Good Morning Sicilians,
I don’t think the two or three of you reading this ‘en-pawnse’ know that one of our own was a self-proclaimed collegiate chess champion. Recently Dv’ant has been ranting about ‘still having it.’ You know what I mean; having that conversation in the mirror and buy completely into the lies. That said, without warning or word to anyone, he entered the Los Angeles World Chess Championships! Surprisingly he advanced to the semi-finals and actually gained ground on one of the tourney favorites; the Russian Alexei Shirov.
So for Dv’ant, Saturday was crucial. He was paired against Shirov and had the advantage of playing the white pieces. Here was a chance to cut into Shirov’s lead. He opened with pawn-to-king-four. Shirov answered with the Sicilian Defense, an aggressive choice. Dv’ant responded and forged ahead with the Catalan Opening which by its nature an unusual opening designed to avoid the Nimzoindian and Sicilian Defenses. Garry Kasparov used it in a match against Korchnoi in the 1980’s. It usually leads to a draw game.
Speaking to reporters at the postgame news conference, Dv’ant said his opponent erred at move one. Had Shirov chosen a quieter defense, he would have been better positioned to draw and preserve his lead, Dv’ant said. “I kind of wondered if this was something of a mistake for him,” expanding further he continued, “For Alexei, a draw would have been a great result.”
Typically these post match interviews are cloyed affairs, using understated guile and innuendo to intimidate ones competitor. I can tell you from personal experience Dv’ant is a highly skilled scab picker and as usual took it too far. He didn’t even bother to wait until his Russian opponent left the room, so Alexei heard every caustic sound bite. Shirov has a reputation for short fuses, and as our boy should have known, he rushed over breaking through the surprised reporters to get into our associates face. “You pig!” Alexei screamed having to look up to a grinning Dv’ant seemingly undisturbed by the assault. Patting the Russian’s head like a petulant child, our fellow committee member replied, “Don’t worry little man we shall meet again and I shall taunt you a second time” This only served to throw gas on the fire as the Napoleonic Chess Champion began to froth strutting back and forth as if pondering his next move. Just as he pivoted to turn back toward the now laughing Dv’ant, and as if possessed, the Russian leapt directly at our boy putting both hands around his neck knocking the big man to the ground. On cue, the room divided into two camps reminiscent of the cold war. Chairs, saucers and plates, and food went flying soon followed by chess players and aficionados from both sides trying to have a fist fight! It may have been the funniest thing I’ve ever witnessed!
Have you ever watched sissy’s fight? Arm slapping and writhing in pain followed by crying, much like what you’ll see during the World Cup Soccer matches. Shirov was still atop Dv’ant’s chest wildly swinging but not landing punches in spite of our associate’s inability to move. Once he’s on his back it’s like watching a turtle struggle to become upright.
Finally security showed up and scolded everyone sending the participants to their rooms while the damage was assessed. I haven’t been able to verify this, but according to the Bell Captain, Dv’ant rather than face paying for damages, was seen sliding out the back entrance caught on the security cameras. I believe the real reason for his stealthy exit is he flat out wanted nothing to do with the Russian in next day’s competition and forfeited. This said, I couldn’t be happier for our boy! Not only did he bitch-slap the pompous Russian genius, he got excellent publicity (reality show pending), and stuck the hotel for the melee. Makes a curmudgeon proud.