Check And…Errr…Mate…

July 12, 2017 11:06am Published by Jules Smith in Whimsy On A Wednesday 28 Comments

Chess, The Queen

Satirical Snapshots Bringing You Whimsy On A Wednesday!

A few weeks ago I mentioned that I play chess online. In hindsight, broadcasting such a fact may have been a mistake. Since that time I have been inundated with game requests. For a nanosecond, I thought it may be because I’m having a glorious winning streak but then my paranoia and mentalist brain kicked in.

Why are all these people suddenly coming to my board? And how are they finding me since I don’t publish my username?

I tried to have an open mind and took on the first few but had to decline others. There’s only so many games of chess you can concentrate on and 20 is already too many. Hideous mistakes get made like this because you can’t remember if you’re black or white and what your strategy was. This results in foolish errors and competitive stress disorder. Because nobody remembers who came second.

It’s all very chatty

In all my years of playing chess, I have rarely experienced any chat. The most you’ll get is a grunt, a sigh, penetrating stares and furrowed brows. There’s no room for banter. This is a battle.
When playing online it’s very peaceful, although you do get the occasional comment since the app providers find it necessary to add a message box.

Very infrequently, you’ll get a short interaction:

“Good luck” <- – this spurs me on because it’s psychological mind play.
“You too” And that’s it.

You might get a “gg” for good game at the end. Fin.

That’s sportsmanship and totally acceptable.

Until it’s not…

For some reason, my new Machiavellian opponents have taken to poking the bear.
I was quite taken aback by this as online chess isn’t where I’d expect someone to go trolling for cheap thrills and banter. In my naivety, (cough, splutter) I am of the opinion that chess players are quite staid, nerdy, logical and smart. Obviously, I’m an exception.

Of course, I can ignore these banal and pitiful comments but where would be the fun in that when playing ‘psychology for sport’ is one of my favourite pastimes. It’s a well known fact I have to react to stupidity.

I’ve taken a few screen shots of some of these inspiring conversations for your perusal. I have blocked out the full usernames to protect the guilty. Everyone deserves at least one chance to get back in line.

How is this relevant to a chess game?

Or this:

It gets better…

Oh really?

I couldn’t answer for ages because of my shyness…

What a pillock.

Seriously? Where is this person’s logic?   And how is he so good at chess?   Do these guys actually think that a chick is going to fall for this?  I don’t even know this person.  We’ve never met, shared a drink or a crisp sandwich or an episode of Game of Thrones.  We’ve not even had a normal conversation.  I don’t even know what he looks like!

Talking of which, quite alarmingly some of these people commented on my photo.  Err.. what photo?  I’ve not put any picture up on this app… And I can’t see anyone else’s picture so what’s going on?  Turns out, I must have once logged in through Facebook and so my profile pic shows up.  Gee, thanks, Facebook.

In order that you can understand the following conversation, here’s my profile picture.

Jules Smith, Author, Writer, Blogger

That’s me and a horse at a bar in Nashville, Tenessee.



That’s what they are.  Now you may think I’m being a bitch. Correct. I am. And rightly so. I mean what happened to chivalry? You wouldn’t get a proper cowboy acting like that. What happened to gentle chat, hand written letters, and getting to know someone properly?  Well, this is what’s happened:  It’s now turned into cheap smutty online talk within hours and likely followed up with a dick pic (akin to the cat bringing a dead bird in) within 24 hours. Nice.

In temper, I went to my Facebook to get rid of my chess app pairing but couldn’t find it anywhere.  Instead, I came across this joy:


It’s like a non-stop social virus.  I very nearly went under the radar but then this happened…


Two of the chat muppets above only went and BEAT ME.   I can’t begin to tell you how annoying that is.  In fact, I was so mad that I hurled my phone across the room and broke the screen which resulted in me having to go out and buy an iPad Pro and Apple pen.  I’m now going to colour in instead.




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On-line interactions with strangers of this sort seems to invite trolls. I’m not intimating that you are, but the world out there (the unaccountable cyber world) is. Because it is. Better to engage in face-to-face chess bloodsport with a clock and a flesh and blood opponent – possibly in the pub? The problem then is finding somebody worthy of the game. Chess is a game where finding a worthy opponent is important. Any on-line chess gamer isn’t worth spit because they cheat, and knowing you as I do, I doubt that you engage in that sort of bottom feeding. They will look at your move and then use the computer to emulate Fischer or Morphy and find what they did with pieces in the same position. In effect, they will hijack a master. In a way, that’s what computers do and computers these days play exceptional chess if you get the high end software.

I’m not saying that you can’t examine play and copy style. When I was a teenager, I studied Paul Morphy’s games and utilized his style to defeat opponents up to winning a regional state championship. But that was when I was in high school and computers were the size of a house and had less computing power than an I-Phone.

Thus the only value is a human player, eye-to-eye, possibly with having fish and chips delivered during the match so you can throw the other off while you scarf down (nasty) mushy peas…that’s chess.

I only know one person who plays chess here and already play them online. I guess there’s a chess club somewhere but I don’t have the time. I’m too busy working, writing and screwing up the last 3 chapters of my novel. This is why I need instant chess to focus and calm down.
The thought of someone using software to cheat makes me incensed! What’s the point of that? However, it makes sense considering the quality of some of the grammar in the chat bubble.
I’ll play you over a chip buttie next time you’re in town, Larry… And there will be a side order of VERY NICE mushy peas. If you can eat grits then you can put anything in your mouth and swallow. 🙂

I don’t like grits.

I’m not from the American South.

My grandma tried to get me to eat cream of wheat for breakfast and I usually barfed it. Oatmeal was ok, though.

I’ll be in town with the “squaddies” next month, but then I’ll be back in the UK in October. Play then.

I knew you had taste. They’re horrible.
I’ll sort you out on liking mushy peas – it’s all in the mint sauce. You need a Brit to show you and then you’ll get it. It will be a very good distraction whilst I corner your King. 🙂

Didn’t I tell never to talk to strangers naughty girl. Fact is you never could resist a challenge and that urge to win has got you where you are today a bonkers and very clever gorgeous girl

I love it when you’ve been on the magic mushrooms.

I think your last comment to me on that subject was, “You pick up strangers like a dog picks up fleas!”
But thank you, such lovely compliments.x The online chess trash are not worthy of my time. 🙂

Lucky for you I don’t know how to play chess very well or you’d have gotten a ping from me, too. I think I might’ve checkmated you in NYC, anyway.

Well, it’s a known fact that New Yorkers are good at chess. I’ve played some of those regs on the street.
But, M, you are a gentleman: intelligent, humorous a right good boat rower, fabulous friend and competent art critic to boot. (you can pay me later. Sterling only) Thus you are exempt from my wrath and can chess ping anytime. 🙂

Of course they beat you, Jules! They’re chess players! Who are mostly men who find it difficult to get laid. And therefore react like dogs in heat when they’re playing against a blond woman in a cowboy hat. Simples!

If you want to be treated like a lady, take up ballroom dancing. There might even be an on-line version of it now.

I guess that is pretty simple, Mr Gorilla Bananas. No class whatsoever.

Oh, well allow me to retort on the dancing front! I happen to have gold medals in Latin and ballroom dancing and also taught salsa a few years back in my spare time just for fun. This is just as bad. Here you get men who come to dance with women who need partners so they can try and get their filthy mitts on a bird and use it for the bank later. I’ve thrown many a scoundrel out of my classes. As for online ballroom dancing, err, well, that sounds like a euphemism….

LOL! I’ve had some pretty interesting solicitations via social media as well, and all my profiles say I’m happily married with kids. Weirdos. Needless to say, I’m a pro at blocking people. =)

That’s cos you’re pretty and smart, Crystalicious.

Well, I guess it’s good to know you’ll never have to be lonely, even if it is with someone who resembles Gollum. ;P

Well, if you’re gonna be like that about it, please can I have my dick pic back?

Hahahahahahahaha! That made me spit my tea out!

No. You can’t. I’m using it as my new FB profile pic 😉

Of course you are an exception. Hence (hence?) the word exceptional. What is obvious to me is that you are logical and smart even when you’re not being logical and smart, which in my book is impressive. Twenty opponents… wow, I figured you were competitive but you managed to surprise me once again, Jules. But did that idiot write , “You can ask me questions too”? Really? “If you are a little bashful, let me help”…. What? Does that moron realize he’s talking to a full-blown woman who would kick his juvenile ass cowboy style? Lots of folks out there are animals with a thin layer of deceptive humanity. No? Anyway, thanks for the excellent comments, as always. You rock.

8 years hence and you still say lovely things to me. Most people roll their eyes at me, call me weird, psycho or bonkers. I call it jealousy 😉 I’m impressed that you see me as smart and logical despite this! You are gifted, Blue.

Oh yes, these were real comments out of the mouths of babes. Chess chumps. How rude!

I agree with that – there’s always a thin veil of disguise. Gotta have your wits about you.

You are the rock 😉

check, mate: it’s British

I play checkers. in the park. all the birds beat me. the pigeons. I enjoy crisp sandwiches. but I like my bread soggy. I am so sorry. for everything *)

Very British, mate.

Sup bird? You talkin’ to me or that pigeon?

Why can’t everything just be salamanders serenading to reading cats in a magical smoke room full of doughnuts? *)

We’ve got to stop crossing lives like this Jules! You have chess chumps, and I’ve been getting Skype pervs and Twitter twats. If we didn’t need social media and the online world for as much as we do, you’d be catching my laptop as it sailed past your window after I tossed it from mine. Yes, some days I get so irritated I just might make it that far. Gonna have to start doing some screen caps of my own. Brilliant! Kick. Their. Asses. >:)

No, I need someone who I can discuss these anomalies with, Tracy. I’ve not yet experienced Skype pervs or Twatters but no doubt that avenue of pleasure will be opened to me at some point.

I don’t throw my laptop because it’s my means to getting paid. I slam the lid on occasion. My phone is fully protected with a silicone back and front which means I can toss it and it won’t break. Well, that was a complete lie. 🙂

> a dick pic (akin to the cat bringing a dead bird in)
Funny you mention that: A Chinese euphemism for a infant boy’s bits is “the little sparrow”. If that seems strange, consider what a new-hatched sparrow (sans feathers) looks like, especially if it’s slumped over sleeping. Makes sense, sorta, eh? Nah, you’re right. It’s still strange. Anyhoo, ’round these parts I’d always heard the expression as “the cat bringing you a dead *mouse*” or “a dead thing”; for some reason “dead bird” is a new variant to me.

As to your chess, erm, suitors, are they *all* from the subcontinent? I was puzzling over auld###’s slightly strange syntax, until the jati### and Rehan Lawrance stuff showed up.

Hello Mike, it’s very good to see you back here and know that you’re a glutton for punishment!

Well, thank you for that imagery. I will never look at a sparrow the same way again. The Chinese got that one spot on.

When you say “’round these parts” I hope I’m not mistaking that for innuendo… 😉

Yes, they all appear to be from the subcontinent though “auld” claims to be from Ireland. He also changed his name to auld### from Raw Hide. I’m not sure if he was trying to impress me with cowboy banter or that’s what was on his mind. Anyway, I didn’t upset him enough because he’s come back along with an (hold on, just let me look them up) Ugly Casanova, an ElCloser and a P380 <~~~ I think that's a gun. Or is it a bird? I'm very puzzled and on high alert. This could be the biggest wind up of the century or Karma hates me. It's a close call. Do you write a blog, Mike? I ask because I like the way you write so I'd go and visit. If not, maybe you should before auld and his stimulating syntax beat you to it.

>I like the way you write
That’s mighty kind of you (blush) but I’m not nearly interesting enough to sustain a blog. As to the writing, all I can say is that I try to steal from the best.
Haha! Didn’t occur to me. Now we’re even for the “sparrow” thing 😛

Oh, I’m sure you are.

You steal?! GASP!

Even for now. Let’s see what happens next! 😛

Online chess trolls, who knew. And I’m not an expert but mushy peas are alright; mind you I also like grits, being a loyal son of the Empire AND the South.

I know! I thought this was a “safe-space” I’m deleting them as each day goes by.

You like grits? wash your mouth out! Ewwww…

I call that sitting on the fence, LSP – Pick your side! 🙂

[…] not the chess chump sort but just as […]

[…] challenger requesting a game.  My instinct was to decline because we all know this is the reason I stopped playing chess with strangers.   However, having found a sense of calm from recent meditations and too much bloody soup, I decided to […]

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