What is the only game that is zero percent luck? Chess. Chess challenges the mind to think ahead and tests its memory. So naturally, at a school with as many scholars as GA, chess is the growing talk in the halls.
I have always known how to play chess. I dabbled with it for a while, not taking it too seriously. But now, I have become uncontrollably obsessed with it. Any free time I have I spend playing chess, watching chess, or reading about chess. Now in most schools, I would immediately be classified as a nerd and exiled for all eternity. But ever since the blow up of chess in the GA Upper School, this is not the case.
Every day, I walk down the halls and see a bunch kids huddled around a chessboard cheering and yelling for one player or another. Other days a friend will come up to me saying “Yo, guess who I just checkmated?!” or “Ask me who I just beat in chess!” But the most overwhelming growth in participation in the chess community has occurred in Chess Club. At the beginning of the school year, I’d walk into chess club and see one or two games being played with maybe three people watching. Now, when I walk into chess club, it’s more like eight or nine games being played with twenty people watching. Recently, there were so many people in Chess Club that a rule was made that spectators had to stand because there weren’t enough chairs for the players! This outcome made the leader of chess club, Mr. Straub, so excited that he took a picture of the whole thing.
Now sure, chess is just a game and everyone may stop playing it next week, but I don’t care. As corny as it sounds, chess has made me friends with some kids who I may never have thought about talking to before, but because of Chess Club and my obsession with the game, they are now my go-to people to talk about chess with. I’ve also been able to convince some of my friends to get obsessed with it so that now, when we hang out, we can take breaks from our hours of FIFA and do something useful with our time like play chess. So I hope that chess continues to spread at GA and I encourage everyone to come to Chess Club in Mr. Straub’s room any day at lunch, whether you’re good or not! Also, if you have any free time after school come play a little for the chess team. Everyone is welcome!
-Gideon S. '15
|Players and observers at a recent meeting of the Upper School's Chess Club.|