Archive for February, 2008

Official site here….
The annual Linares chess tournament, usually played around the end of February, takes its name from the city of Linares in the Jaén province of Andalusia, Spain, in which it is held. It is sometimes described as the Wimbledon of chess. It is one of the strongest annual tournaments held on the chess tour, along with the Corus chess tournament and Dortmund chess tournament.
Read more about
LINARES here on Wikipedia…
Anand outplays Shirov in Linares chess

LINARES, February 29:   

Viswanathan Anand once again showed excellent technique to outplay Alexei Shirov in the eighth round of the Morelia-Linares chess as the second leg got underway in Linares.Anand’s fourth win in eight rounds took his tally to 5.5 points and extended his lead to a full point. Anand is now one point clear of his nearest rivals Lev Aronian and Magnus Carslen, who have 4.5 points each. Anand also benefited from the win against Shirov as Magnus Carlsen lost a seemingly winning game against Vassily Ivanchuk.In his game against Shirov, whom he beat for the FIDE World title back in 2000, Anand made the Latvian-born Spaniard pay for not being able to get adequate counter play. In Sveshnikov Sicilian, Shirov’s pawn weaknesses ultimately cost him the game. It took Anand 57 moves and some fine technique to bring in the full point.Vaselin Topalov, trying to press too hard for a win, saw the effort backfire as he lost to Aronian. The game was balanced for a long time, but Topalov overpressed and Aronian responded with a defensive exchange sacrifice. That ultimately resulted in a superior endgame for Aronian, who converted it in 65 moves.Ivanchuk squandered a winning chance against Carlsen and made a wrong choice of move on the 20th turn, which ran him into serious time trouble. Carlsen soon won the race between the opposing sides’ passed pawns and grabbed a full point.The game between Teimour Radjabov and Peter Leko was drawn, but it was as exciting as any of the decisive games.Anand finished the first leg in Morelia, Mexico with 4.5 points from seven rounds. The players had four days rest but traveled more than 24 hours and the time difference between Mexico and Spain is seven hours, resulting in considerable jet lag.  

Original Report can be read here ….

Read on the US-chess site HERE more about the standings after round 7! There are also games to play through of the Grandmasters participating in this tournament. More chess news…..

Aronyan resumes in Spain from fourth position Morelia/Linares resumed in Spain on Thursday (February 28), with Armenian grandmaster Levon Aronyan (with white) beating Bulgaria’s Veselin Topalov in the opening game.Aronyan finished the Mexican part of the super chess tournament in the fourth position (with 3.5 points in seven games) among eight grandmasters. The 2006 Morelia/Linares winner let Spain’s Alexey Shirov and Bulgaria’s Veselin Topalov (4 points) outstrip him after losing to Norway’s Magnus Carlsen in the last round on Sunday. India’s Vishy Anand, the reigning world champion who is defending his last year’s tournament win, was a clear leader with 4.5 points.On Friday, February 29, Aronyan, with white pieces, was due to play Anand.The Linares part of the tournament is due to end on March 7.Meanwhile, Armenian chess-player Movses Movsisyan, representing the United States, scored 5.5 points out of 7 and took the first prize in the Winter Open held in Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA. Forty chess-players participated in the tournament, according to http://www.armchess.am.And Armenian GM Varuzhan Hakobyan (also from the USA) scored 5.5 points out of 7 and shared the 2nd-6th places in the 3rd Open held in Morelia, Mexico. Hakobyan was behind the winner GM Ramirez (Costa Rica) with only half a point. Ninety-five chess players participated.

The “Magnicificent Eight” lined up in Spain, the players in this chess tournament.

On THIS LINK you can follow some of the results of round 10.

Peter Leko and his wife….

Vishy Anand and his wife…

Levon Aronian

More pictures/images : ….chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=4450
Game…round 1……Topalov against…Aronian……

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Jump into Fun with a Leap Day Party

Leap Year BagLeap Year only comes around every four years so why not make the most of it. This year start a Leap Year tradition that can play out for years to come. Treat Leap Day like a Snow Day. After all, it is sort of like a gift of a day that has been given to us. Whether you’re single, a couple, or part of a family, take advantage of the extra time. For starters, treat the day like a holiday. If you can, take the day off of work or school or simply leave the office early.For Singles:
Treat yourself to a day of pampering. Go out to a day spa alone or with friends and have the works done. If you don’t have the resources, turn your home into a spa. Light candles, soak in the tub, give yourself a facial, and curl up with a good book.
Take off on a day of adventure and pretend to be a tourist in your own hometown. Go places you usually just pass by. Pretend you are on a special vacation that you are only allowed to take once every four years.

Call up four friends and spend four hours playing cards, watching old movies or exercising.

For Couples:
Start a special tradition on each leap year, to have one spouse be king/queen for the day. Each Leap Year the honor changes. Start with a Crown or Tiara and let the royal pronouncements begin.

Invite another couple over for a day of fun and games. Get out the old Monopoly board, Twister and other fun games. Order in pizza and relax.

For Families:
Make it a party day. For kids and parents alike, the daily routine can sometimes become monotonous. Stave off the winter-time blues by throwing a Leap Year bash. Plan it for just the family or invite other friends and families to join you.
Select a slogan/theme to wrap your celebration around.

The following list will start you off.
• Leaping into Spring
• Stealing a Leap
• Takin’ Advantage of the Day

Use your slogan throughout your party on banners, personalized napkins, personalized glassware or stadium cups as well as personalized favors such as frames, bubbles and photo albums. These cheerful reminders of a fantastic event will bring back memories long after the last hurrah has been heard.

Decorate your event to coordinate with your slogan/theme. The frog is a natural tie to Leap Year celebrations. Our friend the frog brings with it the color green. Starting with green add a second and/or third color to complete your color theme. We recommend yellow and blue. Use these three colors to decorate the table, walls, doors, and ceilings.
Add a jovial 3-D Hanging Frog to your decor.

Next, add balloons, balloons and more balloons. Decorating with balloons is an easy and affordable way to transform a room into a magical partyland. Create towering balloon archways, glorious balloon columns and funfilled balloon garlands. Weave the three colors together (green, yellow and blue) to work with your color theme. If you are low on time and air, inflate a few dozen balloons and dangle them from the ceiling (upside-down) using curling ribbon. It’s a simple way to create with balloons without the use of helium.

If you haven’t decorated with gossamer, you’re missing the lily pad. Use gossamer streamers to create curtains in doorways, tent-like ceilings and swags around the windows. Large sections of gossamer can be used to create your leap year pond, marsh, and bank.

Don’t underestimate the importance of your head table. Decorate the table with brightly colored table skirting, confetti, metallic shred, green candles, and toy frogs.

Every party needs a game or activity to get the crowd going. Start with some Leap Year trivia. Famous events that happened on a leap year, name of the individual who came up with the leap year idea and celebrities with a leap year birthday are all fun ideas. Or, ask your guests to write down what else they wished they could do only once every four years and share it with the other guests. Give out awards for the most unique answers. Hang a large piece of flat paper on the wall and ask guests to write their predictions for what may happen in the next four years. Roll up the paper at the end of the party and save it for the next leap year. Or, using the large paper, make a number of lists/comments of what happened during the last 100 years only on every leap year. Ask guests to identify what leap year each set of comments relates to.

For added fun, set up your party in fours. Table of fours, four layer cake, four course meal, four candles on the cake, a friendly game of quarters or serve food that can easily be “quartered.”

Remember to have plenty of film on hand. These Leap Year Celebrations don’t come around too often!

If you have the time, plan special activities for your party that coincide with Leap Year. If you live in a warm climate, plan an outdoor “summer” leap year Olympics. Create events that include jumping like obstacle courses around the house for track, leaping into the pool for swimming, leaping and twirling for gymnastics. Be sure to have plenty of awards on hand to present to the winners. Make sure you have at least one award for each contestant. For those of us in cooler climates, have a winter leap year Olympics. Keep with the leaping theme. Create snow mounds to jump, ski or sled over. Create a special ice skating event with or without skates danced to music. It isn’t important what you do, but more important that everyone participate and have fun.

Keep the food tied to the events by starting the day with the breakfast of champions Wheaties  and serving plenty of carbohydrates for the Olympic athletes.

If you’re more the political type, set up a leap year election. Let the entire family cast their votes and predictions for the upcoming election. Decorate in red, white, and blue. Serve only red, white, and blue foods. Save your predictions and award prizes in November. This will result in the need for a second party in November to present prizes. Of course, one party that leads naturally to another is the best kind!

If you don’t have the time or energy to go all out this year, start small. Plan a special dinner with a simple frog theme. Set up a few decorations and cut everything in the meal in fourths. Treat the day as a found day to re-proclaim your love for yourself, your family and your friends.

I like this whole Idea of Shindigzparty!  

Original post HERE on Shindigzparty’s site!

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Read here about the book :”Circles in the Forest” and about “Big Foot”…

Afrikaans…scroll down….
Dalene Matthee was one of South Africa’s most talented authors, the best popular novelist that I know….. She wrote mainly in Afrikaans, but many of her books were translated into 14 other lanuages, such as Italian, Hebrew, Spanish, German, French, English, Icelandic, etc. Two of her books were filmed, “Fiela’s Child” and “Circles in the forest”…  Her first children’s novel…”Die Twaalfuur stokkie”… “The Twelve o’clock stick” was written in 1970. I LOVE this story and used to read the story to children in London-schools! They loved to listen to the Afrikaans Language and I explained the story via the pictures to them. It’s the best children’s story I’ve come across to explain to little children – age about 5-8 – the concept about time and the earth spinning around the sun… by using a stick in the sun. Read also about the memorial that was unveiled in Feb 2008 in honour of her!
HERE to read about Fiela’s Child, the movie.

Please click HERE to read about Dalene Matthee.

SA writers mourn Dalene Matthee
20/02/2005 21:20 – (SA)

Dalene Matthee – 1938-2005

Dalene Matthee dies 

Laetitia Pople , Die Burger

Cape Town – “Maybe she just held out until her new book, Die Uitgespoeldes, and its translation was done,” Dalene Matthee’s daughter Amanda said on Sunday after the author died in her sleep. The 66-year-old Matthee died in the Bayview clinic, Mossel Bay, early on Sunday morning. She was admitted to the clinic for heart failure on Thursday.

The death of Matthee – who was especially well known for her forest trilogy, of which the first, Kringe in ‘n Bos (Circles in a Forest, first appeared in 1984 and was reprinted 22 times – is being described as a huge loss for the Afrikaans reading public. “She was one of the most well-loved popular novelists in Afrikaans. “With her books such as Kringe, Fiela se Kind (Fiela’s Child), Pieternella van die Kaap and, more recently, Toorbos, she got the general Afrikaans public reading again, and she successfully bridged the gap between quality and popular literature,” said Eloise Wessels, chief executive of NB Publishers, on Sunday.

Novelist Elsa Joubert agrees. “She succeeded in getting people who never read Afrikaans to read in the language, and that’s been a wonderful contribution,” she says. The literary expert Wium van Zyl believes she was like Langenhoven.

“Like him, she had something to offer the intellectual reader and for the everyday reader. “She exposed the reader to various challenges. She was an ecologist and a mild feminist who considered the poor with attention and respect.”

If there’s someone whom the entire South African writers’ community mourns today, it would be Matthee, said Abraham H de Vries. “The voice of one of the best storytellers has fallen silent.“Only she could have written those forest stories – no one else could.”

Film-maker Katinka Heyns, who directed the movie based on the book Fiela se Kind, remembers how she spent two hours with Matthee in the Knysna forest. “The forest would tell Dalene if I may make the movie. She did not say a word and only sat listening. “And then I had to wait an enitre night before she gave the answer.”

Matthee was famous for the rigorous research she did for her books. She researched only her forest trilogy (Kringe, Fiela and Moerbeibos) for seven years, and Pieternella took three years’ research.

Matthee’s books were translated into 14 languages, including French, German, Spanish, Italian, Hebrew and Icelandic. She won the ATKV prize for good popular fiction four times and was honoured with a Swiss literature prize for her “energetic literary work and her passionate interest in nature conservation” in Zurich in 1993. Die Uitgespoeldes is the story of Moses Swart, a foundling raised by an Afrikaans family after being found under a jacket on the beach. Matthee is survived by her three daughters, Amanda and Hilary Matthee and Toni van der Walt. Her husband, Larius, died two years ago.
Origninal news article HERE as it was reported in 2005.
The forest novels
Kringe in ‘n bos (Circles in a forest) (1984)
Fiela se Kind (Fiela’s Child) (1985)
Moerbeibos (The Mulberry Forest) (1987)
Toorbos (Dream Forest) (2003)

Other published works
Die twaalfuurstokkie (The twelve-o’-clock stick) (1970)
’n Huis vir Nadia (A House for Nadia) (1982)
Petronella van Aarde, burgemeester (Petronella van Aarde,Mayor) (1983)
Brug van die esels (The Day The Swallows Spoke) (1993)
Susters van Eva (Sisters of Eve) (1995)
Pieternella van die Kaap (Pieternella from the Cape) (2000)
Die Uitgespoeldes (Driftwood) (2005)

 Dalene Matthee Memorial

Wow! I was sent SANPARKS-link by a blogger-friend, Chris after he’s read my post about Dalene Matthee and I want to thank him as this is really fantastic!
Dalene Matthee Memorial Unveiled at Wilderness National Park
On Saturday, 23 February 2008, close family, a few selected SANParks officials and the press witnessed the unveiling of a memorial in honour of the late writer, Dalene Matthee. It was Matthee ’s fervent wish to have her ashes scattered in the Knysna Forest and her three daughters saw it as a fitting remembrance to their mom, to have a special memorial erected in the place Matthee so loved.

“After three years this project has fallen into place and the family will be eternally grateful to the Wilderness National Park staff for making it all happen”, says Hillary Matthee, the writer’s youngest daughter.

SANParks contribution included the building of a boardwalk around the memorial, the renaming the big tree to the Dalene Matthee Big Tree and the marking of a circular hiking trail to the “Circles in a Forest” trail. The memorial, tree and trail will now form part of the park’s cultural heritage programme.

Matthee based many of her books, especially Fiela’s Child, Circles in a Forest and Moerbeibos on the life and people of the forest. Her books have been translated into 14 languages.

Dignitaries at the unveiling ceremony included Mvusy Songelwa (Regional Manager of the Garden Route National Parks) who unveiled the memorial, Edgar Nevuvhalani (People and Conservation Cultural Heritage Manager) and Dr. Razeena Omar (Executive Director: People and Conservation), who befittingly mentioned what an honour it is for SANParks to house a memorial for a woman who has done so much to bring nature and the forests to the hearts of all people who read her books.

The memorial, Big Tree and the Circles in a Forest Trail is situated at the Krisjan se Nek picnic site in the Goudveld Forest (close to Knysna), which now forms part of the Wilderness National Park. Jill Gordon, Park Manager, encourages all and especially school groups to come and pay homage to Matthee and explore the beauty of the forests

(Circles in the forest)

(Pieternella from the Cape)

(The Mulberry forest)

Nou wil ek meer oor van haar boeke – en ander skrywers se boeke –  in Afrikaans se… omdat ek van dit self gelees het en self ook ‘n blibioteek-onderwyseres is – Ja, ek het vir 9 jaar uit 2 skole se mediasentrums klas gegee. Honderde boeke is aangekoop – wat ‘n voorreg om die skole se mediasentrum-begroting by Uitgewers te gaan spandeer! Dit was gewoonlik ‘n daguitstappie! 

So is die volgende  boeke dan van my  gunstelinge vir kinders ouderdom 11-15/16…dalk ouer ook! Die Sakmense – Deur Maretha Maartens.  Wat ‘n fantastiese boek. Miriam…ek onthou darem nog haar naam, was ‘n meisie met ‘n donker gelaatskleur wie se familie onder “sakke” gebly het en groente/vrugte verkoop het om aan die lewe te bly. Nou kan ek nie eers meer die hoofkarakter se naam onthou nie – in elk geval, sy was ‘n meisie met slegs een nier. Sy het ‘n sakkie gehad in die plek van die tweede nier! Daarom die titel met ‘n tweeledige betekenis.”Sak+mense”- dis ‘n hartseer verhaal, maar dit leer jou ontsettend baie van die lewe wat so ‘n persoon het om te lei. Miriam was nie veronderstel om te werk nie, wy was nog minderjarig en daarom het sy ook gejok oor haar ouderdom, net om die werk te kry om die gesin te onderhou. ‘n Wonderlike boek wat ‘n MOET is – al is jy ‘n volwasse persoon.

Die tweede boek is “Die Boemelaars” –  ek het nooit die boek gelees nie, maar kan onthou dat die kinders nogal erg was oor die boek! “Plek van die dolfyne“…was gewild…en selfs “‘n Pakkie mieliepitte” ook!  “Die Inkvoel” is weer vir jonger kinders…so 8 -9 jaar…’n goeie boek! “Geagte mej Snob“… het ook heelwat kinders gelees, ook ‘n boek wat ek nog wou lees…

Voordat ek vergeet – kry bietjie van Marilee McCallighan se boeke om te lees – Wedloop teen die wind!” – dit is ‘n boek vir kinders so 12-15 jaar. Die boek was ook voorgeskryf vir ‘n sekere graad in die Hoerskool. Arno is die seun-karakter in die storie  en sy pa was ‘n prokureur. Hy was ‘n puik atleet en toe skielik begin hy toe epileptiese aanvalle kry en moes hy na ‘n spesiale skool gaan, wat ‘n groot vernedering vir die pa en ma was…veral die ma! Hulle was gesiene mense in die omgewing en sy kon nie verwerk/aanvaar dat haar talentvolle seun dit moes oorkom en na so ‘n skool moes gaan nie. Dit is ‘n PUIK boek! 

As jy nou regtig wil lag dat die trane loop…kry vir jou “Koningskind” deur Anita du Plessis…H&R was die uitgewers… en dit gaan oor ‘n Engelse bulhond, Keiser. Jy sal beslis nie spyt wees om die boek in die hande te kry nie! Lekker lees!

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This was really a fascinating story…. and I’ve copied part of the post here and also some comments…you can follow the link and read the entire post and more comments …also from Mark Bushwell….

I’m reading his auto-biography titled “Chess is my life”, its an awesome story. Full of character, and at times raw emotion. Its the kind of book that draws you in, Like an annotated chess game, Korchnoi still reviews and dissects his past, finding new threads and new meaning.

It was fantastic to meet a living legend in person. Twelve years ago I met Karpov in South Africa. Six years ago I was in the audience during the first game of the Kasparov versus Kramnik match. And now I’ve talked with an inspirational fighter and legend. The chess world, for me, is leaping off the printed pages into my world.

comments from here:

Read the entire post HERE …. on ChessVault.
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Cuddle day


I’ve read somewhere that it’s cuddle day in the USA tomorrow… in South Africa it was early in January…in Australia in early February…follow the link in the comments…for a nice card!



I feel lonely!

I feel lonely!



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 I’ve thought to blog a few games which I’ve thoroughly enjoyed and not necessarily because I think my play was good/fantastic/brilliant… in each game I will highlight what I like about the game. I will soon start to blog some Master’s games too… so keep watching… at the moment I am blogging them on my blogger-site (link on my blogroll), as the i-frame does work in the Blogger-platform.

In this game – a rated game – I played white and both our ratings were very close. My rating is like a yo-yo literally… but I do play many friendlies too against players with higher ratings to keep improving my play.

If you play through the game, you might also wonder why my Rook wasn’t taken with move 27, but the Pawn instead….perhaps he wanted to save his Knight…like I sometimes like to do…or he had something else in mind… With move 49 I offered my Knight…something I do not like to do most of the time! …but I saw an opportunity…. see move 52…I like move 55…my Knight was really save…can you see why I sacrificed my Rook with move 56?… the “girls” rule in this game… like one player said to me…see the end of the game to see why he said that… 😉

Click on the link to play through the game…Nikita1 vs. Papakudos

The next game was really a tough one. My opponent was a 350+ stronger than I am…and I played black. Early in this game my King was in trouble and later in the game we  swapped Queens.  For quite a time from move 32 on…. it was a matter of who’s going to give in first… lol! With move 54 my Knight was saved…. Move 58…. I offered my Rook… can you see why….look at move…. 59…. my opponent resigned the game when he realised there was no way he could win the game…- more games to follow –

Click the link to play through the gameab33 vs. Nikita1 

In the next game, which was a friendly, I played  against a player with a rating with 300+ higher than mine.. I played black….I still have to comment more about this game as we’re still busy with another game nearing its end and I will add it to this post with comments in the next couple of days… I used my Knight to support my Queen in the checkmate position, plus a Pawn I was lucky to have to complete the game checkmate. Click on the link to play through the game:chowds vs. Nikita1

I promise to have some comments on this game too later on this week…this was a rated game – I played black – and my opponent’s rating was about 250 higher than mine… he resigned the game… Click on the link to play through the game:WOZ619 vs. Nikita1

Die woord ‘skaak’ kom van die Persiese woord ‘sjah’, wat koning beteken. Ook die woord ‘mat’ is Persies en beteken ‘dood’.

nikita.jpg http://rpc.technorati.com/rpc/ping

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Picture: nationalgeographic.com/adventure/travel/south_africa.html

Image: http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/8b6c8/fac/
 A piece of humour….

South Africa

In the beginning God created day and night. He created day for rugby matches, going to the beach and braais. He created night for going jolling, sleeping and braais. God saw that it was good. Evening came and morning came and it was the Second Day.

On the Second Day God created water – for surfing, fishing, swimming and braais on the beach. God saw that it was good. Evening came and morning came and it was the Third Day.

On the Third Day God created the Earth to bring forth plants – to provide food, malt and yeast for beer and wood for braais. God saw that it was good. Evening came and morning came and it was the Fourth Day.

On the Fourth Day God created animals and crustaceans for chops,
boerewors, steak and prawns for braais. God saw that it was good.
Evening came and morning came and it was the Fifth Day.

On the Fifth day God created an oke – to go to the rugby, enjoy the beach, drink the beer and eat the meat and prawns at braais. God saw that it was good. Evening came and morning came and it was the Sixth Day.

On the Sixth Day God saw that this oke was lonely and needed someone to go to the rugby, surf, drink beer, eat and stand around the braai with. So God created buddies, and God saw that they were good okes. God saw that it was good. Evening came and morning came and it was the Seventh Day.

On the Seventh Day God saw that the okes were tired and needed a rest. So God created Chicks – to clean the house, bear children, wash, cook and clean the braai. Evening came and it was the end of the Seventh day. God sighed, looked around at the twinkling braais, heard the hiss of opening beer cans and the raucous laughter of all the okes and chicks, smelled the aroma of grilled chops and sizzling prawns, and God saw that it was not just good, it was very good, He created a great place and HE called it SOUTH AFRICA.

Amen Brother!


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