor simply plays over grandmaster games in these three openings, and only these three openings. Other openings are shunned. He does not bother with any other openings. (Of course, the doctor sampled other openings many years ago before eventually deciding on his safe, solid choices.) He refuses to debate the French defense w/the rest of us! This careful, restricted approach is how the doctor makes use of his limited time for chess and finds success. The triangle pawn structure of the Torre/C-K/Slav defense is sound, the piece development is active enough, and basic middlegame plans are familiar. He gets a fair middlegame and does not keep repeating the same mistakes over and over. It works for him. FTB knows the doctor has read a few chess books -- and many chess book reviews for possible discussions of his repertoire The doctor reviews the master reviewers like Silman, Donaldson, Watson, Bauer, Hartmann, etc. but rarely buys the book -- he just borrows FTB's books if he likes the review. We have discussed various books, mostly just the reviews. These are the books the doctor has read, likes, and KEEPS: - Chess the Easy Way by Reuben Fine, Sam Sloan. Playing strong chess is not so easy as it sounds, but the doctor has all the listed principles/tips memorized from this book. You might want to read "Easy Guide to Chess" by B.H. Wood, and "The Right Way to Play Chess" by D.B. Pritchard first. - The Middle_Game in Chess by Reuben Fine, Sam Sloan ( -- NOT Burt Hochberg's mistake-prone revision). - Capablanca's Best Chess Endings by Irving Chernev. The doctor admires Capablanca and Karpov, but he says the Queen's Gambit has way too much opening theory for his tastes. - Opening Systems for Competive Chess Players by John Hall. This helped him lock in on his repertoire (he avoids playing fianchettoes). - Two opening books by Eric Schiller about his same repertoire: Play the Torre Attack, and Complete Defense to King Pawn Openings. - The doctor has read other chess books, but he has deliberately mentioned these around the club. He's not worried about keeping chess secrets; this is what worked for him. - He also has some Foxy Opening videos, but got rid of others.

The doctor steadfastly follows/gives this bit of advice: There are so many, many different openings to choose from! Pick just three with White, one defense against 1.e4, and one defense against 1.d4. "It is better to be a master of one trade then a fool in many." The doctor does not care about the latest opening theory for a tiny plus advantage as sought by grandmasters because "I usually don't play grandmasters, so why worry about 'em?" He's happy to have an equal game w/a secure position, waiting for his opponent to hastily slip up. He tells FTB to stop buying so many chess books and just play more chess, but play carefully. "Don't play unless you're focused, determined, ready to concentrate deeply. Thinking is the nature of the game." The doctor is always telling the kids (including the big kids w/grey hair) to "Slow down, look around! Plan ahead for both sides. Always know what will happen next before it happens. Never guess, never hurry -- that's when you make mistakes." How many times have we heard "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,"? He watches but does not play blitz chess in public at the club (just rated tournaments at slower time controls when his schedule allows), but he does play chess against the computer some. The doctor maintains an Expert rating, having beaten his share of masters from time to time.

* For Intermediate and Advanced Players:

"Monte Carlo 1902" edited by A.J. Gilliam
Pillsbury vs H Wolf, 1902 
(E00) Queen's Pawn Game, 36 moves, 1-0

French Def Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 1/2- Mutual promo draws
E Rousseau vs C Stanley, 1845 
(C01) French, Exchange, 58 moves, 1/2-1/2

French Def Exchange. Monte Carlo 4.c4 dxc4 (C01) 1-0Q+ & fork R
Kieseritzky vs H Buckle, 1848 
(C01) French, Exchange, 40 moves, 1-0

French Def Exchange. Monte Carlo 4.c4 dxc4 (C01) 1/2- B vs N EG
Kieseritzky vs H Buckle, 1848
(C01) French, Exchange, 57 moves, 1/2-1/2

French Def Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 1-0 Misfire on isolani
Harrwitz vs Horwitz, 1849 
(C01) French, Exchange, 33 moves, 1-0

French Def Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 1-0 Piling on backfires
J R Medley vs J Finch, 1849 
(C01) French, Exchange, 69 moves, 1-0

French Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 1-0 Zig-zag to mating square
Anderssen vs K Mayerhofer, 1851 
(C01) French, Exchange, 48 moves, 1-0

French Def. Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 0-1 Ns are coming
Deventer vs Gouda, 1856 
(C01) French, Exchange, 14 moves, 0-1

French Def: Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 0-1Incomplete score
Reti vs Fahrni, 1911 
(C01) French, Exchange, 24 moves, 0-1

French Def. Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 0-1 Greed is punished
NN vs Livingstone, 1941 
(C01) French, Exchange, 10 moves, 0-1

French Defense: Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 1-0 Tactics
Fritz vs Hertneck, 1998 
(C01) French, Exchange, 25 moves, 1-0

Albin CG 3.e3/French Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 0-1Back Ranked
B Gross vs M Kastor, 2000 
(C01) French, Exchange, 23 moves, 0-1

French, Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 0-1 Dropping minor pieces
A Stubljar vs Bor Harej, 2002 
(C01) French, Exchange, 20 moves, 0-1

French Def: Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 1-0Criss-cross mate
C Briscoe vs D Spence, 2004 
(C01) French, Exchange, 23 moves, 1-0

French Exchange 5.Bb5 (C01) 1-0 Bxf7+ starts Kside attack
Bologan vs A Aleksandrov, 2008 
(C01) French, Exchange, 39 moves, 1-0

French Exchange 5.c4 (C01) 1-0 Rook endgame
Tkachiev vs Morozevich, 2008
(C01) French, Exchange, 57 moves, 1-0

Philidor Def (C41) 1-0 Black center P fork trick; W batteries
M Sebag vs S Yudin, 2010 
(C41) Philidor Defense, 30 moves, 1-0

Queen's Gambit Accepted: General (D20) 1-0 34.?
Timman vs Panno, 1982 
(D20) Queen's Gambit Accepted, 41 moves, 1-0

Game 6 in Great Brilliancy Prize Games of the CMs by Reinfeld
J Mieses vs J Mason, 1901 
(C01) French, Exchange, 39 moves, 1-0

French Exchange. Monte Carlo birth?(C01) 1-0 N corralled on rim
Marshall vs Swiderski, 1904 
(C01) French, Exchange, 32 moves, 1-0

French Defense: Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 0-1
Swiderski vs Marshall, 1904 
(C01) French, Exchange, 48 moves, 0-1

This starts as an Albin Countergambit and transposes
Tartakower vs Reti, 1909 
(C01) French, Exchange, 39 moves, 0-1

Petrov/French Defense: Exchange (C01) 1-0 He missed 28...?
Alekhine vs Bogoljubov, 1942 
(C01) French, Exchange, 64 moves, 1-0

French Defense: Exchange Variation (C01) 1-0 24.?
J Klinger vs Glek, 1990 
(C01) French, Exchange, 26 moves, 1-0

French Def: Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 0-1 W did not 0-0
R Kuijf vs Korchnoi, 1992 
(C01) French, Exchange, 31 moves, 0-1

French Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 1-0 Exchange Sac, Pins
Waitzkin vs A Friedman, 1993 
(C01) French, Exchange, 33 moves, 1-0

French Defense: Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 1-0
Waitzkin vs E Moskow, 1993 
(C01) French, Exchange, 65 moves, 1-0

French Defense: Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 1-0
Waitzkin vs J Bonin, 1996 
(C01) French, Exchange, 67 moves, 1-0

French Defense: Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 1/2-1/2
Waitzkin vs Shaked, 1997 
(C01) French, Exchange, 42 moves, 1/2-1/2

French Def Exchange Var (C01) 0-1 Q forks EAD & LPDO
R Sander vs Carlsen, 2002 
(C01) French, Exchange, 29 moves, 0-1

French Def Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 1-0 Greedy R trap
S Vysochin vs I Zakharevich, 2003 
(C01) French, Exchange, 20 moves, 1-0

French Def: Exchange. Monte Carlo / QGD ACG (C01) 0-1 28...?
Zhao Xue vs Bu Xiangzhi, 2005 
(C01) French, Exchange, 33 moves, 0-1

French Def Exchange 7.c4 (C01) 1-0 He walked into it
Nakamura vs S Williams, 2012 
(C01) French, Exchange, 37 moves, 1-0

French Exchange 5.c4 (C01) 0-1 Bishop sac destroys pawn shield
Jakovenko vs Grischuk, 2012 
(C01) French, Exchange, 25 moves, 0-1

French Exchange. Monte Carlo (C01) 0-1Itching to get rid of IQP
P Walta vs M Arribas, 2012 
(C01) French, Exchange, 32 moves, 0-1

French Def: Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 0-1
A Gubajdullin vs A Riazantsev, 2003
(C01) French, Exchange, 76 moves, 0-1

French Def Exchange 5.c4 (C01) 1/2- White has dbl dbld pawns
E V Kovalevskaya vs M Bluebaum, 2015
(C01) French, Exchange, 62 moves, 1/2-1/2

French Defense: Exchange. Monte Carlo Var (C01) 1-0
N Miezis vs T Glimbrant, 2015
(C01) French, Exchange, 64 moves, 1-0

38 games

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