Thursday, November 12, 2009
Okay boys and girls, this is going to take a lot of preparation...do not proceed any farther in this post unless you have an hour or two. Or take it in small bites, whatever, but I'm not going to put up the run-of-the mill fluff, this time.
First, in order to understand the title of this post, go watch the fabulous Blunderprone production Rocky Errant Picture Show.
Three years ago I published a little piece called The Crowley-Parsons-Heinlein-Hubbard-Cruise Connection. Please read Part I, Part II. At the time I wrote it, I had not yet seen this article--Whence Came the Stranger: Tracking the Megapattern of Stranger in a Strange Land. And this, about the author of that--"Adam Rostoker: Walking Between Worlds, Not of this World (any longer)."
Ain't the Internet a blast?
And by now, you may ask yourself, what's the point of these seemingly unconnected peregrinations? Quo vadis?
Well...Crowley was a chess player, apparently of master strength, but see at the link how a "mystical experience" put him off pursuit of serious chess. Heinlein certainly appreciated chess, as it appears in a number of his works, including the first move of a "blindfold" game between Captain King and Lazarus Long in Methuselah's Children (Lazarus plays 1. Nf3) and in Time Enough for Love where Lazarus plays his Grandfather and allows Grandpa to recapitulate an entire Steinitz brilliancy (Lazarus foregoes using a computer-generated improvement).
UPDATE 11/14/09: Francis W. Porretto, Proprietor of the great Eternity Road, points out:
"...including the first move of a "blindfold" game between Captain King and Lazarus Long in Methuselah's Children (Lazarus plays 1. Nf3)..."
Uh, no. The game was between Captain Rufus "Ruthless" King and Andrew Jackson Libby, Heinlein's mathematical genius. King, who had White, opened 1. e4; Libby answered 1...Nf6.
Unfortunately, we never learn how the game ended. However, an earlier paragraph notes that Libby had "long ago given up the game for lack of adequate competition," so we can guess.
(Thanks for the correction, Fran. My ed. had the day off...)
I am intensely interested in chess, also in "human potential," self-actualization, self-improvement and all of that jazz. As the ACIS begins to rise, Bold as Love and Wangalicious, I think my love is to concentrate on the mental aspects of chess and improvement, the qualities of mind and spirit that might make for chess success and life success, the joy that can be from more than just winning games.
More, soon. And now, let us ROCK: