Thursday, 31 January 2013


The Art & Value of being Nobody
     It's nice to have a break from your usual lifestyle time to time. I've been so caught up in all kind of things lately that I didn't manage to make any time for myself. I've missed being eye on eye with the inner me. It's the moment you don't have to act as you're expected- you don't have to be a daughter, a sister, a granddaughter, a girlfriend, a best friend- you can be whoever you want or you can be nobody. It's actually interesting to be nobody, you put on some nice clothes- go to a nice restaurant and enjoy a dinner-all alone, imagining that you can be whoever you want- a teacher, a scientinst, a pianist, a bussiness woman, a poker player, a writer, a doctor, a chess player (though the last one wouldn't take so much imagination :))) You can act however you want, you can stare at the ceiling or you can stare at someone ( they don't know you anyway), you can flirt with the waiter, you can choose whether you want white or red wine, you can eat whatever crosses your mind and then you can smile sweetly and order 2 desserts- there's no one to judge you...
Say hi to Mr. Nobody :)

     One must appreciate the few moments he's been given to be nobody, because we all have to return to being friends, spouses, mothers, daughters eventually...

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

A refuel?

     Here are 2 games from the 9th round in Gibraltar that ended unexpectedly quick. We all know that tiredness is an important factor in chess and one should save his energy during a tournament, it must be the main explanation of the mistakes that have been done. You can see the games below:

     In order to avoid such moments, I think that one should have a good physical preparation, one that should be developed between the tournaments. Some players use to have snacks during the games- chocolate bars, cereals, fruits, energizing drinks in order to refuel their energy...

Taking shortcuts

     It's been a very interesting round in Gibraltar yesterday, with many decisive results, as you can see below:

12GMKamsky Gata27406½ - ½GMVitiugov Nikita26949
28GMLe Quang Liem270560 - 16GMShort Nigel D269010
316GMGeorgiev Kiril2643½ - ½GMIvanchuk Vassily27581
421GMSalgado Lopez Ivan2606½ - ½GMAdams Michael27253
515GMTkachiev Vladislav26500 - 1GMVachier-Lagrave Maxime27115
66GMNavara David2710½ - ½GMSandipan Chanda259024
77GMShirov Alexei2708½ - ½IMOparin Grigoriy247849
817GMJones Gawain C B26320 - 1GMYu Yangyi268811
930GMZhao Xue2554½ - ½GMFridman Daniel266713
1035GMCramling Pia25185½ - ½5GMWojtaszek Radoslaw27234
1141GMAl-Sayed Mohammed250750 - 15GMIturrizaga Eduardo265014
1222GMEhlvest Jaan260351 - 05IMLarino Nieto David249745
1326GMMuzychuk Anna258251 - 05IMGunina Valentina249047
1451IMMuzychuk Mariya247150 - 15GMVazquez Igarza Renier256527
1528GMFelgaer Ruben255751 - 05IMTania Sachdev240371

     The draw on the 1st board was a fighting one, with Vitiugov trying for a win. Kamsky found a way out in an endgame, with a pawn down-but it was never enough for a decisive advantage.
     It seemed that it would be a draw on the 2nd board too, after the opening, but white failed to see the dangers of the position and Nigel outplayed Le Quang Liem. You can see the game here:

Nigel Short and Jovanka Houska enjoying the dinner
     Another encounter that I wanted to watch was the Muzychuk Anna-Gunina Valentina one, but there was unfortunately no live cover of the game. It was particularly interesting because Anna lost in the last round of the Women's European Championship against Gunina last year and with it, she lost the gold medal. She managed to take revenge this time and I can't wait to see the game.
     There are 2 more rounds to be played and the 2 players who are leading so far are Nikita Vitiugov and Nigel Short,with 7p out of 8.They will play against each other today. 

On whom would you bet your money-on the Russian youth or on the English experience?

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Sailing through the World

Rhodes island
      What is it about us, chess players, that we seem never to get enough of travelling? It must be one of the main reasons why we've chosen chess as a profession. We choose to sail through the World, our thirst for new places seeming to never get enough.
      I had some crappy days and my mood was under the ground, but I feel like in the 9th sky now, as I've found out that I'll have the chance to visit a place I've always wanted to see- the Rhodes island! I like Greek islands so much! I've already been several times on Crete and I also visited Leros - there's such a nice atmosphere there- a pittoresque, but in the same time a very lively one! One can get whatever he wants on the Greek islands- from sightseeing and peaceful sunbathing to wild nightlife. There's one more island I'd like to visit one day- Santorini!


     I am so excited when going to new places- I try to visit at least one new country per year. I added to my list Poland, Austria and Hungary last year and there's going to be Kazakhstan, Thailand and Serbia this year,well and Rhodes (though I've been so many times in Greece, Rhodes should be a whole new experience!).
Looking forward to writting xoxo from Rhodes, Belgrad, Astana and Bangkok!

As for now, xoxo from Iasi ;)

Monday, 28 January 2013


     Careless mind, pure soul, peaceful sleeping, Deep Purple on repeat, reading Dumas, finding ease while eating chocolate, giggling while reading yet another "Cool Girl"... Poof! All gone. Where? Destination unknown.
     The moment when a cup of coffee sounds as the most unappealing thing, the chocolate lies untouched for the 2nd day, I don't give a dime for the Dumas' romance, I'm frowning my eyes at myself when I only think of music and I wish I didn't promise myself not to smoke ever again. The only thing I seem to bare is reading some twisted book.Well, that's a start. I didn't feel how the day has gone, it's like I woke up some time ago and I have to go to sleep again. I think I'll go for some work out, physical challenges always distract from thinking too much...

Spider's style

     The Gibraltar Tradewise Chess Festival has come to it's decisive last 3 rounds. There are three players leading the tournament with 5,5p out of 6: Vitiugov Nikita,Georgiev Kiril and Le Quang Liem.
     Today's round should be a very interesting one, here are the pairings of the top10 boards:

19GMVitiugov Nikita2694GMGeorgiev Kiril264316
21GMIvanchuk Vassily27585GMLe Quang Liem27058
314GMIturrizaga Eduardo265055GMKamsky Gata27402
43GMAdams Michael272555GMTkachiev Vladislav265015
521GMSalgado Lopez Ivan260655GMNavara David27106
617GMJones Gawain C B263255GMShirov Alexei27087
710GMShort Nigel D269055IMLarino Nieto David249745
85GMVachier-Lagrave Maxime2711GMStefanova Antoaneta251637
911GMYu Yangyi2688GMCmilyte Viktorija251538
1013GMFridman Daniel2667WGMJu Wenjun250542

     Adams (who's called by chess players "the spider" because of his playing style) played a very nice game yesterday, against Dzagnidze. Here are some mementos from the game:
Black to move
21...Nfxd5!! 22.exd5- Re2! 23. Rxe2- Rxe2 24. Rd1- Bd4 25.Be1
Black to move
25...Qe8! 26.Nf3- Qe3 27. Qb1- Rxb2 28. Qc1-Qxc1 29. Rxc1-Be3 30. Rd1-c4
Black has a decisive advantage that Adams managed to convert into a full point
     There seems to be a very nice and friendly atmosphere in Gibraltar. There are many other events being organized besides the tournaments. For example, there's been a game played on a huge chess board- 5 Top women vs 5 Top men!
Nana Dzagnindze, Tania Sachdev, Valentina Gunina, Viktoria Cmylite and Stuart Conquest holding the microphone (the main organizer of the event)- from left to right

Le Quang Liem, Gawain Jones, Maxim Vachier-Lagrave and Gata Kamsky (from left to right)
     The men's team turned to be a bit stronger and won the game :)
Gibraltar's famous Rock
     I am very curious to see who's going to be the winner this year!

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Magnus rocks Wijk!

     The Tata Steel Chess Festival has come to an end. It's been two weeks of uncompromising fight and I really enjoyed watching it, as the most of us, I suppose.
     The star of the "A" group- Magnus Carlsen- scored a fantastic +7 (10p out of 13)-  more than enough for claiming the win in the tournament.

     It's interesting that his games were not that spectacular (the one against Nakamura might be an exception). Let's take Fischer or Kasparov for example- they could simply crush their opponents in an "all in" style,not necessarily correct- but surely spectacular.They had such an energy bursting out, they were driven by chess. I don't see much of it in Carlsen's play, it seems for me that he doesn't like to take risks, no poker bluffing,no emotions, just machine's precision.
    Aronian finished the tournament in 2nd and Anand in 3rd. Aronian was unlucky to lose by preparation from Vishy and then to miss the chance of winning against Magnus. I think that with some more luck, he could challenge Magnus for the 1st place.
      It was nice to see the World's Champion-Anand- come back. It seemed that he didn't have a good period lately, not scoring more than 50% in any major event. I think his win over Aronian inspired him and brought more life into his play.
     The "B" group's 1st place was shared by 2 players- Naiditsch Arakadij and Rapport Richard, both scoring 9p out of 13.
A very talented Hungarian player, one of the youngest GM's in the World-Rapport Richard
     An Italian GM- Brunello Sabino won the "C" group with an amazing +9 (11p out of 13) and a 2764 performance!
Brunello Sabino

     My congratulations to the winners and I hope that the tradition of Wijk aan Zee will continue to offer us the same thrill for many more years!

Call me irresponsible

     First step done! Only 5 more exams left. It was a pretty easy day today, as the English in Economics turned to be a very easy exam- finished it in 30 minutes :D I wonder what score I'll get :P
     I have 2 more days to prepare for the Mathematics applied in Economics exam and I'm working on it (more or less) :D

     I was so happy today that I've decided to treat myself with a glass of a nice Cabernet-Sauvignon while reading some chapters from my already favourite book "Fifty shades darker" (the 2nd tome of "Fifty shades of grey"). 
 Gotta' return to studying now ;)

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Want a piece of me?

     I wanted it to work so badly,but our own plans don't always coincide with the life's ones.
     There's not that much of me that I could afford giving pieces of myself, even lending them for an undetermined amount of time, I'd better keep them for my own use. There's no point of giving something if you don't get anything in return.
     I've got so many plans for this year, that I'd better use all my pieces for making them happen. So,for now, there's a "R" sign on me, no one can use me, no matter of purpose.

xoxo from Iasi

Friday, 25 January 2013

Mysterious rook moves

     Wijk is such an interesting chess festival! There are too many games worth being followed. The game Giri-Caruana has caught my eye today. I think it deserves to be the game of the day! Here you can see it:

     The sacrifice of the 2 pawns followed by two amazing rook maneuvers were a masterpiece!
Anish Giri
     Ten rounds have been played by now, and Magnus Carlsen is the clear lider, having 8p. Here you can see the standings.
1Carlsen, M.8.5 / 1128612929½½1½11½½111
2Anand, V.6.5 / 1027722860½1½½½½½11½
3Aronian, L.6.5 / 1028022827½0½1½½11½1
4Nakamura, H.6.5 / 1027692822½½½½½111½½
5Karjakin, S.5.5 / 10278027750½½½½½1½1½
6Leko, P.5.5 / 1027352782½½0½½½½1½1
7Harikrishna, P.5.0 / 10269827410½½½½11½0½
8Giri, A.5.0 / 1127262679½½½½0½½10½½
9van Wely, L.5.0 / 102679272800½½0½1½11
10Wang, H.4.5 / 1127522665½000½½0½11½
11Caruana, F.4.5 / 1127812661½00½0½0½½11
12Hou, Y.3.5 / 1026032638000011½0½½
13L'Ami, E.3.0 / 10262726000½½½½½000½
14Sokolov, I.2.5 / 10266725650½0½0½½0½0

Magnus Carlsen- World's Nr.1
     Magnus has had an amazing tournament so far and he's gaining 10 Elo points. I think he might get to 2900 by the end of the year.
     There are 2 more rounds to go, but I don't think that anyone will be able to challenge Carlsen for the 1st place.