from self
to happening...
––from the forthcoming
Oblio's Cap

brief tx

The Forthcoming Oblio's Cap

Email me: beau (at) oblios-cap (dot) com.

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Sat Aug 1 00:00:00 UTC 2015



Roy Hayes Memorial Chess Academy


To develop your chess vision, start with these:


The first position comes with two questions: Do you want the pawn, do you want the move. The second is white to move and a) avoid stale-mate, b) win by forced mate in five; the third is the starting position; the fourth mate of white on white's second blunder and black's second move.

Rather than thinking of your next game as a set of isolated moves, adopt instead a general plan of getting each piece off it's starting square, and only accepting even swaps. If you think you are getting a Queen for a pawn, probably you are getting set up with a sacrifice. If you are taking a knight for a knight there is somewhat less chance of being swindled. Besides, your first job is spotting check to your king before the other side does.

We favor the Ruy Lopez, but you can apply this approach to any opening: Pick three moves you intend to make regardless what the other side does, then develop your pieces taking only even swaps. For beginners, which is what most of us are, most of our lives, this is more than enough to play and win and play and lose and play and play again, which, of course, is the real win.

Things I should have mastered decades ago:

  1. rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/8/8/PPPPPPPP/RNBQKBNR
  2. rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/4P3/8/PPPP1PPP/RNBQKBNR
  3. rnbqkbnr/pppp1ppp/8/4p3/4P3/8/PPPP1PPP/RNBQKBNR
  4. rnbqkbnr/pppp1ppp/8/4p3/4P3/5N2/PPPP1PPP/RNBQKB1R
  5. rnbqkb1r/pppp1ppp/5n2/4p3/4P3/5N2/PPPP1PPP/RNBQKB1R
  6. rnbqkb1r/pppp1ppp/5n2/1B2p3/4P3/5N2/PPPP1PPP/RNBQK2R
  7. rnbqk2r/pppp1ppp/5n2/1B2p3/1b2P3/5N2/PPPP1PPP/RNBQK2R

And of course, ...

A local copy of the above: just the boards.

Here, now, being. You?


Wrens are medium-small to very small birds. The Eurasian wren is among the smallest birds in its range, while the smaller species from the Americas are among the smallest passerines in that part of the world. They range in size from the white-bellied wren, which averages under 10 cm (3.9 in) and 9 g (0.32 oz), to the giant wren, which averages about 22 cm (8.7 in) and weighs almost 50 g (1.8 oz). The dominating colors of their plumage are generally drab, composed of gray, brown, black, and white, and most species show some barring, especially to tail and/or wings. No sexual dimorphism is seen in the plumage of wrens, and little difference exists between young birds and adults.[1] All have fairly long, straight to marginally decurved bills.

Wren via wikimedia

Prospero's Island

coming soon

Mon Feb 16 07:25:00 EST 2009


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Ken is the name of the trigram of the youngest son, it is also the trigram for mountain, and incorporates stillness and boundary. The trigram is binary 4, and this hexagram is binary 36. Note again how the increment of one unit has caused a flip of three lines; such is the nature of Change in the book of Changes.

A doubled trigram, of course, represents a condition in which the inner and outer aspects are aligned. The inner face of this hexagram is stillness and boundaries, as is the outer. This congruence between inner and outer aspects is a feature in itself, occuring 8 out of 64 times, once for each of the trigrams.

That said, the hexagram Ken signifies stillness and boundaries, just like the trigram. The text speaks in particular of bringing stillness to the back, and it is hard to imagine the rest of the body flouncing about whilst the back is thus stilled. To my eye, there is another relationship, that of the spine in the body to a ridge of mountains on land, like refering to the Rockies as the spine of the continent. Living as I have for the past few years nestled up to the San Gabriel foothills, I have come to appreciate this hexagram more than I ever could have growing up in Long Beach. But while the shore of the ocean or a lake or even the path of a river can be used as a logical boundary, mountains are different. If they are less binding today, thanks to rail travel and air travel, mountains are still barriers with which to reckon.

Perhaps one of the least understood aspects of what folks call "setting boundaries" is that announcing one is going to set boundaries largely defeats the purpose. When one draws a line in the sand, it is usually seen as a challenge (and, indeed, it is most often done as a challenge). But when one actually sets a boundary, rather than merely announcing it, one seeks to emulate the mountains, still, calm, impassive and unpassable, discouraging challenge rather than inviting it.

Ken, then, is the hexagram for stillness and boundary, within and without. Soon it will change.

Email me: beau (at) oblios-cap (dot) com.

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