President’s Message – October 2018

September 26, 2018 sequoia No comments exist

I want to make one more pitch for the annual Non-Life Master Sectional next weekend, October 6th & 7th at SOCBC. Please see the signup sheet at the club and volunteer to help with food regardless of whether you will be playing at the Sectional. For our newer players, this is the perfect place to try tournament play right at our own club. You compete for Silver points at Sectionals, and for Gold points at Regionals. Both colors are needed as you advance in rank. Be sure to firm up your partner and/or team now and go for silver together. If you have any questions, speak with any of our Teachers, or with Tournament Manager Frances Krause. We expect to have a great event and want you all to be part of it! Click here to see the tournament flyer. Please ensure that your partner and you have identical copies of the convention card you are playing for the tournament.
Do many or any of you still read printed newspapers delivered to your homes the old-fashioned way? If yes, we hope you did not throw out these recent ‘throw away’ papers: the 9/27 San Clemente Times, the 9/28 Dana Point Times, and the 9/28 San Juan Capistrano Dispatch. Thanks to Janie Matlaf SOCBC got some excellent publicity in the “Aging Well” section of these three local papers. If you missed it, you can catch it online at their website under the tab “Special Sections – Aging Well.” or on our website. They also added our beginning class information to their online calendar of events.
Anna Kreucher is at least one reader of the Orange County Register. She pointed out a noteworthy piece from September 20th about Football Coach Tommy Prothro. Sports fans may remember Prothro from his coaching days with the LA Rams and the San Diego Chargers. Turns out bridge was his favorite hobby. He was an excellent player, and for many years traveled to international tournaments with actor and bridge partner Omar Sharif. The Register article recognized bridge expertise as a special skill set, reporting “Bridge can be learned, but it favors the gifted.” (That’s you – the gifted!) “It demands memory and intuition, to figure out if the dangerous cards are to your right or left. It rewards organization, to avoid getting stuck on the board with no access to your own hand. And it lives on a terse form of communication…. Quirks are understood. Precision is necessary.” Tommy Prothro was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame, but we all know that becoming a Life Master was one of the great thrills of his lifetime.
Consider Running…
As we approach the end of the year and our upcoming Bridge Center election, I urge each of you to consider running for one of the three seats that will be open on our Board of Directors. We benefit from a combination of Open Players and Non-Life Master Players on our Board of Directors. The experience that veteran players bring as Board members helps keep us on track. Newer players bring fresh ideas and are aware of what is going on in our NLM games, classes and mentoring. We need YOU. Please give this some thought and contact any member of the Nominating Committee or current Board Member, if you have any questions or would like to run. The Nominating Committee members will be announced shortly.
The Fall season means a new season of bridge lessons. SOCBC is fortunate to have a wonderful constellation of teachers for all levels, and an enthusiastic group of people ready to acquire or improve their bridge skills.
Beginning Bridge Classes
Two series for brand new students began the last week of September: Marti Moss ( on Tuesdays and Sharon Rippy ( on Wednesdays. The teachers are willing to catch up any who missed the first class, so tell your friends and family members to come on down and join the fun. Both beginning teachers provide a steady stream of new players for our club. Our next series for brand new beginners will not start again until Monday mornings in January with Janie Dober.
Classes for Advancing & Intermediate Learners
Hal Binder ( recently began a class on Defense. Hal’s classes are always well-received, and those who take his classes benefit from using what he teaches in their games. I know as I am one of them.
Jane Dober ( began a 2/1 and 1 No Trump forcing class on Monday, September 17. Contact Jane to join this series. She provides a hands-on approach with the opportunity to play boards based on what she has taught.
Robert Irani ( begins a 2-session class on Inverted Minors on Tuesday, October 9 and 16 .
Gary Waldron ( will begin a series on No Trump: Bidding and Play of No Trump Hands, starting on Wednesday, October 24. This is geared toward intermediate and advancing players to help them become comfortable playing No Trump contracts. Gary will also address topics such as opening No Trump with 5-card majors, and how to choose between No Trump and Suit contracts.
Debbie and Alan Gailfus ( recently began their “Post Game Show,” a free review of interesting hands played during the Tuesday games. They welcome both Open and NLM players to stay and bring questions or just participate in the discussion.
Mentoring classes will begin again Thursday, October 25 when I will be teaching Jacoby 2 No Trump, along with a host of volunteers who will sit with participants to help them apply the content of the lesson.
The Friday morning game for 0-99 players continues with a mini-lesson and game directed by Trudi Hanscom ( and Susan Bristol (
We have just initiated a Saturday morning 0-99 game and mini-lesson with our Club Manager Gail Schneider ( We hope those of you who are available for weekend bridge will get in on the ground floor and make this a part of your Saturday morning routine. Gail will get you prepared for the NLM Sectional, and then resume on future Saturdays.
Remember to ask about our Buddy Program for students who have recently finished a beginning course and want a partner who can ease the transition into the NLM afternoon games. Contact Dan Thorlakson ( for information on obtaining a “buddy” or volunteering to become a buddy to new players.
The Education Committee is a group of volunteers who strive to provide a positive learning environment for SOCBC. The exceptional learning opportunities at our club help us to attract new players and retain existing players. Some of our teachers were named in this message, but there are many more who are equally valued contributors to our success and we appreciate every one of them. Sunny Foster chairs the group, and I participate as President of the Board, along with Janie Matlaf, Frances Krause and Maggie Briskie. Please join me in expressing our appreciation for their efforts. We will be offering many new courses over the coming year including these topics and many more: Ethics and Protocols, Hand Evaluation and Re-evaluation, Losing Trick Count, and Completing the Convention Card. Please contact any of us with suggestions or feedback.
Thursday Morning Social Bridge.
If you are interested in signing up or learning about these opportunities to play and learn, please email (1st and 3rd) Jane at or (2nd and 4th) Marti or Frances at
Friday Night Social & Duplicate Bridge.
Our Friday Night Social and Duplicate Pot Luck is offered on the fourth Friday of each month, the next of which falls on October 26th. Please email your reservation to Frances Krause at
A few years ago, we purchased an AED – Automatic External Defibrillator and CPR Kit. The American Red Cross conducted a training session at our Bridge Center for our Game Directors and other interested members. Please refresh your knowledge or become acquainted with the use of the AED and CPR Kit by viewing the free YouTube video at If you agree to volunteer to act in an emergency at our Club and take the course, we will reimburse the cost of the certificate of completion. This also applies to those who have taken the training in the past and wish to take a refresher course. Please contact Odile Gendreau for more information and to volunteer.
October 21 we will be celebrating Halloween at our monthly Sunday Unit Game. WITCH of you will win the prize for best costume? Spook your opponents, take all the tricks you can, but also come early to enjoy the eats and treats at noon. Game time is 12:30 PM.
If you would like to write an article to appear in the President’s Message or elsewhere in the SOCBC Newsletter, please contact me. I am interested in including fresh ideas, anecdotal experiences and varied perspectives. I would like to acknowledge this month’s contributors, Anna Kreucher, Janie Matlaf and Sunny Foster.

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