Monday, August 31, 2009

Hazel's Jokes!

Why do chess players play better in the summer?
That's when they bring out all the skewers!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Oriole candy guess

Congratulations to Jason for winning the candy guess. There were a total of 693 candies in the bag, and Jason guessed 910. Enjoy...but don't eat it all at once!
(of course, there were lots of other candy/prizes and cupcakes for everyone else to snack on!)

Big thanks to Corinna Wan and the rest of the Oriole instructors/helpers who made everything possible. And thanks to all the kids and parents who made everything so worthwhile.

Hope to see everyone again next summer...

Last Lesson for the Year *sob*

Today will be my last chess lesson scheduled for this year. For all my kind students, I will miss you all. Keep working on your chess, and don't forget to have FUN!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

More Than 700 Page Views!

Pleasant View Week 5

Another day at Pleasant View full of new and returning faces. Lots of good games, and definitely a huge improvement in puzzle solving! The kids were so fast (even for the advanced puzzles) and kept asking for more. It's great to see such enthusiasm. Unfortunately, the organizers have not yet been able to secure a space for future weeks. This may result in a less frequent program at PV. Check the website for future notices.

As for me, I'll be heading off soon, so I leave my best wishes with the players and organizers. It's been a great month working with all of you, and I hope to see everyone again sometime down the road. Keep supporting Canadian chess!

Hazel's Library Jokes

Today, my mind is set in library mode, because well...that's all I have planned for now. Check back for library updates, and enjoy these jokes!
What do chess pieces like to do in a library?
Read "rooks"!

How is Chess in the Library similar to a restaurant?
Both have plenty of forks!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Top Ten

Top 10 reasons to visit the library tomorrow
1. Play chess
2. Promote the game
3. Support community programs
4. Support juniors
5. Solve chess puzzles
6. Chess sets are provided
7. Become a volunteer/organizer
8. Get cool prizes --> see
9. Nothing better to do on a Saturday morning... :)
10. May be my last time at PV before leaving for university :(

Tomorrow --> Saturday Aug. 28 --> 10 am to noon

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Fun Chess Variant

Looking for a change? I thought up some fun chess variants for you to try today!

1) Triple Queens: The rooks are flipped over to become queens at the start of the game.

2) Confusion: For a confusing game....bullet/blitz game where rooks act like queens, and queens act like rooks, bishops act like knights and knights act like me, it's not as easy to break out of habits as you think, especially when pressed for time.

3) Special Capture: Captures are only allowed if you have at least two pieces attacking.

4) Restriction: Whatever TYPE of piece you last moved (P, N, B, R, Q, K) can't move on your next turn. Example: 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Nc3 would not be allowed, because white moved a knight on both move 2 and 3. However, 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bc4 Bc5 4. Nc3 would be allowed).

5) What, NO castling???????: No castling allowed. Extension of the game could also include no en passant, no promotion, ...

More chess variants can be found at:

Book Recommendation

Attacking Chess: Aggressive Strategies and Inside Moves from the U.S. Junior Chess Champion
by: Josh Waitzkin
When I first ordered this book, I was more attracted to the title than anything else. However, when I started reading, it was unlike any chess book I've read before. Simple, clear diagrams....detailed insight into key moves...and super easy to follow! I didn't even need to set up a board to follow along. Contains a variety of chess themes, and a look into the life of a chess champion. Great for all ages.

For $14, you can't go wrong! Order/reviews:

Chess in the Library Website is Up!

The beautiful Chess in the Library website is up and running. Please take a look:

All credit to Yutong, Yuanling, and the rest of their website team!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

More Than 600 Page Views!

Top Ten

For a little laugh...

Top 10 things chess players are good at (or think they're good at!)
1. Staring at plastic...or wood...depending on their style
2. Reading books
3. Writing blogs
4. Thinking while blindfolded
5. Withstanding the sound of a ticking clock (no wonder we can never get up in the morning!)
6. Talking in code (a.k.a. 1. e4 e5 2. Nf3....)
7. Eating bananas (they always seem to be in supply at Guelph tournaments...thanks Hal!)
8. Dreaming (of cash, and titles, and all that good stuff)
9. Arguing
10. Checkers

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Mandarin Lessons

My mother just set up a blog offering Mandarin lessons in the GTA:

For all ages and skill levels! Mandarin is one of the most common languages in the world, and constantly growing in its application. You never know when you might need it...maybe to talk to a Chinese grandmaster!

Reader Input --> Puzzle!

Submitted by Predrag Putic!

Reader Input!

Do you have a game or person you wish me to feature on my blog? Email me -->

Games: I will analyze games when I find time, and post my comments on the blog. Please, only interesting games, no major blunders.

People: I will only feature someone if I receive permission from the person himself/herself, or from a close family member. It would help if some background info is provided along with the name.

White to Move (Challenge for Advanced)

Of course I wouldn't let you off easy! Clue: The theme is pins, 2 moves to mate. Very pretty!

Black to Move (Challenge for Beginners)

Not so difficult, but pretty! 2 moves to mate.

Knock Knock Joke

I'm having a rather frustrating night. Maybe a joke will cheer me up. It's not my best one, but it'll do for now.

Knock Knock.
Who's There?
Chess Who?
**insert version here**

Version 1: Chess let me in, and I'll explain later!
Version 2: Chess let me in, it's cold outside!
Version 3: Chess let me in, or else I'll be stuck in this blog forever!
Version 4: Chess let me in, **insert your own caption here**

Monday, August 24, 2009

More Than 500 Page Views!

Wow, that was really fast! Seems like just yesterday when I first installed the blog counter!

Great News!

The Chess in the Library website is almost complete:
(designed by Yutong Luo)

Hazel's Jokes!

;) One of my favourite jokes which I thought up today:

Chess pieces in an economic crisis!
--> no castling
Can't afford to build (a castle).
--> no promotion
The queens are on strike (and the knights, bishops, and rooks don't wish to be bothered).
--> no jumping
Uses too much energy.
--> no king
He got a huge bonus package for exiting the game, leaving everyone else to struggle.
--> no pieces
They all got laid off.

Top Ten Questions continued... for the last two!

9. What's it like being a female in the chess field?
Hmmm...that's another tough one. Why? Because even though chess is dominated mostly by men, it's one of the only sports (see question 1) that is, for the most part, indiscriminate towards women (other than women's titles, and women's sections in certain tournament). When I play, I may get a bit more publicity than the average player, but I don't really feel out of place. Chess has so much wonderful talent and people, and almost everyone makes you feel welcome, no matter what gender you are.
In addition, when I teach/volunteer, I see a lot of boys AND girls with a lot of potential. The only thing that may prevent the girls from excelling like the boys is their feeling of attachment towards their friends and family, and shyness around others. I've noticed that a lot of girls will only enter events/tournaments if a friend or relative goes with them, and will ultimately change interests/quit chess because their friends/relatives decide that chess is not the right area to pursue. That's why it's so important to build a support base in the game, and fight the stereotype that chess is a game for males only.

10. Why aren't you playing now, and what are your future plans in chess?
I haven't been playing recently because I have other priorities to deal with. After my illness a few years ago, I've always had to "catch up" with my life. I have to try a bit harder with my academics, reconnect with past contacts, and relearn some chess theory. As I mentioned earlier, my teachers weren't too thrilled to hear about my trip to the Olympiad, so I had to try that much harder when I returned, hence the first reason why I didn't play in tournaments during the school year.
By the spring, my CFC membership expired, and I had to decide whether or not to renew it. Unfortunately, I've become very hesitant with my money as university approaches. Tournament fees themselves end up costing more than some textbooks, even without considering the time/money spent travelling to the rather inconvenient locations (inconvenient for me, maybe not for others...the locations themselves are great, just far away). Maybe it's because I took a course in finance, where the class is constantly reminded to take care of every penny! However, even without considering the dollar aspect, university requires a lot of paperwork and planning, which all add up in time. If only we had more than 24 hours in a day!
Though it seems I'm not involved in chess at the moment, don't get the idea that I'm doing nothing. I teach and volunteer in chess-related activities up to 6 days a week (thank God for Monday a.k.a. my only rest day = today!), and I helped out at the chess club in my school almost everyday at lunch.
In terms of future plans, they're not so clear to me right now, but I know I'll continue to play, teach, and volunteer somewhere down the road, especially after I graduate. I'll look for a chess club on campus, and I already have a friend at Laurier who wants me to teach her. Other than that, I'm open to see where my life takes me, and what opportunities it brings!

I hope that answers most if not all of the questions you've had of me, or at least now you know me a little more! - HAZEL

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Hazel's Game

One of my favourite games...
Great play by both sides. I remember thinking very hard (and for a long time) about my sacrifice! I had to think it out all the way, otherwise the game would have been lost. I also give a lot of credit to Shiyam, as he has always been a fantastic fighter, and has a terrific attitude towards the game. In recent years, he has made a lot of progress, and is a leader in the Toronto playing field.

Hazel Smith - Shiyam Thavandiran
Click here to see the game.

(thanks to Predrag Putic for finding the game, and preparing/providing me the link)

Shiyam Thavandiran

Top Ten Questions continued...

Sorry for the are the next two questions on my list...

7. Is there someone you look up to in chess?
I have many, many favourites! I like watching games from players at all levels. In fact, I've learned that sometimes the most creative are the beginners! Anyway, I could go on and on about games and people I admire, but I'll restrict it to just a few.
For games, I really enjoy watching Michael Adams (I've been told I have a similar playing style to him), and reviewing the tactical brilliancies of Paul Morphy and Adolf Anderssen. However, on an overall level, I'm a big fan of Susan Polgar. Not only is she a woman and a grandmaster, she really puts in a lot of effort to promote chess, particularly in the US, but also around the world. She has been involved in numerous events and studies, and has incredible communication skills (I was so excited to see her host the closing ceremonies at the 2008 Olympiad + she was staying in the same hotel as our team...she even winked at me once in the dining hall...such a sweet person). If you wish to learn more about Ms. Polgar, please see my list of links!

8. There is a lot of controversy in chess nowadays. How do you deal with it, and how does it affect you?
By nature, I tend to avoid arguments, and furthermore, I've adopted a very positive attitude. While I respect the opinions of others, I cannot allow their judgements to completely cloud what I think about my goals, my beliefs/values, and chess in general. I've always believed that actions speak louder than words, and if you look at the ACTIONS taken in Canadian chess recently, you'll see it in a much more positive light. We have some great young talent, amazing instructors, and new programs in schools and libraries to help promote the game. One can argue that more can be done, but it needs to be taken one step at a time.
In all, controversy can help bring out different viewpoints, but dwelling on negativity can actually go against what we all believe in...a true chess community. I would say I'm relatively unaffected (by controversy), because I choose not to be, and I will continue to promote chess and support chess players in Canada.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

More Than 400 Page Views!

Pleasant View Week 4

Another great morning at the library! The kids are starting to come earlier, and stay later (we had about ten kids voluntarily stay up to 20 minutes late to play double chess, and a couple of them even helped clean up!). There is clear improvement in their games as time goes by, and more puzzles are being solved. Actually, it's becoming difficult for us organizers/volunteers to keep up...but definitely the guys (Yutong, Aaron, and Sam) are getting better and more involved. Keep up all the good work, and spread the word!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Chess in the Library Tomorrow!

The library program will resume tomorrow. Everyone is invited!

Brookbanks Library (near Victoria Park and York Mills)
Pleasant View Library (near Victoria Park & Van Horne)

10 am to noon

Hazel's Jokes!

Why is a group of pawns like an office full of employees?
Everyone wants to get promoted!
(Note: All jokes are 100% original content courtesy of Hazel!)

Top Ten Questions continued...

Now for the two biggest questions I have been getting recently...

5. Why did you stop playing (for about two years)?
I stopped playing mainly because I became very ill. Many did not know, but even before the 2006 Olympiad in Turin, I was already seeing doctors and staying home for some time to recover. Physically, I was much better by the time the Olympiad rolled around, but mentally, it took me over a year to feel somewhat healthy again. Then, of course, it took a while to get going again, not just in chess, but in many areas of my life.

6. Why did you go to the 2008 Olympiad after your absence?
First of all, I want to confirm that my decision to go to the 2008 Olympiad was never for the free trip, as some may assume. Germany is a nice place to visit, but I would never miss school and use the federation's money if I didn't think the trip was about chess too.
So here's my story: A team member came to me in the summer of 2007, asking me to start playing again, and consequently, qualify for the Olympiad. It had been almost 1.5 years since I had last played, so obviously, I was very hesitant at the idea. I kept it in mind, but for another half year, I still hadn't played a game. Then a neighbour phoned, and asked me to start tutoring his child. When I began tutoring, I realised how much I missed playing chess. So I began signing up for some tournaments. Due to the timing, many people thought I was just playing to make the team, but from my point of view, that was the last thing I considered. After a few weeks, I got an email pleasantly asking me to join the women's olympiad. It took me some time to decide what to do. I've always loved the experience of travelling and playing chess with people around the world, not to mention being able to see all the great players and grandmasters. It was also my last chance before university, and I've had some pretty good results at past international tournaments. For those reasons, I decided to agree to go.
Now fast-forward to the fall, and everything had changed. I had moved schools, and the teachers were not very happy to hear about my trip. They made it seem like it was just vacation, and really pressured me to finish work and pack textbooks in my luggage. I almost decided to contact the CFC and give up my spot on the team, though many of my friends and people I knew told me otherwise, and I knew it would cause a big problem. I had been well-prepared, and studied chess almost everyday, but what I had underestimated was all the stress of the situation. If I could go back, I probably would have declined the offer in the first place. Nevertheless, I congratulate the achievements of my teammates, and wish the best of luck to future olympians!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

More Than 300 Page Views!

Wow! 300+ page views and 5 followers! A good start to my morning. Thanks for making my day! Enjoy the top 10 update below...

Top Ten Questions continued...

The next two questions....

3. How did you improve so quickly as a beginner?
Basically, I believed in myself! I always tried my best, never gave up, and of course, I truly enjoyed playing the game.

4. Who was your first coach? Did formal training help you?
My first professional coach was Goran Milicevic, probably when I was in grade 3. He is an amazing instructor, and I would recommend him to any student. He helped me learn an assortment of tactics and strategy, but most of all, he gave me unconditional support, and I can't thank him enough.
As for other training, I've read some books on my own, and attended Chess 'n Math after-school programs and camps. All were very helpful.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Books and Equipment

Here are my favourites:
--> wholesale pricing
--> specials
--> great variety of merchandise
--> good supply at reasonable prices
--> a portion of sales goes towards chess sponsorship & programs
--> you can always count on amazon!!!
--> books and software, great selection
--> free shipping offers

Some books/equipment also available on,, etc...

CFC bookstore:

CFC equipment store:

Pre-order is available for Hikaru Nakamura and Bruce Harper's new book, "Bullet Chess: One Minute to Mate" on -->

Hazel's Jokes

Okay, too much serious stuff below (as requested by my poll). So now something fun...another joke I came up with today. Enjoy!

How can you tell when a knight is dizzy?
It's always dizzy! It can never move in a straight line!


The 2009 Canadian Closed is now over, and the winner is....IM Jean Hebert! Congratulations!


Ooooh....and I forgot to follow the 2009 Canadian Junior. Congrats to FM Raja Panjwani!


Upcoming Chess Tournaments in Ontario

Oriole Chess Club
--> Oriole Community Centre, 2975 Don Mills Road, Toronto
--> Sunday August 23 & 30, 1 pm
--> Contact Corinna Wan

Chess in the Library
--> Brookbanks Library, 210 Brookbanks Dr., Toronto
--> Pleasant View Library, 575 Van Horne Avenue, North York
--> Saturdays, 10 am - noon
--> Contact Yuanling Yuan

Knights of Chess
--> 8108 Yonge St. #211, Vaughan
--> August 24 - 28, 11 am
--> Contact Yuri Lebedev

Swansea Town Hall
--> Swansea Town Hall Community Centre, 95 Lavinia Avenue, 2nd floor, Toronto
--> Saturdays, 1 pm - 4 pm
--> Contact Natalia Khoudgarian 416 879-7300

Toronto Labour Day Open
--> Macedonian Community Hall, 76 Overlea Blvd., Toronto
--> September 5-7
--> Contact Bryan Lamb

More tournaments -->

Click on "Links" on the side bar to look for chess clubs and other websites.


What an honour it was to find out that Kevin Spraggett featured me on his post -->

Thanks for the recognition!

Another Top Ten

Yes, because I love you all so much....another top ten list...and a very special one this time.

Top 10 chess questions I've been asked in the past, and answers!
Note: only two questions will be posted each day, so keep checking back!

1. Is chess a sport?
I was asked this question at a tournament at Tartu College while being filmed on TV. I think I was the only girl at the tournament, so the interviewer wanted me to answer a tough one. I was very hesitant to speak (I used to be REALLY shy), and ended up giving a very poor answer. So to redeem myself, here is a brief version of the answer I would have given if asked the same question today:
"Chess is like any other sport, except hidden in the mind. While a soccer coach must strategize where to place his players, a chess participant must strategize where to place his pieces. He must think about what his opponent is planning, and perform tactics and moves to overcome obstacles. He must prepare and practice, and set his mind into a more competitive mode. Overall, chess is a special kind of game which may be known as a "mental sport"."

Here is a link to a more formal definition of "sport" from Wikipedia:

2. Why do you play chess?
I play chess because I enjoy the game and its complexity. I started playing as a child, so it has a special place in my heart, and more or less has become a part of me after so many years. I also love teaching chess and discussing strategy.

Top Ten is back!

To celebrate the 200th page view, here is a new top 10 list:

Top 10 reasons why you love this blog ;D
1. You love chess
2. Unique material
3. Interesting material
4. Updated frequently
5. For all ages
6. Supports juniors and other members of the chess community
7. Linked to the Chess in the Library program
8. Useful links
9. Canadian!
10. You don't hear much else from Hazel :)

More Than 200 Page Views!

Wow, what a jump over the 200 mark! Thanks to everyone for visiting...and as I always say, keep supporting Canadian chess!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Try this Puzzle :)

This is another favourite! So many ways to attack...only one way to win!

At the Parlour

What would a chess player ask for at the parlour?
NM - nanaimo bar menu
FM - frappuccino menu
IM - ice cream menu
GM - gelato menu

Monday, August 17, 2009

What would you rather?

What would you rather do? --> THE DREAMS
a) Become a grandmaster
b) Beat a grandmaster (of your choice!)
c) Win the Canadian Open
d) Win a medal at the Olympiad
e) Travel to every country to play in chess tournaments
f) Have every living grandmaster in your town for a party!

What would you rather do? --> THE NIGHTMARES
a) Miss your flight on the way to an important match
b) Lose to your younger sibling/relative on TV. If this doesn't apply to you, lose instead to the most annoying person you know.
c) Spill a drink on a grandmaster during their game
d) Lose every game you play for the next six months
e) Play an entire weekend chess tournament in a bunny suit
f) Play against the person in the bunny suit, lose, and have your game + game photo on the front cover of the Toronto Star.

Also check out the new joke and puzzle below!

Hazel's Jokes

Here's a joke I came up with...

Why was the bishop sad?
Because it was always left in the dark!

(dark-squared bishop)

Try this Puzzle :)

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Top Ten Week

Top 10 reasons to go out and buy a chess set right now!
1. Your old set broke
2. Your old set is missing pieces (more likely)
3. Your old set is lost
4. Your old set is too old
5. You don't have a set, and want to start playing the game (because you heard it's the best game on earth =D )
6. The tournament says "bring your own sets"
7. They're on sale?
8. You need a gift for a friend
9. You wish to tutor your child or others
10. You need to get out more often

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Pleasant View Week 3

Once again, another great week at PV. Some new players, many returning players, and lots of excitement/jokes. The organizers did a very good job pairing everyone into groups, and our assortment of tactics (brought in by Yutong) kept the kids involved and rewarded...with yummy treats.

I am starting a list of memorable moments at PV:
Week 1: opening week + see the position posted on Yutong's blog
Week 2: returning players from week 1 meet their matches - "kids from Seneca", resulting in many great games and interesting positions
Week 3: introduction of tactical problems + table collapses and luckily, causes no damage...though it definitely lightened the atmosphere, as the kids found it very amusing.

Let the good times roll....!!!!

Top Ten Week

I was REALLY busy today...sorry if anyone was looking for an earlier post.

Hazel's top ten activities (today) that prevented me from posting on my blog until now
1. ate home-baked muffins for breakfast (been doing lots of baking lately) ;)
2. checked emails + played Scrabble on Facebook (for fun)
3. prepared printouts and activities for Chess in the Library program
4. helped out at Chess in the Library at PV
5. ate lunch + went to arcade with family
6. went to get ice cream + milkshakes
7. saw the movie "The Time Traveler's Wife"
8. got lost looking for our car
9. stopped by Wendy's restaurant, where the cashier surprisingly recognized me from the Ontario high school chess championships...small world
10. exhausted, but slowly made my way upstairs to reboot my laptop

There you have it...a Saturday in the life of Hazel (me). Well, not every Saturday is like this one, but it was good enough to make my top 10 list! Hope everyone else enjoyed their day too!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Try this Puzzle :)

Can you fit 5 queens and 5 knights on a chess board so that no piece attacks another?

See the answers:

More Than 100 Page Views!

Today, my blog broke the 100 page view mark, so to celebrate, I made this chess design!

Chess in the Library Tomorrow

The library program will resume tomorrow, with lots of surprises in store for the children at Pleasant View. Come see for yourself --> Pleasant View Library (near Victoria Park & Van Horne) 10 am to noon. We're hoping for a good turnout. Everyone is invited!

Try this Puzzle :)

This was a childhood favourite of mine. You may have seen it before, but I just had to put it on my blog! White to move. Force a checkmate in three moves.

Top Ten Week

Hazel's top 10 things you shouldn't DO at a chess game
1. Chew gum
2. Make hand gestures while you think/move
3. Slam the pieces or clock
4. Think out loud
5. Show up almost an hour late for no good reason
6. Keep clicking a retractable pen
7. Stare at your opponent continually
8. Lean your chair
9. Forget to press your clock
10. Continuously offer a draw

Hazel's top 10 things you shouldn't BRING to a chess game
1. Your lunch/dinner
2. Nuts (unless you want your opponent to go nuts!)
3. Your handheld gaming system (like Nintendo DS)
4. Your music player
5. Your vintage chess set or clock
6. Extremely sour candy (especially if the game is being filmed on TV)
7. An electronic pencil sharpener
8. A frown/a bad mood
9. A swim suit
10. Your favourite bobblehead (trust me, it won't be bobbling very long!)

Have more top 10s you want me to cover? Simply leave your comments below!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Top Ten Week

Hazel's top 10 reasons why you lost your game
1. You blundered
2. You were too tired
3. You were distracted
4. Your opponent outplayed you
5. You got caught in a trap (i.e. in the opening)
6. You ran out of time
7. You didn't show up for the game
8. You drank too much caffeine/alcohol
9. You saw that you were playing a grandmaster and ran away
10. You were playing your child (a.k.a. you lost on purpose)

On a more positive 10 reasons why you won your game
1. You were well-prepared
2. You outplayed your opponent
3. You set a trap
4. You attacked like crazy and it happened to work...this time
5. You were playing a lower-rated player
6. You promoted a pawn...or two...or five (true story!)
7. Your opponent was psyched out
8. You managed your time better
9. You showed up for the game and waited the full one hour for your opponent to show up
10. You had a lucky charm

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Layout Change

This is the same blog, but it's now blue/white instead of black.

A Reminder

Please help me by taking the polls on the right hand side + give me feedback/comments! Thanks so much for visiting. Really appreciate all the support from everyone past, present, and future...keep supporting Canadian chess!

Top Ten Week

Here's to all the hard-working organizers in chess...

Hazel's top 10 things organizers don't get enough recognition for
1. assising players and dealing with questions/complaints
2. correcting problems on the computer system
3. organizing entries, money, and results (not to mention being rushed to post results)
4. dealing with printer jams
5. cleaning up the room before and after the tournament
6. setting up pieces and clocks
7. choosing an appropriate and affordable location (travelling to and from the site, negotiating with the owners, ...)
8. Advertising the tournament
9. Preparing opening and closing speeches
10. Waiting hours and hours for all the games to be completed...and not being paid for it

Big thanks to all organizers and volunteers. You are the foundation of the great games played and the successes accomplished.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Blog posted on chesstalk

Hmmm....I wonder how my blog link ended up on chesstalk???? Well, you found me! Hope my posts are sufficient...I've seen some of the other blogs, and mine can't really compare ;) If you haven't voted yet, please help me with the polls on the right hand side -->
+ give me feedback/comments! Thanks so much for visiting. Really appreciate all the support from everyone past, present, and future...keep supporting Canadian chess!

More chesstalk blog links:

Top Ten Week

This week, I will be posting one top ten list each keep checking back!

Today: Hazel's top 10 reasons to play chess
1. Develop logical thinking and problem solving skills.
2. Improve your study habits.
3. Think creatively.
4. Take up a challenge.
5. Meet other players/coaches/organizers.
6. Represent your school/institution/yourself.
7. Travel.
8. Play in any weather, any time, any place, against anyone (as long as you have pieces and a board!)
9. Make money?
10. Have fun!

Monday, August 10, 2009


I know this is kinda late...but I forgot to post my congrats to all the participants and prize winners at the CYCC and Canadian Open! *Cheers!* Also congrats to Dina Kagramanov for winning the women's zonal. For everyone heading overseas for international competitions, best wishes and good luck!!!

Canadian Open:

Try this Puzzle :)

White to move and force checkmate in two moves...

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Oriole + cake!!!

Everyone was really happy to be back at Oriole today...including me. The kids played some good games, and in the end, we all celebrated with cake! Now that's some sweet chess ;)

Did you know?

The game of chess dates back more than 5000 years!

Chess Poster 3

Oriole surpriseeee...

For the kids at Oriole, you're in for a surprise! and it's yummy.... :)

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Pleasant View Week 2

You know kids like their chess when they pop in 20 minutes, close to 20 eager children came to Pleasant View to play, an increase in turnout from the previous week. There were some great games to watch, and everyone did very well overall. The organizers are currently planning even more activities for the future, so invite your friends!

Chess Poster 2

Chess Poster 1

Friday, August 7, 2009

Did you know?

Theoretically, the longest game possible is 8949 moves, but most of the time, games end in less than 50 (moves)!

Try this Puzzle :)

White to move...forced checkmate in two moves!

Oriole Chess Club is back!

With the city strike finally over, Oriole Chess Club has been confirmed to start running again. *Cheers!*

Monday, August 3, 2009

Pleasant View Week 1

This past Saturday, I went to Pleasant View Library expecting to do nothing more than watching a few games, doing a little scorekeeping, and maybe saying a few hellos. However, as soon as I walked in, I found out that the program was more than just your average tournament -- it was a community! The children were rushing in to sign up, and people from all ages and skill levels came to play. It was a pleasure, and the organizers + players made me feel very welcome. I hope I'll be able to join them again.