Why Do We Play Bridge?

 

There seem to be three common reasons that are given for playing duplicate bridge:

  • The desire to compete

  • The desire to learn

  • The desire to socialize

 

THE DESIRE TO COMPETE

The desire to compete seems to be innate, normal, and healthy, and does not require much explanation.

 

THE DESIRE TO LEARN

The desire to learn the game, to begin to develop some level of mastery of the game, and then over time to further develop your bidding and card playing skills beyond where you would have thought possible when you started, how fulfilling is that! One aspect of learning the game that

is perhaps the most challenging is learning to be a good partner, not just with your favorite partner, but with multiple partners. Being a good partner requires being a good listener, as well as being courteous and forgiving. Once you begin developing good collaborative partnerships,

where you collaborate well in both bidding and defensive play, it is extremely rewarding. In fact, you can’t really play winning bridge without doing that, since it is a partnership game!

 

THE DESIRE TO SOCIALIZE

The desire to socialize with bridge peers is for many if not most an equally important part of the game, and often results in the development of lasting friendships and relationships that go well beyond the bridge table.

 

GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR MAKING BRIDGE COMPETITION MORE FUN FOR EVERYONE

  • Courtesy is required at all times.

  • Avoid remarks or actions that might cause embarrassment or annoyance to an opposing player (or to partner).

  • Avoid behavior that in any way interferes with the enjoyment of the game.

  • Avoid mannerisms or actions during bidding or play that could be considered unethical.

  • Don’t quietly tolerate any of the above, but instead notify the director, so that corrective action can be taken to restore the type of environment that allows competition to be fun for all participants.

 

GUIDELINES FOR NEWCOMERS / NOVICES

  • Focus on the basics, meaning a basic set of conventions, basic bidding skills, basic defensive skills, and the basics of declarer play, including the development of overtricks in match play and the safety play in team games.

  • Take advantage of opportunities for mentoring.

  • Learn to practice active ethics and zero tolerance for unpleasant behavior from the beginning, including your own behavior and partner’s behavior, as well as opponents.

 

GUIDELINES FOR 499ERS / ASPIRING LIFE MASTERS

  • Work on developing a thicker skin, so that you don’t let criticisms bother you, but instead you use them to improve your game.

  • Don’t take anyone’s behavior personally, because it’s not personal.  Bad actors don’t discriminate. On the other hand, remember the zero tolerance policy. It’s sometimes a fine line. If anyone’s behavior is so bad that it affects results, or it interferes with you or your partner’s ability to enjoy the game, report it to the director.

  • Develop respect for and show interest in the skillfulness of the top players. Be willing to learn from them, to be mentored by them.

  • Always go out of your way to be courteous and respectful to the more experienced

 

GUIDELINES FOR NEW LIFE MASTERS

  • Learn to enjoy and thrive on the new level of competition in the open game

  • Learn from the experts. Take every opportunity to discover their secrets. Ask questions.

  • You’ll be amazed at how willing they are to be a good mentor.

  • Learn to practice active ethics. Things that you may have gotten away with in the 499er game, you won’t get away with in the open game. If you make a long hesitation during bidding, and then pass, expect to be called on it. You have just conveyed information to your partner.

 

GUIDELINES FOR ADVANCING OR ADVANCED PLAYERS

  • Always be courteous and welcoming

  • Always be a good mentor when asked

  • Don’t offer unsolicited comments about the opponents play if they could come across as disparaging.

  • Do compliment the opponents good play

 

GUIDELINES FOR TOP PLAYERS

  • Go out of your way to welcome and encourage new and advancing players. They are the future of the game. Be a good mentor if they ask. Compliment their good play.  Congratulate them when they win their bracket, and praise them when they do well in your bracket.

  • No matter how nice you are, many players are intimidated by you. You have an ethical responsibility to not abuse this.

Central Carolina Bridge Association

Claudia Hale, Webmaster