This is a topic that’s been in the forefront of my mind for years, so writing this comes with a sense of gratification in my own reflection, as well as in the privilege of sharing it with others.
As a forewarning, I’m no doubt going to be carried away in my romantic raving on the beauty of chess, its many merits, and its impact on my life. Before that happens, let me introduce myself as someone who is perhaps no more qualified to speak on chess than any other formidable tournament player. I do, however, believe my perspective as an artist, philosopher and fervent believer in an inexplicable connection between all avocations of life, will uniquely qualify me to pitch the game of chess to a wide audience. Many thanks to Pawns and Pints, KC for allowing me an outlet for my thoughts. That being said, I’m Dylan Mize, and my goal in this first blog post is not to transform anyone into a Grandmaster, but to capture the attention of a diverse group of people and convince you that chess is a worth while endeavor, as a pastime if nothing else. This is the first of hopefully many chess-related posts I will be making on a bi-monthly basis, and full disclosure: This will probably be the wordiest and gushiest of them all. If you’ve made it this far, you probably have at least an inkling of interest in the game, so please continue to read and enjoy a nerd’s ode to chess.
Chess is entertainment. Probably invented in India, chess has been a favorite worthy of even royalty for almost two millenniums. Part of it’s appeal is it’s just so interesting – there’s no cap to the amount of hours you can spend on this game, and this makes its entertainment value incredibly high. Beyond simply playing the game, which I never get bored of, there are countless books, videos, online articles, magazines, and other forms of material dedicated to it which can occupy your time for as long as you want. This is more than you can say about most games. It has been said the mark of a quality game is its ease to learn and difficulty to master, which describes chess perfectly; you get out of it exactly what you put in with virtually no cap. It can be played at any level, and should not intimidate those who have yet to feel the satisfaction of capturing an enemy piece. There are many ways chess can be played – many variants (e.g. Bughouse, Fischer Random, Suicide, etc) and many possible time controls (long, rapid, blitz, and bullet). Again, its replay-ability is infinite. Continue reading “What is Chess, Besides a Game?”