Thurs- 3:13 AM to 3:39 AM

Now, if some of you aren’t really “chess players,” then this story may not much interest you.  But I was playing a couple of games of “Thinkin’ and Drinkin’,” which is simply shot chess, with Monteclaire.  The rules are: after 4 pawns are taken, that’s a shot.  Any 2 of the rooks, knights, or bishops, that’s a shot.  And 1 queen is a shot.  Oh, and when you lose, that’s one more shot.  So in any given game, up to 7 shots are possible.  First game, both sober, I began mopping the floor with this guy.  I was making smart moves left and right.  I set up this fantastic defense, and nearly every move he would contemplate to take one of my pieces out would be impossible without consequence.  If you’ve seen the end of “Reservoir Dogs,” then you know how most of the games between Monteclaire and I usually go.  He threatens a piece of mine, and instead of retreating or blocking his move, I threaten a separate piece of his.  And he responds in turn by threatening yet another of mine.  So we end with this large group of pieces nervously holding a gun in each hand at the piece to their left or right, all of us just waiting for someone to pull the trigger.  I won that game, by the way.  Hilarious too, because Isabald isn’t a big drinker, but after I took out a rook, then his queen, and then with him conceding, the game ended with him downing 3 shots in a row.

The best part though is the next game.  He was killing me.  Every move I made was stupid, and by a certain point I didn’t care anymore and had many missing pieces.  Near the end of the night, my rook was just about all I had left, and it happened to be positioned to where I could kill a pawn of his near his back row without consequence.  So I did.  It was only then I realized that one more move back, and he was checkmated.  I had to wait though, and play it smooth, because if he noticed, he could move his king one space to my right and it would basically be hopeless for me.  Luckily, at this point, he was quite drunk, and I moved my knight to a position for him to kill it with a pawn (getting my king out of check in the process).  Again, sorry if you’re really not interested in chess, but when I nudged that sucker into that space and the look of realization slowly crept onto his face, well it was just glorious.  A glorious moment for Gloria.  At the end of the game we have this little tradition where we flip the board over, the pieces scatter on the ground, and we curse loudly at each other in a faux German language while carving pentagrams into our chests with the King piece’s sharp cross.

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