Totally Hooked and Forever Grateful

By Tiffany Destefano,
Unit 373,
NABC Master. 

I took my first bridge lesson in April of 2018. My bridge teachers, Toby McEvoy and Chris Hahn, had been colleagues in the Las Vegas theater community since 2012. I grew up loving card games, so — seeing the passion these two have for the game – I expressed an interest in learning to play bridge. Toby and Chris recruited four of us “theater people” to learn as their students.

We set our sights on playing in the February 2019 St George (UT) Sectional. At that time, there were few, if any, options for non-retired people to play in sanctioned club games. To get us familiar with the details of duplicate bridge, Toby and Chris would take some of our lesson days and arrange for informal duplicate games with their friends who have now become my friends as well.

My first masterpoints were silver points won at that sectional in St. George in the 299er section. I love the people, the atmosphere, and the competition, I love that this game satisfies my brain and that there is always something more to learn.

My best friend, Glenn Heath, and I often play together. However, with the increase in sanctioned online play due to COVID-19, Glenn and I have played together, and with other friends, much more than we could have imagined. Probably our biggest accomplishment last year was placing first in the 299er section of the Regional tournament back in May 2020. It was a huge accomplishment for us and to know we really are good at bridge just fueled my love for this game.

I have achieved the NABC Master rank in just two years because of the availability of these online games. While my travel expenses are low now, I look forward to more face-to-face play both at clubs and at out-of-town tournaments where I hope to achieve the next rank of Advanced NABC Master.

Toby and Chris continue to make time to review the basics and to introduce new bidding conventions. Thanks to them, I’m totally hooked and forever very grateful.