Chess vs The Super Bowl

Chess vs The Super Bowl

Hikaru Junction

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Chess vs The Super Bowl

I blog today while watching the Super Bowl, an American football competition, in the background. It is, to my eyes, not very interesting. But perhaps that is because I blog about chess. Chess is not an American tradition, wherein insane numbers of people tune in. It doesn’t even have its own TV broadcast, which I do hope will change. But the sheer rawness of the physical combat, in my humble opinion, are easily paralleled with what can be seen on the chessboard: not only the brutality, but the inventiveness can be matched. And anyone can play!

The internet makes chess accessible to all who have connections, as evidenced by the popularity of chess sites such as this one: Red Hot Pawn.

procyk–DeepThought RHP 2006

And all of chess is connected by similar threads and ingenious plays, like a knight move to the eighth rank of the f-file. These unusual moves showcase the spirit of creativity which imbues chess with its fun and whimsical ability, which itself allows unrestrained king hunts and chases to occur.

Alicia Abigail Gutierrez Mancillas–Klaudia Kulon World Junior Championship 2007

Even people with disabilities can play chess. It is unrestricted, and the only classification is pure, trained, talent and work put in. He, admittedly loses in this game, but Reginald Walter Bonham was born visually impaired, and later was World Blind, World Blind Correspondence, and British Correspondence Champions (not all at the same time, though, to my knowledge.) Mardle, victorious here, was also a great chess player while living with polio, who once beat GM Gligoric and associated with C. H. O'D Alexander, whom I have previously blogged about, and a biography of him can be found here:

Denis Victor Mardle–Reginald Walter Bonham Hastings 1953

However, the Super Bowl, as, to some fans, as opposite from a quiet, intellectual board game as possible, did have two slight, unintentional, acknowledgements to chess.

Devin Funchess, a player for one of the teams with an interesting last name, was on-camera several times, in effect helping football fans realize that chess is fun (probably not, actually, but it’s fun to speculate.) Additionally, one advertisement (for the company who controls Pokémon) even showcased chess as an area of supreme individual achievement next to running, American football (this is the Super Bowl, after all), and, of course, Pokémon (it was their commercial.) In summary, chess was one of two non-obligatory sports of individual achievement. That’s good, right? Here’s the commercial.

One day, perhaps, chess will be followed by as many fans as American football, perhaps even Americans. (There are rumors that they’ll get the World Championship staged in St. Louis.) Until then, we chess players will carry the torch forward, and spread its flame as far as we can.

Discussion thread: Thread 167443


Posted to Hikaru Junction

Hikaru Junction
Last Post
30 Jun 19
Blog since
27 Mar 15