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Today's Bridge: It was an exciting day, but disappointing from some perspectives. Dan H. was my partner against Dan C. and Ken. I started with a 3S pre-empt, making four thanks to my partner holding three trump, including the honors I was missing. I was able to ruff out my clubs and ruff diamonds back to my hand to finish pulling trump. Ken opened the next hand 1C, and with S 9 H K-J-10-x-x D Q-x-x-x C A-Q-e, I felt pretty comfortable overcalling 1H. Dan C. bid 1S, and Dan H. doubled, which is for penalty in our system, indicating a good holding in diamonds. So, over Ken's 2C, I bid 2D. Dan C. bid 3C, and Dan H. bid 3D, confirming my assumption about his hand. Ken bid 4C, and I really wanted to double, but doubling them into game didn't seem prudent, even if I was pretty sure we'd set them. Dan did indeed have the ace of spades, so I got to ruff with the three of clubs, and we took two tricks in the red suits as well as my two guaranteed clubs for a three-trick set. They bid game in hearts on the next hand, though, and even though I had four trump to the queen, I only managed to get one trick. My next hand was S A-K H 9-x-x-x D A-K-x C K-J-x-x, definitely strong enough to bid 1C. Dan C. overcalled 3S, and Dan H. doubled to show a positive response to my bid. That was plenty for me to bid 3NT, and Dan raised me to 4NT, inviting slam. I should have taken him up on it, but I was worried about my power being concentrated in the short suits and not really having much more than the minimum. His S x-x-x H A-K-Q-10 D x-x C A-Q-x-x gave me eleven tricks on top, though, and it was only my decision to take the heart finesse instead of playing two top hearts at no cost that kept me from making the slam anyway. At game each, Dan H. opened 1C when I had S J-9 H x-x-x-x D A-x-x-x C K-10-x or so. That was barely enough for a positive 1NT response. He bid 2C, which I took to be Stayman, so I bid 2H. He bid 2NT, inviting game, but I'd stretched enough as it was. His hand was the stunning S A-K-x H A-x-x D Q-x C A-Q-J-x-x - nine tricks on top, and when the queen held the diamond lead, I made an overtrick. The opponents struck back with three of a major, and we went into the final hand with big partscores on both sides. Dan favored me with 2C, and Ken overcalled 3S. With S K H K-Q D K-Q-J-x-x-x-x C A-x-x, I felt quite comfortable bidding 4D, which was passed around to Ken. He doubled, and I strongly considered bidding 5C to show the fit there, but I figured I'd leave it up to Dan, since he seemed to be okay with the diamonds. I decided that if he redoubled, I'd bail to 5C. He did, and I did, and Dan C. doubled that. The opening lead was a heart to the king, ace, and two of clubs, and that was just the start. Dan's hand was S A-J-x D A-10-x-x C K-Q-x-x-x-x - good for a grand slam in diamonds, or in clubs as long as he's declarer (there's a diamond ruff waiting the other way). I think we could have found it despite the pre-empt, but that's in retrospect.

Today's Work: Things seem to be working the way I'd hoped they would, so I'm on track to get everything finished in time.

I stopped for fuel on the way home today, and since my tank was almost empty, I went to Kroger to use my fuel discount. Then I figured I might as well pick up the guacamole I'd forgotten to buy yesterday for my fajitas, which left me not enough time to make the fajitas. So I had lasagna, some bacon-wrapped jalapeños, and something called "Neptune salad", which seemed to be just a melange of seafood. Good stuff all together.

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Yes, I'm THAT Nidoking. Sometimes I write fanfiction... often I waste all my time playing video games and watching anime. But it's not a waste if I enjoy it, right? I can quote from a movie, video game, anime series, or British comedy apropos of just about any situation, and one of my main goals in life is to entertain people. (The other big one is amassing as much anime and manga as I can... see below for a progress report.) That's me in a nutshell. ("Help! I'm trapped in a nutshell! What a bloody great nutshell this is!")
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