[BLML] Reply to Grattan (agreements about conventions)

Robert Frick rfrick at rfrick.info
Sat Sep 25 15:05:43 CEST 2010


On Sat, 25 Sep 2010 03:34:23 -0400, Thomas Dehn <blml at arcor.de> wrote:

> Robert Frick <rfrick at rfrick.info>
>> On Fri, 24 Sep 2010 14:28:06 -0400, Thomas Dehn <blml at arcor.de> wrote:
>>
>> > Robert Frick <rfrick at rfrick.info>
>> >> On Wed, 22 Sep 2010 00:37:38 -0400, Thomas Dehn <blml at arcor.de>  
>> wrote:
>> >>
>> >> > Robert Frick <rfrick at rfrick.info> wrote:
>> >> >> On Mon, 20 Sep 2010 03:50:59 -0400, Grattan
>> >> <grandaeval at tiscali.co.uk>
>> >> >> wrote:
>> >> >>
>> >> >> >>> 3. If opponent looks at the System Card, sees the name
>> >> >> >>> of 'x' on the card but no explanation of it and without
>> >> >> >>> enquiry applies to it his own interpretation, then he is
>> >> >> >>> liable for his own misunderstanding since no opponent
>> >> >> >>> has given him misinformation (see Law 21A). The name
>> >> >> >>> of a convention is not an explanation of it. +=+
>> >> >>
>> >> >> I do not think I would rule this way.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> For example, I see that two players have RKC on their convention  
>> card
>> >> >> and
>> >> >> conclude that the 5H bidder does not have the queen of trumps,  
>> being
>> >> >> damaged when he does. I then find that these players share the
>> >> >> "awareness"
>> >> >> that 5H shows the queen and 5S denies the queen. I would call the
>> >> >> director
>> >> >> and expect to be protected.
>> >> >>
>> >> >> If I am not protected, I would hesitate to refer to the opponents'
>> >> >> convention card.
>> >> >
>> >> > The RKC (also RKCB) convention has
>> >> > evolved over time, and there exist multiple variations.
>> >> > If they play that, say, 5H shows two out of five keycards
>> >> > without slam interest and 5S shows two with slam interest,
>> >> > that convention is called Roman Keycard, or also
>> >> > Roman Keycard Blackwood.
>> >> >
>> >> > It is up to the regulation authorities to have regulations
>> >> > that instruct players to provide correct, complete, non-confusing
>> >> > information on their convention card. If an entry such
>> >> > as "RKC" is legal usage of the convention card in ACBL-land,
>> >> > then I think in my example you are not due any redress if
>> >> > damaged - their convention card was filled in correctly.
>> >>
>> >> For example odd-even is just a checkbox on the ACBL convention card.  
>> In
>> >> response to "what are your discards?", "Odd even" is a common,
>> >> usually-accepted answer (for people who know it).
>> >>
>> >> Everyone plays that odd shows a liking for the suit.
>> >
>> > It is not true that "everybody plays that odd shows
>> > a liking for the suit", as it is very unsound to play that.
>> >
>> > You want a D switch, all you can spare
>> > is one of your three small spades, which
>> > happen to be 357. You discard a spade,
>> > and partner switches to a spade.
>> >
>> > Or you want a D switch to your DAKT842, and all you
>> > can spare is one of those small diamonds. You discard
>> > the D8, and partner duly plays a spade.
>> >
>> > Next board, you have the DAK953. You discard
>> > the D3. Partner holds the D48, and can see the DT82
>> > in dummy. Partner thus concludes that you do
>> > not have an even diamond to discard, and that
>> > you might have been forced to discard an odd diamond
>> > even though you actually want a C. Partner then
>> > switches to a C.
>> >
>> > After that has happened a few times, you'll
>> > quickly modify that method. Once you have
>> > put such modifications into place to avoid
>> > absurd disasters which no other method
>> > of showing suit preference creates, you
>> > no longer play "odd shows a liking for the suit".
>> >
>> >
>> > Then, there still are quite a few additional variations:
>> > Under which circumstances are the discards "odd-even",
>> > and when is some other method in effect? Say, you
>> > can see that partner needs the count in a certain suit.
>> > Do you then signal count? You led the S6. two tricks
>> > later, you discard the S2. Is that "odd-even", or are
>> > you clarifying the S length?
>> >
>> >
>> > IOW: a mere "odd/even discards" is very incomplete
>> > information.
>> >
>> > Just stop trying to find an example where
>> > "everybody" plays the same. It doesn't exist.
>>
>> I am wondering "so what?" How is this relevant?
>>
>> My partner and I have the verbal conversation of just "odd even  
>> discards".
>
> No, you don't. You play quite a few hands together.

I am not sure why you are saying this. The laws cannot handle the  
situation where people just make a verbal agreement?

In fact, I frequently agree to play odd-even with people whom I have never  
played a hand with.

Let me put this another way. The question is what agreement players are  
making when they agree by just a conventional name. So the question is  
what agreement we make when we say "odd-even". The question is not how  
implicit agreements form and you just make the discussion irrelevant when  
you add that.




> That
> gives you an understanding how your partner will
> approach situations where the small cards he can afford
> to discard are insufficient to signal what he wants to signal.
> That understanding must be disclosed to opponents.

Of course I should. No one does it. Show I throw out all of the members of  
my club?

>
>> Our opponents ask what we play and I say odd-even discards. They ask  
>> what
>> the discard of an odd card means.  I don't have to tell them anything
>> because "odd-even" is ambiguous?
>
> You have to inform opponents correctly about your methods.
> The fact that your "odd-even" method is unsound does
> not relieve you of that obligation.

Well, I have to inform the opponents of our understandings, not our  
methods. See L40A1 I have checked odd-even on our card and tell them  
odd-even when they ask. Is there a problem if my partner and I have  
reversed the meaning of odd and even?

I am arguing that there is.




>
> Your partner discards the spade 3, on a hand where he
> actually does not like spades. Not as a deliberate false card,
> but simply because that was the card he could spare.
>
> Opponents ask about your methods. You tell them that
> you play "odd-even", or that the spade 3 shows that he likes
> spades.
>
> I will then happily rule that you misinformed opponents.

I will happily appeal and expect to win. I do not have to explain basic  
bridge knowledge to the opponents.

You will not find any committee members at my club that want to have to  
explain as you describe below.



> You should have told them that if he could choose between
> an odd and an even spade to discard, then discarding the
> odd spade would indicate that he somewhat likes spades,
> and discarding the even spade would indicate that he somewhat
> dislikes spades (but only provided that this isn't one of those
> hands where he decides to false card).

That would annoy them. They want to know if I am playing odd-even. They  
expect me to tell them if I am doing a variation of odd-even that they  
don't expect.




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