[BLML] When the agreement lacks mutual understanding.

Ed Reppert blackshoe at mac.com
Fri Apr 20 04:22:26 CEST 2012

On Apr 19, 2012, at 8:43 PM, Robert Frick wrote:

> On Wed, 18 Apr 2012 17:52:06 -0400, Ed Reppert <blackshoe at mac.com> wrote:
>> On Apr 18, 2012, at 4:41 PM, Robert Frick wrote:
>>> I once spent a 30-minute car ride with a new partner, and discussion was
>>> mostly of the form, "Cappelletti?" "Sure" In other words, a lot of the
>>> agreements between players is agreement on convention names. You can't
>>> have that all be no agreement.
>>> The second problem is that you would end up with players having a good
>>> mutual understanding and being require to say only no agreement
>> If, at the game after your thirty minute car ride, your RHO opens 1NT,  
>> you bid 2C, partner alerts, is asked, and explains it as "diamonds or a  
>> major-minor two suiter", and you thought you were showing any single  
>> suiter, clearly you do not have an agreement, or partner has had a  
>> momentary brain fart. IN either case, the laws obligate you, at the  
>> appropriate time, to call the director and then explain that in your  
>> opinion your partner's explanation was in error, and that the correct  
>> explanation is "any single suiter". There is no "requirement to say only  
>> no agreement", because that would be a lie. If, after this round, you  
>> discuss the difference between "Cappelletti" and "modified Cappelletti"  
>> and agree on one or the other, you have a definite agreement. If you  
>> don't agree on one or the other, you don't have an agreement. Why is  
>> this difficult to understand?
> Hi Ed. You can reread the above. To me, it is saying that when I have one  
> understanding and my partner has another understanding, then I have to  
> call the director and I have to tell the opponents my understanding.
> That was exactly the situation for Hand #2 today, but there you did not  
> like this ruling. But you didn't say how you would rule.
> Why did you insist on self-divulgence here and not like it there? You did  
> not give any explanation for not liking that ruling for Hand #2.
> Again, I invite you to formulate an answer to this question -- When you  
> and your partner have different understanding of a verbal agreement, what  
> are the opponents entitled to know?
> (You can treat this like some bitter debate if you want, but I am really  
> trying to learn your position on this. It is not easy to get people to  
> take a position, and I respect Richard and Eric for doing that even if I  
> don't agree with their answers.)

I did not say anything about "self-divulgence". That whole idea is nonsense. Nothing in the law requires a player to tell opponents what he intended by his bid, or what he has in his hand. What the law *does* require is that if you disagree with your partner's description of your partnership understanding, you have to tell the opponents what *you* understand it to be. That is not the same thing at all.

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