OK, so. The Eggs and I have gotten together and we are going to be doing a cartoon short. If you would like to be part of this epic production, here’s your chance.

Mostly, we’re looking for crowd noise and we need some more variation in voices. So record yourself saying some of these things, email them to egg@ (the domain name):

1. A horrified crowd member: “Oh, no!” “Help us!” “Won’t someone save us?” or the like.

2. A grateful crowd member: “Yay!” “Yes” “You saved us!” “Awesome!” or the like.

3. Someone saying: “Look out! He’s jaywalking!” or the like.

No, the Eggs will not be saving a jaywalker from being hit by a car (or hitting the jaywalker).

Ilyumzhinov kind of liked Qaddafi

With the recent demise of Qaddafi/Gaddafi/Khadafi, USCF members everywhere muttered to themselves, “Yeah, yeah, but what does that have to do with my life as a chess player?”

Glad you asked! It turns out that the current FIDE President seems to have been a bit of a fan of the Libyan strongman:

And the eccentric Russian politician Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, who is also the head of the World Chess Federation, said that Colonel Gaddafi’s death was a “tragedy” but that he died as a martyr and would be reincarnated.

Mr Ilyumzhinov made a surreal mission to Tripoli in June, where he met with Colonel Gaddafi as an unofficial mediator and played a game of chess with him. Yesterday, he said in a Russian newspaper interview that he had spoken to the Libyan leader numerous times on the phone since. He claimed that Colonel Gaddafi had not been scared of death: “Not a bit! He believed in reincarnation.”

Not that you’d expect anything else from someone who claims aliens visit him and let him on their spaceship and that chess originated from an alien civilization.

Source: Gaddafi’s death breached the law, says Russia

How to commentate on sports, part 1


As my plans to start up the Mascot Sports Network have begun, I’ve been watching the Worldwide Leader to check out their secrets.

Lesson 1: Use “momentum” as a tautologous, more analytic term for “having won the last game”.


“The Texas Rangers just won Game 2 of the World Series” is not very insightful.

“The Texas Rangers have the momentum going into Game 3” is also not very insightful, but sounds much more analytical.

I don’t have photographic memory of 15 years ago

The last post had the wrong position, which Derek pointed out is a pretty easy draw for White.

I was definitely down a Knight for a Pawn, and the pawn structure is what gave me some hope. Black’s King had no quick access to the Kingside (via f8-g7), giving some sort of position like this (Black to play):

Does the extra Pawn and White’s pawns being not so far along make any difference?

If Black’s King could get to the Kingside, I would have been dead pretty quickly:

1. … Kf8 and it looks like White has nothing.

Chess endgame analysis

I was the king of chess in high school, losing only one game against schoolmates. This made me look like a complete baller. One of my friends knew another awesome player from a different school.

You must understand that “awesome” was a relative term; I was probably a low to mid class C at this point. Nonetheless, my friend wanted to see “The Clash of the Titans” and we finally got the opportunity one weekend.

My pride did not have a fun day. Despite having White, I never had any serious winning chances. We got down to roughly this position:

Unfortunately, we had to stop at this point. I argued that I had enough to draw the endgame, while my opponent thought he clearly had enough for a win. We never resolved this and it would have been nice to finish it off.

After over a decade, I still think Black can’t win. But endgames can be weird.

What do you think? And give Black the first move.

Rush Limbaugh is no better than the “lamestream media”

Visiting rushlimbaugh.com, it’s no surprise (or crime) that the stories have a conservative slant.

What I didn’t expect is an obviously deceptive front page headline that highlights Limbaugh’s ignorance.

Limbaugh’s claim is obvious: Obama Invades Uganda, Targets Christians (transcript from the show). Nicely feeds into the “Obama is a secret Muslim” belief without saying so.

Limbaugh goes on to claim the LRA is Christian and fighting for a democracy within Uganda. Making sure, of course, that his listeners get the message “Obama is trying to wipe out Christians”.

At the end of the transcript, there was this:

Is that right? The Lord’s Resistance Army is being accused of really bad stuff? Child kidnapping, torture, murder, that kind of stuff? Well, we just found out about this today. We’re gonna do, of course, our due diligence research on it. But nevertheless we got a hundred troops being sent over there to fight these guys — and they claim to be Christians.

As well informed as Limbaugh claims he is, it’s odd he doesn’t know anything about Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army. They have been operating for over two decades and show up in the news from time to time.

Even if he didn’t know anything about them, it takes a minute of research to find out why the LRA is considered a “bad guy”.

The US troops will have permission to operate in Uganda so it’s not an “invasion”. The LRA is also not Christian in the sense that most people in the States understand Christianity.

Limbaugh is a great entertainer, but sacrifices presenting the full truth to hold his audience.

Leonard of Quirm is responsible for naming Earth’s telescopes

You have a chance to become somewhat immortalized.

The Very Large Array, which is a very large array of radio telescopes in New Mexico, is about to complete a major set of upgrades. To celebrate, they want to rename it to something a bit more creative. Can’t imagine why.

Telescopes seem to have a tradition of rather uncreative names, such as the Very Large Telescope, the European Extremely Large Telescope and Overwhelmingly Large Telescope.

You can suggest a new name at http://www.nrao.edu/namethearray/, although it doesn’t look like they will provide any prizes for your trouble if your name is selected.


For the first time in 27 years, I will be costumed for Halloween.

No, I don’t feel deprived.

No, I haven’t given out candy (primarily because no kids show up).

No, I won’t be in a sexy nun or sexy nurse outfit; thanks for asking.