The Backwash Squeeze and Other Improbable Feats: A by Edward McPherson

By Edward McPherson

At one time the sport used to be even greater than baseball. at the present time bridge is performed via greater than twenty-five million humans within the usa on my own, with invoice Gates, a sitting ideal court docket justice, and the fellows from Radiohead between its devotees. during this lively homage, Edward McPherson recounts the colourful background of the sport and his makes an attempt to grasp its mysteries in time to compete on the North American Bridge Championships—despite being slightly capable of shuffle playing cards, not to mention play competitively. Insightful, humorous, and steeped in admire, The Backwash Squeeze is an affectionate view of a grand online game through an interloper attempting to make his approach into the internal circle.

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Additional resources for The Backwash Squeeze and Other Improbable Feats: A Newcomer's Journey into the World of Bridge

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Few contests boast this kind of egalitarian goodwill—imagine toting your racquet to Wimbledon and being allowed to step on the court. Back at the Manhattan Bridge Club, players walk through the door seeking the same thing—the company of like-minded obsessives. Bridge is a social sport that can overtake your life. At the club, no fewer than three couples in recent memory have met and married. ” In fact, it was companionship that first drew Arias to the game. ” So he switched to bridge, and in fourteen years he has accumulated nearly five thousand master points, more than sixteen times the requirement to become a Life Master.

One night, word goes through class that on Monday the club will be holding a supervised duplicate bridge game for beginners. This is hot news. As it happens, Tina and I are on fire that night, making some big hands that are going down at the other tables, and so, flush with victory, we agree to sign up. In the sober light of the next morning, I get a call from Tina. She wants to meet at the club this weekend to practice. Duplicate is what the big kids play, and while we’re anxious to get a taste of the action, it’s pretty scary stuff.

Not only am I a lackluster bridge player, I am an even worse spy. Michael Polowan is a man of easygoing contradictions. His scruffy beard and shock of dark unkempt hair seem at odds with the natty blazer he wears over a striped Oxford buttoned to the top. He is mild-mannered and polite, but arrives ten minutes late. It is about a month after my first bridge lesson with Jeff, who passed on Polowan’s number. For our first meeting, I had offered to take Michael to lunch. I was imagining something along the lines of a diner.

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