Since chess is already in the news, it's a perfect time to talk about our experiences and memories with the iconic game.
Here's some of my earliest memories with chess.
- It was one of the games, when very little, I used to play with my father. I'm almost certain he always let me win, but he was kind enough to make it an interesting match. That's probably because I'm more competitive than most of my family, but I appreciated the fact that it was something both of us would do together. We played on scout trips, family holidays, and a couple of times in those public chess spaces outdoors.
- At primary school, for whatever reason, the deputy principal's grandfather would sometimes sit down with me and we would play some matches. I don't think I learned much, if anything at all, beyond the basic rules. My primary school didn't have a lot of extra curricular activities for kids that were decent in class; despite being a Catholic school, it was never really flush with money.
I don't remember a great deal about that old bloke, although I remember enjoying the quiet respite of our games.
- I went to a chess club in Camden a couple of times, around an hour or so south-west of Sydney. It was a pretty competitive environment, and although I was more competitive than my family I wasn't at the point where zero-sum games was something I actively sought out. That'd change later in life (thanks Counter-Strike, StarCraft), but while I was at the chess club I was content to fuck about, make stupid moves, and generally give two shits.
Kids who take chess really seriously, at least the ones I met, were really unpleasant. I ended up spending more time playing cards through high school and as I got older; it was more social, and there was something enticing about devising a strategy around what you can't see.
What were your experiences with chess like?