Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Visiting Quebec

lso at the end of February, my friend Roman and I took a short trip to visit Quebec. Of course we visited the Quebec go club while there.

On the way up to quebec we very briefly stopped by a teahouse in Montreal. They happened to have a go set there, but it was a little strange...

The funny board

In Quebec we stayed with my friend Pascal Tremblay 5d (we were roommates in the IBA) His roommates were a girl that liked to smoke, and worked as a newspaper delivery person. And a guy who was much too sick, and loved music and beer. He was actually a very interesting person, he had little talent for the guitar or ukulele, or probably any other instrument for that matter, but still every night I was there late into the night he would play. He also had a little impromptu art studio in the living room, fully equipped with a tape deck. His CD player and DVD players didn't work. Most of his work consisted of manipulating found objects. Also he was an ice climber, and a history buff.

In the living room

After two days of much relaxing we went to to the university go club with Pascal. We met the members at a food court of a mall, and after eating we proceeded to the University. We ended up in the section of the school reserved for grade schoolers. The club room itself was the art room that the kids used. The tables were your regular school tables made of some indiscernible material coated with something similar to linoleum. We had two large bottles of soda and a bag of chips. The playing boards were of bamboo, and we used Chinese style stones to play. It was during the Olympics, so while we were playing go, the women were playing hockey on the computer screen. Through the windows, took up most of the wall, we could see a forest covered in snow, there was a surreal yellow-y light reflecting up out of the snow.

Well that was what the club looked like if you can imagine it from my description.

There were about 10 of us. I played a game with the Vice president, unfortunately I lost by 2 points or so. Roman had much better results. I think he won 3 of his games there. He seems to have improved a lot for no reason. Recently he came back from a 6 month travel around Europe, and for no discernible reason he grew from 11kyu to about 8 or 7 kyu.

Ice Wall

Photos Courtesy of Roman Kudryashov

Thoughts on KGS Insei League

This post is a little late, but it has to be done.

Last month I decided to play as much go as I could have, because I knew that I would soon (currently) be in school. I should probably mention my goal of shodan by euro congress, more specifically KGS shodan. Anyway to help motivate myself to play and study I joined Dinerschtien's league.

I managed to play 12 games in the league, another 25 or so on KGS and another 30 or so in person. While its not exactly as much as I could have, its still about 2 games a day. I did not utilize all of the resources of the league as I could have, but I did play the minimum required amount of games, and I did watch 3 or 4 lectures by Alex.

I found the lectures very interesting, and by far the best part of the league, the sgf game reviews were not as helpful. The main point of the league was motivation to play and it definitley did that for me. I was able to play much more seriously than I could previously, and I managed to bring my KGS level from almost 5kyu to the cusp of 2kyu. I might not have actually become stronger per-se but I learned a bit of self control.

The league would definitely benefit from having sections based on Time zones. Not having opponents who slept and worked at similar hours to me was by far the greatest inconvenience.

My school has started now and I noticed that between work, school, and Karate there is very little time for Go. As sad as this is I promise, (If you guys care at all ^^) that I will play at least one game a week so as not to forget the rules.

Oh and of course life and death on the train.