¿Que Pasa?

January, 2011

In my closing Que Pasa article, I want to thank all of you in District 17 for giving me the opportunity to serve bridge in this district in many different capacities, and to share with you excerpts of the letter I sent to the ACBL Board of Directors immediately following my last meeting, in Orlando in November.

First, I believe it is imperative that we eventually find a way to rank players based on their current ability. It's easy to blow this off when we're still physically and mentally able to function at a high level. However, there are many of our players who presently cannot compete at the level their masterpoint totals dictate. Until a few years ago, the people in this category were generally players who played a long, long time and accumulated lots of points, but who, as they got older, saw their skills diminish. Now, however, I believe this problem is magnified by a couple of new situations: the continued inflation of masterpoints and the easy availability of internet masterpoints. Bridge is competitive. We all want to win. If we can't, I'm afraid we'll search for activities that will fulfill us once bridge is unable to satisfy this need.

Second, we need to maintain and build upon the technological initiatives that the technology committee has initiated and nurtured. I think that for a couple of decades we rode the success of ACBLscore and fell far, far behind the technology curve, and we have quite a ways to go to get ourselves back into the forefront of bridge innovation and technology, where I think we belong. New interfaces with the ACBL, including a new web site, the ability for clubs to post their results on our site, a new ACBLscore, new interactive capabilities with ACBL personnel and in general better ways to use technology to perform mechanical functions will make us more efficient and more cost effective, and should help improve our image as a progressive organization. I ask all of you to constantly assess the bridge environment with an eye to improving it and making it more appealing. We're limited here only in our willingness to dream about what could be.

Finally, it would be wrong to ignore the 162,000, the great majority of our members who are the backbone of our organization, but who are not the top players we constantly hear about. While it is wonderful to have world champions and world championships, servicing the needs of the few, the top 500 or so, at the expense of the general membership is, in my opinion, losing strategy. As I leave the board, I hope that the ACBL I served for so many years will continue to serve and be attentive to my needs, and to those of the vast majority of us who are just regular players who love to play the game. World championships, servicing the needs of the few, the top 500 or so, at the expense of the general membership is, in my opinion, losing strategy. As I leave the board, I hope that the ACBL I served for so many years will continue to serve and be attentive to my needs, and to those of the vast majority of us who are just regular players who love to play the game.



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