Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Monday, May 24th, 2021


A V Ramana RaoJune 7th, 2021 at 1:25 pm

Hi Dear Mr Wolff
Quite instructive hand. Greed always proves to be undoing. However, in this particular hand, south perhaps an outlet he has not utilised. When east shifted to club , south can duck, win the continuation and lead spade. West of course inserts Q ( if he doesn’t, there’s no problem) but dummy wins and south cashes spade K, minor suit winners and throws east in with club for stepping stone to dummy’s hearts. If he were playing matchpoints, he would anyway get low score as all players who win first trick would make ten tricks but if it were a team event, south has salvaged substantial damage

A V Ramana RaoJune 7th, 2021 at 1:28 pm

I should have added: if east unblocks on clubs , south gets third club trick

Iain ClimieJune 7th, 2021 at 2:02 pm


Very nicely spotted. I once played a stepping stone “by feel” when I was about 20 without too much thought and at high speed. My partner, a cultured, cerebral person and a great student of the game squawked that he’d wntedd for years to pay wither tha, a vice or a winkle (see Reese’s The Expert Game) and I’d pulled one off without seeming efort. After jokingly questioning my parentage, he bought me a beer.



bobbywolffJune 7th, 2021 at 2:43 pm


You are a living, breathing, cerebral bridge player who does not stay down for the count.

Although methinks today’s hand suggested good advice (and still do) your expertise demands better proofreading on my part, otherwise our advice rings hollow.

However, instead of feeling inadequate I should (and do) always welcome your gems, as just another example of true grit applied to bridge

Nothing wrong with by reading the column, and then the comments, may be getting more for your time and effort.

Thanks, you rascal, for your time spent in a worthwhile cause. Dutifully admitted, but expect greater future care, solely to demand others to not expect us to overlook what you so often, deftly see and worse for us (not really), but not for them, report.

bobbywolffJune 7th, 2021 at 3:01 pm

Hi Iain,

We all can understand how, as least as far as bridge is concerned, you are our favorite game’s choice as “The Natural”!

IOW you have done what Reese and other of our greatest authors have written about, while at the same time, not have even known (at the time) that your play has a most respected and specific name.

And only a free beer for doing so, seems below your pay grade. However the glamour and above all, the reason for it, is always the kicker, and by far the more enjoyment.

No doubt, bridge is the game which offers the most varied types of mind genius, among all the competitions, some of which, likely not yet discovered, but if you hang around more bars, perhaps you’ll get more offers.

And even if you don’t, your access may provide you with a very happy alternative.

A V Ramana RaoJune 7th, 2021 at 3:08 pm

Hi Dear Mr Wolff and lain

jim2June 7th, 2021 at 10:51 pm


If I were South, East and West would have the opposite black Qs ands East would have
sorted his in with his clubs until after Trick 1.

If I sat East or West, I also have swapped Qs with partner, but the swappage would be in the minors with East’s diamonds Q98.

Only if I were North, would no cards change, but play would proceed as it did in the column text.

bobbywolffJune 8th, 2021 at 12:22 am

Hi Jim2,

But the black suit queen switch would not be noticed by East until too early…….er, I meant too late, but I should say, for the defense, just perfectly, meaning Taking On Complete Misery.

Also, East flashed his hand to you, but you were just too ethical to take advantage, so you then, like planned, lost to the queen of spades.

But, honorably so, allowing your name to forever be honored, except everyone there, including the other three players, never found out.

Iain ClimieJune 8th, 2021 at 8:49 am

Hi Jim2,

Many years ago, a precursor of M & Ms in the UK was a confectionery called “Treets” – chocolate in a candy shell. The advertising jingle was “Treets melt in your mouth not in your hand”. The inevitable joke was “I wouldn’t say X was unlucky but Treets melt in his hand.”

I hope this is somehow some small consolation but hang in there. There used to be a wonderful Irish comedian called Dave Allen who did a monologue on a guy who made evry major choice (of 2) wrong (e.g. he picks the woman who nags him) but I haven’t managed to track it down. If you don’t mind irreverencce, you may wish to look at his skit on the garden of Eden which is out there on youtube.

Take care.


Hi Robert! We went through a company called Lemon Light, they handled all of the permits on our behalf.