Saturday, October 13, 2007

Strange Facts - Homeless man is chess king of Washington

strange facts from washington



Strange Facts from WASHINGTON (AFP) - He sleeps on a bench, but he is king of chess during the day at Washington's Dupont Circle, where he dazzles beginners and masters alike with his winning moves on the park's stone chessboards.

Tom Murphy, 49, makes what little money he has from teaching his prodigious knowledge of the game to passersby for a few dollars.

"He has the title of expert in chess. This is the second highest American title; above him are master. So it means he is quite good" said Washington's Chess Center director David Mehler.

A former math and science major and a celebrity among amateurs, Murphy has made the Dupont Circle public square America's most prestigious chess park after New York's fabled Washington Square, according to some chess lovers.

"The mathematical equation has always been strange facts to me, then when you add the camaraderie, the ambiance, the open air, it's almost irresistible," said Murphy, peering over a park chessboard that draws players from all walks of life -- students, doctors, lawyers, drunkards.

Garrulous and brilliant, Murphy, grew up in North Carolina and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, two well known chess centers, and specializes in a lightning version of chess known as "blitz".Strange Facts

In this accelerated version of the ancient game, players are allowed five minutes for all their moves, and the game ends within 10 minutes.

"The appeal of blitz is that, maybe in two or five minutes, I may put together a work of art that might last a life time," Murphy said in his inimitable style of explaining chess basics.

The game, he said consists of "few guiding principles: king safety, fight for the center, give every piece a job."

"At blitz he is a very strong player. He has a very fast mind and he sees combinations very quickly. He calculates very quickly," said Mehler, who has been teaching the board game to underprivileged children for 15 years.

Murphy has won several chess tournaments and finished 15th in the 2005 world blitz championship.

He's not always down and out, but his addiction to booze often lands him on the street.

"The pursuit of the ego versus the pursuit of the spirit are in conflict sometimes," he explained. "I enjoy alcohol a little too much."

He attends Alcoholic Anonymous meetings and admits, "when I don't drink my chess is better." That's some strange facts for sure - he sais

Murphy aims to get better at chess and rise to the title of master.

"I would dearly love to go on and make my master's rating because through that I get a credibility to increase my teaching fee," he said.

"There is an upcoming tournament on Thanskgiving (November 22) in Philadelphia. That's looking promising," he added.

For now, the homeless chess teacher charges 20 to 30 dollars an hour and will match his wits with any rival for two to five dollars per game.

"Grand masters are teaching 100 or 200 bucks (dollars) an hour, masters can get at least 50, that's not bad," he said.

[Via - Yahoo!News]

More Strange Facts:
10 Million Dollar Ideas That Were Not Supposed to Work

Who Is Shawn Casey? Is He For Real ?

Stolen, Dumped, Found, Sold: The Story of a $1m Painting

Technorati Tags
||||

Technorati Profile


9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ищете, где купить канаты, канат оцинкованный ?
Компания ООО Мегапром - крупный поставщик канат стальной оцинкованный от лучших производителей на территории России.
Отгрузка из наличия со склада г.Орел. ж/д контейнером или автомобильным транспортом через любую транспортную компанию в кратчайшие сроки в любую точку страны.
Вся продукция сертифицирована и имеет необходимые маркировки.

Anonymous said...

Ищете, где купить электроды сварочные ?
Компания ООО Мегапром - курпный поставщик применение электродов от лучших производителей на территории России.
Вся продукция сертифицирована и имеет необходимые маркировки.

Anonymous said...

Компания Мегапром предлагает калиброванный прокат производства Северсталь метиз ОСПАЗ
со склада г.Орел - пруток нержавеющий калиброванный ст.10, 20, 35, стА12, 40Х и др.
В наличии огромный ассортимент калиброванного металла - пруток и шестигранник.
Возможно изготовление под заказ дробных размеров и мерных длинн.
Вы можете купить прокат калиброванный разных диаметров и длинн - круги, мотки, прутки.

Anonymous said...

[color=green][size=24]mail ru секс знакомства[/size][/color]
секс знакомства женщина 50 лет секс в первый день знакомства знакомства шахты секс кемеровские секс знакомства
бесплатные секс знакомства в ульяновске секс знакомства город магнитогорск секс на час знакомства
бесплатные секс знакомства в луганске секс знакомства в борисоглебске секс в день знакомства бесплатные секс знакомства в минске
секс знакомства темрюк секс знакомства без регистации секс знакомства туймазы

Anonymous said...

Всем привет!
Прочитала в блоге про электронные сигареты как способ бросить курить
http://electrosigaretaomsk.blogspot.com
Кто нибудь пробовал?

Anonymous said...

[color=green][size=14][/size][/color]

Anonymous said...

I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you design this website
yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you?
Plz answer back as I'm looking to design my own blog and would like to find out where u got this from. appreciate it

Check out my site pirater un compte facebook

Anonymous said...

Hello there! Quick question that's totally off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My weblog looks weird when viewing from my iphone 4. I'm trying to find a template or
plugin that might be able to resolve this issue. If you have any recommendations, please share.
Thank you!

Here is my blog post; Psn Code Generator

Anonymous said...

Wow that was unusual. I just wrote an really long comment but after I
clicked submit my comment didn't appear. Grrrr... well I'm not writing all
that over again. Regardless, just wanted to say great blog!


my site; Psn Code Generator