Monday, June 23, 2008

" long as they spell your name right"

P.T. Barnum liked to say that “there’s no such thing as bad press, as long as they spell your name right.”

Barnum was also a contemporary of Alonzo Wheeler Jerome.

With that short intro, I bring you a quote from National Master Eric Schiller, who has probably been the highest-rated player writing the most (something [anything!]) about the Jerome Gambit until International Master Gary Lane recently brought the opening up in his ChessCafe column.
From Schiller's Gambit Chess Openings (2002)

The High-Risk Gambits
The following gambits are considered terrible for the gambiteer, as far as computer evaluations are concerned...
One might think that they are entirely unsound but it is not always so. Some of these are generally considered playable in the books, others are acknowledged as refuted. In a few cases, the computer evaluation seems way off because experience has shown good results...
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Bc4 Bc5 4.Bxf7+
This is another cyberspace gambit.
Virtually no attention was paid to this reckless move until its supporters started talking about it on the Internet. It can't be found in recent tournament games, and there is a good reason: It stinks.

White whips up a brief attack, easily parried, and then spends a long time trying to justify the sacrifice. A popular gambit in cyberspace, but in the real world, it only succeeds in games where Black is a very weak player.

Uh, thanks Eric.
I think.

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