A dream within a dream
the chess vanishesHey ya Guys. Last night, I had another lucid dream, clearing up a large portion of what has been keeping me busy the last months... no actually, years. Recently, I remarked that when I find out the reason why I play chess, I will quit immediately. And last night, I heard a random word on the radio, a word that for some reason I had not considered in the chess context before. I was very sleepy and I wanted to write down my thoughts in order not to forget, but it seems that by memorizing just that key word I managed to retrogradically analyze the rest of it as well. That's good. For once, I didn't forget much. The dream that followed after my pondering was a dream within a dream, in which I woke up, and then had to wake up once more, so I could write down what had happened (waking up accompanied by a cacophony of incomprehensible words flowing from the radio). I remembered the one word that I needed. And here I am, writing this, for myself, and for you! (you're so lucky)
Wait for it... chess is "geestverruimend"! That's a Dutch word word that is (euphemistically) used to describe the effects of soft & hard drugs. It is very much a mild term; literally translated as "broadening the spirit and awareness", it doesn't seem so bad, does it?
The context in which it was used is that the ability to formulate thoughts in a different language than your native one helps in disengaging yourself from being stuck in your limited set of speech patterns. Basically, it broadens your general awareness (it is geest- or bewustzijnsverruimend).
The ability to formulate "moves of chess" somehow is a similar experience; you become unstuck from your own limited set of thought habits. Awesome, right?
However, having your mind stuck in chess isn't that hot either. The English language is more aware of the negative consequences of drug addiction, and its translation for the word "geestverruimend" is less condoning: chess is mind-blowing (hallucinogen), or psychedelic.
So, that's it - chess is like a mind-blowing drug and playing chess is a clean rush for which you don't need to insert any kind of substance into your body. A totally non-offensive way of having your pleasure, without having to bother other people. Chess is simply an addiction to a certain type of intoxication... where the chessboard is the desired drug, injecting you each time when you are lured into reaching out to move a piece (the pieces are the needles and very much infective upon contact with your hand's skin). When, after hours of strain, you are finally allowed to touch the opponent's king briefly (the check-mate) before resetting the pieces to the initial position, you reach your much-desired climactic culmination, a satisfaction in the form of a miniscule exaltation (a nonsexual "orgasm").
Maybe this actually is what solves it for me. I found an apparently very well researched five-page article by a gentleman named Gilbert Cant who describes similar reasons for obsessively involving oneself with the game of chess. But what I described above can't POSSIBLY be my final answer to the problem posed by chess. I can't quit now, I was just about to get the hang of it all. It's always been a good way of bringing a fantasy world into and diversifying my otherwise quite dull and alienated life. I can't quit. I will quickly hide this answer for no-one to see and hopefully I will forget this soon. I want to touch more kings. I guess I'm addicted for life.
The gamesThanks for reading all that, I'm not sure if all my Reuben Fine-ish thoughts appeal to you. Maybe I can cheer you up with a couple of games of chess
I am just showing these; not the literally hundreds(!) of other even uglier chess games I have been part of last month. And only games as white because I was too lax to review my black wins :p