Saturday, April 22, 2006

Dream Job, Part Deux

I wrote this post sometime back on what I feel about dream jobs. And I wrote this post about how I feel about Chess. Then there are a couple of more posts related to chess, here and there. Read these at your own risk. The point of this labored introduction is that I once again feel I know what my dream job really is. And that I think would be if I were a chess journalist in Europe.

The glory is, of course reserved for the Grandmasters. But it’s too late for me to start a playing career, plus I honestly don’t think I have that kind of talent. But wouldn’t it be great if I could spend my life covering tournaments in Linares, Wijk Aan Zee, Monte Carlo and the other great venues for chess? Coz make no mistake about it, Europe is the Mecca for Chess. All the great players are there, popularity of the game is really high in those parts, the biggest tournaments happen there though there are exceptions like San Louis last year but really one-offs don’t count for much. Hell, I don’t know how many of you know that even our own Vishwanathan Anand lives in Madrid and holidays in Chennai and not the other way around.

The company I work in is currently organizing their annual sports meet for their employees. Obviously, your truly has taken charge of the chess event. From organizing chessboards and pieces for the tournament, to searching in futility for chess clocks in Hyderabad last week. From drawing up the schedule and tournament rules, communicating with the 16 team captains of their individual units, to clarifying inane doubts and conducting selection games for my own unit, nothing in my recent past has given me as much pleasure as these mundane tasks, done after regular office hours. And the tournament has not yet begun! I played a friendly game today as well after a long time (those internet games are never the same) with a pretty senior guy in my organization (I found that out only after I beat him, shit! Thankfully he was from another unit) I blundered horribly in the opening, gave away a pawn and a knight for nothing within the first ten moves. Almost resigned there and then but just gritted my teeth and fought back, slowly and steadily. Nana, if you are reading this, you would have been proud J . Forked his queen and rook with my bishop and won the exchange, won back one of his doubled pawns and followed it up with a neat little sacrificial combination involing an NxP on e3 which led to a win of a couple of more pawns. My queen and two rooks then combined very nicely against his cramped forces consisting of a queen, rook, knight and bishop. Full control of the e file helped to exchange pieces favorably at the right moment and by the time his king was his only piece left on the board on a5, my pawn had rolled its way to h2 and it was all over.

See, there’s redemption for me yet, within those 64 squares.

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