• A little USCF sales irony on a Fischer themed item

    From crufty@21:1/5 to All on Mon Jul 9 15:57:42 2018
    XPost: rec.games.chess.misc, rec.games.chess.politics, alt.games.chess
    XPost: rec.games.chess.play-by-email

    I remember in 1971, when they had a big shindig at the Manhattan Chess
    club to raise money to, I think, get Fischer to the Candidates'
    Matches. The shindig was a blitz, 5 minute, tournament with as many
    IGMs, IMs and mere masters as could be scraped up in NYC and the
    surrounding area.

    Partway through the tournament, which Fischer crushed, he lodged a
    complaint with the Manager of the Manhattan Chess club: the Queens
    were too sharp.

    The Manhattan had moved into new digs at 14 E. 60th St. and had
    undergone a complete physical renovation. Gone were the old wooden
    chess tables that the greats of the first half of the 20th Century had
    played on, gone also were those scruffy, sometimes downright filthy
    and well worn chess pieces that can be seen in photographs of the very
    young Fischer at the Manhattan Chess Club. Now the club had gotten,
    along with new chess tables from some big deal designer who had
    re-designed everything in the club, down to the cork impregnated
    wallpaper, new chess pieces. For the next several years one of the
    chores for the club's Manager had been to try to glue the weights back
    into the pieces and pawns and then get some green felt stuck to the
    bottom of them and get them back into use on the tables before the
    next batch had to be repaired. But the thing that was of import this
    day was that the Queens of this set had coronets that slanted outward,
    and were fairly sharp. This feature was what had bothered Fischer's
    fingers as he swept through the opposition.

    Well, I was remembering this when I saw "The Fischer Triple-Weighted
    Plastic Chessmen by The House of Staunton" on the USCF sales Web site.
    Here's a link to the photograph of the set: <https://www.uscfsales.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/m/e/menfisch375.jpg>.
    I had to laugh. The spiky coronet on that Queen would have been
    something that Fischer would have absolutely refused to play a serious
    game with. But he's not around to object now, so the House of Staunton
    (and Howard Staunton isn't around to object anymore either) is going
    to make money on using Fischer's name for a product he would have
    refused to use.

    Well, maybe if someone unearths this USENET posting in a future
    millennium the archeologists will get a chuckle out of it too.

    --- SoupGate-Win32 v1.05
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