ARTICLE #30 [First published in June 1990 Chicagoland Backgammon Newsletter]

Why Me?

How could this happen! I lost! Is there no justice left in the game? I made all of the proper plays, but where did it get me?

At one point, I felt a mastery over both the game and my opponent. He may have created his trouble, but I capitalized on it by boxing him into the corner. He was mine for the taking -- a great trophy rewarding the hunt. As I dispassionately looked at what probably would occur, I got bored with the effort. The challenge of my opponent had been more interesting. Seeking a thread to unravel the mystery, I found the only combination that would unlock everything. In the excitement to strut my mathematical prowess, I had obviously invoked the potential for a five-roll parlay.

The lights dimmed, the thunder roared, and the winds whipped up to seize me in mid-sentence. Startled and fearful, I realized that I, a mere mortal had dared to impugn the power of the dice gods. Exploding out of the dark cavernous dice cup came forth the messengers of doom.

My opponent’s roll of aces had eyes, capturing two key points. In an accommodating gesture, I followed with boxes, destroying my timing. His next roll was double 3s, instantly preparing a prime. And then I threw double nickels, leaving a a dreaded fly shot. It might have been 17-to-1 against getting hit, but in my sinking heart, I felt he couldn’t miss. With clenched teeth, I waited for the other shoe to fall. You know the outcome.

Demoralized and in shock, my arrogant posture slumped from that long “hour” of torture that in reality, took only two minutes. Why me?

Fortune Cookie
Backgammon is a game of changing percentages and perceptions. Absolutes enter only at the end of the conflict.

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