Al The Plumber

Nauseating Bridge Quotes: Charlie Parker

CHARLIE PARKER: (cross-referenced to Warren Rosner, Doug Ross, and Allan Stauber)

Warren Rosner and Doug Ross left the bridge playing area in the RPI Student Union to get grub from the vending machines. They wouldn’t be gone very long, but I very, very hurriedly set up a smother play on Rosner, my LHO. This play has been written up in many bridge books and publications, but it is rarely seen in real life. Rosner had Kxxx of spades, Parker had Axx, Ross had x, and I had QJT9x. To make it, I could not afford to lose a trick to the apparently “non-finessable” K. If you are not familiar with the play, please check it out on the web or in bridge books. Then hope you get a chance to use it some millennium.

Parker and I were Vul; Rosner and Ross were NV. I told Parker to make sure we got to 4 no matter what happened. I only had time to give Rosner a very attractive lead, but another one would beat 4. I inadvertently had given Ross xxxxx & Qxxxx in the minors.

When they got back, the bidding proceeded as follows:

Stauber: 1

Rosner: Pass

Parker: 2

Ross: 2NT (showing the “minors”)

Stauber: 3

Rosner: X (penalties)

Parker (the good soldier): 4 !!!

Stauber: You #%@^!&(%@&(*%)#!%^#*&^%#@*&^%()#&(^#*(%# !!!!!

After the usual type of Student Union disorder was finally restored, Rosner also hit 4 . Fortunately, he made his attractive lead. I therefore was able to execute the smother play as planned, and thus 4X was made.

A bunch of RPI players trotted off to the Johnstown, NY Sectional in search of some highly revered masterpoints that would eventually lead to life glorification by the ACBL. I went along even though I was really only interested in the 72 virgins that I would get to endplay for each time I was subjected to a suicide squeeze by one of my partners. By the way, thus far I have processed 72,000,000 virgins. In the Qualifying Session of a 2-session Open Pair event, I played in another excellent contract that made. It merely depended on a double squeeze, including one opponent holding all of the K, Q, J, and 10 of diamonds so the diamond 9 would be a threat card.

A few rounds later in the session:

Charlie Parker (at approximately 1,000,000 decibels): AW RIGHT, DOUBLE- SQUEEZE!

For some other players sitting in our direction, that may have been a slight clue how to play that board. We qualified second, only ½ point behind the leaders. But we might have been in a better position relative to some other pairs, if they had not perhaps benefited from Parker’s slight indiscretion. Fortunately, Rosner and I had the best final session and won anyway. Nevertheless, the event was a disaster. My virgin endplay total had remained the same!

Nauseating Bridge Quotes: Jim Maffucci

JIM MAFFUCCI: (cross-referenced to Mike Smolen and Allan Stauber)

Maffucci was my doctor for many years when I lived up North. Despite what follows, he probably would be a good player, but he doesn’t play very much. He is one of those players who know just enough to be dangerous.

Smolen and I had just finished mangling in the afternoon session of a National Pair event. Maffucci and his accomplice in crime had also played in the event. We met up with them for piggification between sessions.

This hand was brought up immediately, if not sooner. Maffucci was South on the following auction:

South West North East
2 NT Pass 3 Pass
3 Pass 6 (*) Pass
7 !!! Pass 7 Float

* = Alerted as Smolen!

Result: Down 1.

Smolen (to Maffucci): I PERSONALLY ban you from playing the Smolen Convention!

Nauseating Bridge Quotes: Arleen Lehman

ARLEEN LEHMAN: (cross-referenced to Allan Stauber)


N (Stauber) E S W (Lehman)
2 Pass 4 *


*: The bidding is up to 4 and I haven’t even finished counting my points!

She only had 29 HCP’s!!

Incidentally, that session was quite a momentous occasion for several reasons. One was that I was feeling out of sorts, and/or suits(**). Anyway, I only preempted three times. (OK, I’m not sure. Maybe I suppressed some of the others. I didn’t realize at the time that this would be part of a trivia question years later.) What was the total number of cards that my partner had in support? A mere 17 — two 6’s and a 5!!! With those kinds of trump holdings, I’m bound to have too many losers in the suit. I’ll just have to find better partners!

** Probably more indicative of my normal “health” was the time I preempted 9 times out of the first 11 hands!

Nauseating Bridge Quotes: Robert Lebi

ROBERT LEBI: (cross-referenced to Eric Rodwell and Allan Stauber)

Lebi (a passed hand responder), Rodwell, and I were discussing whether opener should have made a slam try in some Dreary matchpoint situation. There was clearly a very good chance that it would be cold or at least odds-on. So we were rating the non-slam try on a 0-100 scale.

Rodwell: ZERO!

Stauber (always the defender of the hopeless): It should get something. It could be right.

Rodwell: OK. 7.

This is not a great quote, but I just want to record my influence. I got Rodwell to change his score by an INFINITE percentage (7/0) X 100% = Infinity, or at least a high grade Nissan). Regardless whatever score higher than 7 that I awarded, even if I changed to agree with Rodwell, I came down by less than 100%. (No math comments need be sent to me.)


Ghostwritten by Casey Stengel with Assists by Yogi Berra

Doctored by Al, the Plumber of the Depths of Lunacy

This wasn’t one of the problems for which I rcvd an avalanche of answers. Perhaps a contributing factor was that unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately for anyone who otherwise might have read my blog, was down from Monday on. I want to squelch rampant rumors that it was because they very recently had added that very same blog!

Apparently, the disaster was due to a huge ISP problem, but they stated that they now have a new, more reliable ISP. Of course, unless an H-Bomb hit the other one, it’s hard to imagine anything that wouldn’t be better! After my buddy, Al the Programmer, gets done raking Microsoft and their Windows henchpersons over the code (I mean coals) in a soon to be released diatribe, it appears that he should go after the offending ISP and many others that are also clueless about their most basic functions.

In any case, here are two replies from Jonathan Weinstein, followed by my politically incorrect, and, as usual, incoherent reply.

1. Mr. Stengel,

When I first read Mr. Cohen’s article, I noticed that declarer has an alternative 100% play — if you play a *high* spade from dummy at trick 2, you will always have the entries to ruff out the diamonds whether this is ducked or won. (Maybe the article actually mentioned this; I don’t remember.) Now that the plumber has stimulated a second look, this appears to be better than the other 100% play. If lefty wins trick 2, he may be tempted to play his partner for a diamond singleton, and then you’ll have a chance to make 5. Maybe unlikely, but it comes at no cost. You can afford to play either the Q or a middle spade from dummy, according to which you think conceals your holding best.

Is this the end of the story? It seems like a very small sliver of an edge, perhaps not enough to warrant the Plumber’s attention. What more is there? It ain’t over until you unclog the drain.


2. Another small chance

Playing a middle spade at trick 2 also creates the possibility that lefty, with stiff A of trumps, won’t know which suit is safe to exit and plays a heart. Now you have chances at an endplay to make 5, whether legitimately if lefty has KJ tight in clubs or the like, or illegitimately if he doesn’t unblock. I think this line is definitely superior to the ruff at trick 2.

We could also debate whether Joanna’s play is worth the risk: not if East-West believe their count signals.

Al the Plumber’s reply:

[First, I feel that I should make the following statement in the interest of full disclosure (sort of):

By an exhaustive study of Jonathan’s e-mail addr, I have discovered that he is a Professor of Business at Northwestern University. Furthermore, one of his specialties is “testing supposed experts who make probabilistic forecasts that may be strategically motivated”.

By a strange intersection of bridge and many other lunacies, it happens that some associates of mine, have also been communing with Perfessor Stengel re supposed experts in numerous fields besides bridge. One of them, Al the Trader, is working on “The Second Annual Running of the Bulls(hit)”. In the invaluable First Edition, Al took on Harvard, Warren Buffett, and Monkeys Throwing Darts. Naturally, the Monkeys had no trouble going bananas and beating Harvard. Of course, Al is known for being bananas 24/7, i.e., out-banana-ing even the Monkeys.

This year, the performance of the endowment funds at other universities with “highly rated” business schools will be included in the contest. Shouldn’t they do particularly well? It goes without saying, or if you prefer, with saying, that nothing Jonathan or any other member of academia states in my blog will be used to further deduct from the evaluation of any business school, including Northwestern if they are included in the study.

There – now I’m sure Jonathan and everyone else is greatly relieved.]


Hi Jonathan,

Now let me see if I understand this. You claim that the 5 experts (Rodwell, Moll, Woolsey, Armstrong, and Prescott) who supposedly played this “trivial” 4S deal “correctly” actually mangled it! Unbelievable!!!

According to my high level calculations, that means that 5 + 5 = 10 out of 10 (kibitzed by Larry) butchered it! In addition (or other arithmetic), I believe that means that [(10 – 10) / 10] * 100% = 0% got it right!

I will try to have Surely patch me in to Casey’s channel and get back to you. In the meantime, if you or anyone else would like to further expound, expunge, or exfoliate anything to help “unclog the drain”, please do so. Many folks know that I need all the help I can get.


alias The Plumber of the Depths of Lunacy

Nauseating Bridge Quotes: Mark Lair

MARK LAIR: (cross-referenced to Paul Maier, Lew Mathe, Mike Smolen, Allan Stauber, and Eddie Wold)

Smolen and I had racked up a superb system result by playing in our 4-3 heart fit against Lair and Wold. After the round, there was a bit of a discussion about this triumph. I had bid Checkback after his 1N rebid, but he bid 2 on a 3 card suit! I brilliantly rose to the occasion, and I raised to the optimal 4 contract. He had recently started playing some West Coast version with other LALA-Land players. His 2 bid was correct for that form of Checkback, and he thought we were also playing that version. However, he had overlooked a slight detail. He had never told me about any of this! As I was to learn, perhaps there were other factors in play.

Smolen told this story about him and a guy named Paul Maier. They were playing in a matchpoint event. Smolen bid Checkback in a 1 minor-1S-1N auction, Maier responded 2 , and Smolen bid 4. It turned out that Maier had only 3 hearts (not per some convention; he was supposed to have 4). However, the opponents couldn’t figure out what had happened until it was too late, and Maier’s 2bid got his side a top! After the round, this conversation transpired:

Smolen: What are you doing? How can you bid 2 with only 3?

Maier: Those guys are f***in’ morons!

Later they were playing against Lew Mathe and partner. At the time, Mathe was one of the best players in the world. He was probably among the top 3 U.S. players, with some claims to being #1. The same exact auction occurred. Maier had 3 hearts again! The same confusion and top resulted! After the round, Smolen and Maier had another little chitchat:

Smolen: OK, you pulled that against the first two schmucks, but how can you do it against Mathe?

Maier: They’re ALL f***in’ morons!

Yes, indeed, that is the essence of successful bridge!

NS Vul. National MP Pair Event. W dealer.

W (Smolen) N (Passell) E (Stauber) S (Lair)
3 X Pass 4N (*)
P 5 (0/4) X 5 (**)
Pass Pass X Float


* = Blackwood.

** = Unspoken words, perhaps something like, “Well, I have one. I hope he misbid or was kidding! If he has 3, he’ll go on anyway.”

I had made sporting X’s with my 3 aces, and 5 X was -1 for 200. I think that was a top or very close to it for us across the field.

After EW had left the table —


Stauber: Nice bid on your QTxxx!!

Smolen: Yeah, I’m finally getting with the program (i.e., after my continual harangues to get him to make very aggressive preempts, especially at favorable. Nevertheless, I have to admit, not necessarily always quite that aggressive)! If you can’t beat them in the play, you’ve gotta beat them in the bidding!! (Not that I agree with that part about the play either!)

Nauseating Bridge Quotes: Bill Kreps

BILL KREPS: (cross-referenced to Joe Dell, Howard Chandross, Emil Jensen, Allan Stauber, and Anonymous)

I observed some curious defensive play by the opponents as my partner, Kreps, declared 4 in a Regional MP Pair event. The woman on Kreps’ left had bid hearts but she trumped the first time that Kreps played one! Not only that, she ruffed with the A!!!!! No one said anything, and the play continued. Later the woman started following to heart tricks!

After the play was over, Kreps called the director. He ruled that we got the standard revoke penalty.

Anonymous woman: But I can’t lose the ace of trump!

Anonymous director: Lady, you just did it!

P.S: I only played once with Howard Chandross as a partner. It was in another Regional MP Pair game. Once again, a woman to declarer’s left revoked with the A in a spade contract, and thus lost it! Apparently, it’s contagious.


Ghostwritten by Casey Stengel with Assists by Yogi Berra

Doctored by Al, the Plumber of the Depths of Lunacy

If you have not read “CAN’T ANYBODY HERE PLAY THIS HERE GAME HERE?” – INTRO, I suggest that you do so before proceeding to any of the cases.


I’ll try to get a few old cases out of the way early on. Probably only a small number of people have seen any of them though. I mentioned this one to some folks after I communed with Casey. If you already know about it, please refrain from commenting until others have had a chance to take a look.

Note: There are too many names on my distribution list for just one mailing. This makes public commenting extremely difficult without a blog or something similar. If you wish, you can access the case and make comments on Alternatively, you can e-mail them to me. I will then pass them on to Casey for his conclusions. We will only use your name if you want us to.

After having seldom played for eons in “The Big Time”, I was studiously studying stupendous recent play to get myself in shape for more active combat. I figured that my approach should be pretty much the same as that of my stunt double (and another A. S.), alias The Terminator, alias The Governator of the Money Pit. I’d practice with numerous types of tricky weapons to deal out destruction to opponents. Of course, if any partners or teammates would ever be so foolish as to get in the way of my itchy trigger finger hands, massive collateral damage would be dealt to them too, and it would serve them right.

I stumbled across an April 2007 Bridge World article by Larry Cohen entitled, “A Blue Ribbon Pair”. In the 2006 final, he followed boards 5 and 6 for a full session. I have attached the pages that relate to board 6. The quality is not great, but is a lot better than the “bridge” that Larry kibitzed. Perhaps someone can make better copies for me to provide to others. However, it may not be possible to attach any files on some other websites where this article appears. If you want to buy the issue or a subscription, please reference Moreover, you really should act super quickly if you want the issue. After Casey works over the guilty player(s) [I’m not saying how many there are for any case] more than Larry did, it may become a collector’s item! Incidentally, you shouldn’t mention my name to Jeff Rubens, the chief deal cooker and hand washer, or anyone else at The Bridge World. For some inexplicable reason, they think that anyone who takes advice from me is a great candidate for a Schmuck Coup(*), and can be charged at least double, and probably redouble, the usual price.

Let’s get on with the board. Per Larry, “Had I not seen it with my own eyes, I would not have believed how the field mangled this deal.” Incidentally, in his words, Larry has known me “since before I (i.e., Larry) was born!” OK, I know. That was a life-altering tragedy for him. You want to mourn for Larry now, but there’s plenty of time for that that later. Anyway, his statement about the deal is incredibly obstreperous, at least for him! More typical is when he says near the end of the article that the caliber of play was “a bit disappointing”. I think that is a “bit of an understatement”, maybe even for his non-bellicose self.

Here is the hand:

Dealer: North

Vul: NS


Q 9 8 5

K 5 3

A J 5

10 6 4



9 7 4

K Q 10 8 6 4

K 8 7


A 6

Q 8 6 2

9 7 2

Q J 9 2


K J 10 4 3 2

A J 10


A 5 3

At all 13 tables in the section, the bidding started P-P-1S. W always bid either 2D or 3D, and sometimes E supported one way or another. South played 4 10 times. North played 3N once and West played 5 X twice.

Per the article, Rodwell, Moll, Woolsey, Armstrong, and Prescott made swift work of 4 . They won the K lead, ruffed a diamond, played a spade, and regardless what East did, South could ruff the last diamond by getting to dummy with a trump. After throwing the opponents in with a club, they were endplayed. +620.

However, the other 4 declarers, Shivdasani, Yates, E. Prahin, Narita, and Cappelletti Sr. all butchered by playing a spade to hand, ducked by E. Nevertheless, they all were +620! Either they guessed well later, or the defenders made things easy for them – sometimes by E playing a club quack and then shifting if it held.

J. Grue made 660 in 3N when East led and continued a diamond after winning the A, and then West switched to a heart after winning a diamond trick.

Bruno and J. Feldman declared 5 X as W, and went for 800.

Larry also reported scores and an example of the play from the other sections. Joanna Stansby ducked the K and West continued, so she had two diamond tricks. Then she guessed hearts for 650.

After reading the article, I immediately contacted Surely’s Institute. They patched me in to Casey so I could read it to him. I asked what he thought about the bad play. I could hear poor Casey rolling over in his grave even faster than usual. Then he started spittin’ extra large balls of fire over the medium at me! Before the channel burned out, I heard him say:

“Don’t cut my throat. I may want to do that later myself!”

I think Casey meant that there was even more manglization than I had read to him! What could he have been referring to? Can you meet his tough standards?

Go to it!

Al, the Plumber of the Depths of Lunacy!

*The Schmuck Coup is a real bridge play that I’ve seen work even against expert schmucks. Nevertheless, due to the worldwide apathy about the pathetic lack of corresponding high quality bridge literature, the valuable maneuver gets virtually zippo coverage. Fortunately, I am scheduled to play some hands in a dinner game against Steve Carrell, and expect to gather enough material for a treatise on the subject. I certainly wouldn’t want to offend any feminists who similarly yearn for hair-raising animal adventures. I’ll simultaneously be taking discussions of The Pusillanimous Coup (don’t panic – there is a shorter name for it) out of virgin territory when the rubber hits the road.

P. S. Standard Boilerplate: Remember, Casey is interested in real life bridge and sound procedures, not doubledummy success or result merchant type stuff, unless otherwise specified. For example, even if you get the best possible result, but don’t go about it properly, he’s going to BATter you — and you had better hope it will only be verbally! That will be unmerciful enough. He may refer the worst of the spaced out offenders, whether on offense or defense, to Ming.

This series is primarily about lunacies during the play. Sometimes only one player might have made an unrecognized error. On other hands, many players may have made the same mistake. Examples in which there is more than one type of error also could be lurking out there. Unless stated to the contrary, please consider the entire case as presented — regardless how many players, tables, plays, hands, etc. are given. In any situation, Casey is yearning for those who find every edge (but no spitballs and the like those times!), no matter how big or small it is.

However, you may opt to go further. It can’t hurt to get some extra practice! Please feel free to make any other comments about bidding, how other vulnerabilities or scoring conditions may affect the deal, etc.


Ghostwritten by Casey Stengel with Assists by Yogi Berra

Doctored by Al, the Plumber of the Depths of Lunacy

[Note: Over the eons, there have been some PLAY problems that are unusual because all, or almost all, players and analysts consistently wind up endplaying themselves into the wrong hand — often that of an opponent.  Furthermore, that is true even with loads of time for analysis, help from computers, etc.!

I see that Stevie Beanie and his Faythful Sidekickback started something like this, maybe more so for bidding problems. Of course, for lots of those kinds of deals, each expert often just will tell you what a genius he is, regardless whether or not his pet bidding methods worked on the given hand. Down and down they go, round and round they go, where they’ll stop, nobody knows. OK, OK, maybe the absolute max they would stop at on only one deal is a “mere” 7600. 🙂

Anyway, these play problems DEMON-STRABLY have de-geniusized lots of “experts”! Let’s see if you can outsmart them. Please remember to try to be as precise as possible.


This is the long-winded preamble to the ramble contained in the hand autopsies in this series. If you already have read it, or you just can’t stand it, please preempt yourself out of this part whenever you want to, and proceed to any CASE #. Fortunately, you only have to duplicateboard, i.e., torture, yourself a max of one time with this introductory material, unless you are a bridge masochist. In that case, you might “enjoy” reading it for each part of the series. Anyway, this is the exciting background scoop for this rather unusual group of bridge lunacies.

Casey Stengel, alias the Old Perfessor, is best known for his remarkable record as the manager of the New York Yankees baseball team. In 12 years with them, he won 10 American League pennants, and 7 World Series, 5 of the latter consecutively!

Few people are aware that he was also an incredible bridge expert, and indeed, the world’s greatest manager of bridge hands! That’s bridge as in the card game, not as in the Brooklyn Bridge, which Casey also frequently conquered to play the Dodgers in a bunch of those World Series games. Moreover, he was well suited to finessing deeply as a spy because he previously had been a player and manager for Da Bums, as the Dodgers were “affectionately” known, even when they had strong teams.

I was excommunicated from most ACBL National Follies for eons due to all kinds of heresy, especially in the bidding. However, recently they let me start playing again. Apparently, they were desperate for more entry fees, dues, etc. Obviously, they weren’t fussy about whatever kinds of riffraff cross ruffians they contracted to cough up some dough.

Casey’s baseball records don’t particularly thrill me since I never have been a Yankee fan. However, when I decided to resume playing in the National League, I figured, “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em!” So I subscribed to Casey’s channel at the Surely MyClaim Is Valid Psychic Institute. Of course, she is world renowned for bridge séances and flicks such as “Two for the Seesaw” (re bridge partners’ battles for bottom dog) and “Those Old Boards”. Oh, wait. That last one was really “Those Old Broads”, a famous movie about Florida bridge. It features the strip and endplay techniques of hookers, udderly lacking in finesse, who play at the female chauvinist cow Wednesday IMP game. In order to remain non-vulnerable to detection, it stealthily passes all around Palm Beach County. It was filmed during the same time that many of their insignificant others (mainly husbands and boyfriends who have suffered from innumerable Zero Tolerance violations at and during the hands of the old broads) were wheeled in from nursing homes and insane asylums to play in the Boca Raton IMP game.

An acting manager, the defensive Warren Beat-It, actually runs Surely’s joint. He also happens to be her brother, and the top star, producer, and Groner of other bridge epics. Perhaps the best known is “Reds”, a classic regarding the state of bridge in the former Soviet Bridge Union. The grand leaders only permit decks to have hearts and diamonds, so they can delude the masses about the blackness of their dictated contracts with the powerful. They wind up slamming them in the deal, and often into the slammer besides. Worse yet, many tens of millions of players have been subjected to killing leads.

Of course, similar multi-delusionalism also has been duplicated widely for players of multiple nations, regardless of whether or not they play Multi. Somehow, those professing to lead them to a bridge to a grand future are always psyching.

“Dick Tracy” is also one of his classics. In it, he carefully builds postmortem wrecreations of individual “bridge” deals that involved the rigor mortis participation of up to 4 DUMMIES who played at each table.

Another of his works is “McCabe and Mrs. Miller”. McCabe is chronically depressed about his partner’s leads after she opens a weak two. He devises an ingenious way to support Mrs. Miller while either telling her to lead her suit, or by bidding her to lead a different suit. In addition, he has a way to try to get the hand played in his own suit if that is his preference.

OK, so I surely will need to access the channels of the Sure Claimer and her brother from time to time. Now I’ll get back to Casey’s starring role in all of this show biz stuff. Sometimes, he also calls upon the talents of Yogi Berra, his partner, catcher of bids and baseballs, and 3-time American League Most Valuable Player. Clearly, Yogi is best known as the greatest philosopher and logician of all-time. As incredulous as it may appear to be, there is bored talk that on some occasions, such skills may be of value in bridge.

Sooo — as I practiced by reading through some old and new bridge books, magazines, and columns, I often would contact The Psychic Institute, and then ask Casey to comment on the play and anal-ysis. Many people think that Casey first used the quote “Can’t anybody here play this game?” in 1962 when he became the manager of the N. Y. Mets, an expansion team. Their main distinktion was that they were the worst, or to be charitable, one of the worst baseball teams, ever. Sportswriter Jimmy Breslin even (ab?)used that title for a book about The Mets’ innumerable misplays.

Some old-timers and relic historians claim that Casey actually said, “Can’t anybody play this game here?”, or “Can’t anybody play this here game?”, or “Here’s looking at you, kid!” No, wait a minute. I think that last line was either said or not said by Humphrey Bogart, another card. Here’s how it went down. He decided to teach Ingrid Bergman a card game during the filming of Caseyberra, uh, I mean Casablanca. Bogie had to make a tough choice between teaching her strip poker and strip squeezes in bridge, but finally he decided to endplay her into the former. Somehow, the quote made it into the film. “As time goes by”, it evermore becomes one of the most famous card game lines of all time, especially in Hollywood — an extremely delusional version of ace and king asking bids.

Anyway, I’m a progressively higher bidder (at least in bridge) so to be compassionate to those who are conservative about first calls, I won’t quibble about a few words, especially in a lingo as absurd as English, disirregardless if they are here, there, or everywhere. Therefore, I entitled Casey’s diatribes, “Can’t Anybody Here Play This Here Game Here?” I can assure you that Casey often made similar remarks for many eons, starting long before 1962. Typically, he did that when he saw “expert” bridge maneuvers and commentary.

In this series, I’ll attempt to explain the types of things that inspired such splendid oratory from Casey. Among the amazing brain twisters that Casey and Yogi will analyze are some that were butchered in the pre-, during-, and post-mortem — sometimes by many of the best players and writers in the world! In various cases, the manglizations were not detected for years or even decades, at least to our admittedly rather limited worldwide historical knowledge of the hands! Furthermore, such types of hands may not be so unusual in the area of bidding machinations, but these will involve play problems. Generally, you will be trying to find improvements in the play of the defenders and/or declarer.


Even though it is not the primary intent, comments about the bidding are also welcome for learning purposes. Likewise, so are remarks about the bidding or play under different vulnerability or scoring conditions.


See if you can meet Casey’s tough standards! Show him that you really know how to declare and defend in this here game here, there, and hereafter!

Please keep in mind that Casey & Yogi stress bridge fundamentals and scientific play. They probably will not be duped very easily by supposedly spellbinding common “wisdom” and propaganda, result merchant nonsense, and doubledummy solutions that are not reasonable in real bridge. They just don’t care to go along like lemmings with the rest of the turkeys. On the other hand, they’re not very fussy about spelling and other lingo junk. They want players to search for the best possible lines and every edge, even if they are only a smidgeon better than others are — of course, all within the legal limits. In the long run home, that is winning bridge.

Or to put that into a little perspective:

1. In many games, any expert doofus usually can make the “obvious” plays. A real player exerts some brainpower to find the times when the “obvious” is wrong. But listen up! Sometimes, such improvements may not be optimal either, even if experts claim otherwise.

2. Even beginners can come up with the “right” solution for many specific hands if they can see all the cards (although there are plenty of tough doubledummy problems too). However, these are not doubledummy hands, unless otherwise stated.

3. It is fine with Casey if some competitors chose to weigh themselves down unnecessarily, as long as they are not his players. His goal is to have you use your brainpower to beat them and their ill thought out ideas, glitzy jewelry, hairy resistance, etc. when you get to the finish line.

Thank goodness! This part is over!

P.S.: For many types of non-bridge Lunacies, please reference —

My Restarted Facebook Page: Al the Plumber

Twitter: @Al_the_Plumber

Or send your Email address for inclusion on the bridge and/or non-bridge free mailing lists.






Nauseating Bridge Quotes: Edgar Kaplan

EDGAR KAPLAN: (cross-referenced to Warren Rosner and Allan Stauber)

Kaplan (from The Bridge World): Stauber and Rosner, exhausted from their previous overbidding, failed to reach the cold 4 game!

Kaplan (from The Bridge World): Stauber, having doubled for a diamond lead, unexpectedly found himself on lead, and failed to find the killing diamond lead!

(Note: I still say my lead was reasonable in the given situation! Anyone who laughs at this should be shot, or better yet, forced to play for all eternity in the ACBL.)