Day Three of the National Scrabble Championship found me once again the back row of Division 2. The down-and-up day included one gift win and three losses in the morning, and a heartening three-game winning streak in the afternoon, releasing a surge of serotonin that extended through a lovely dinner with friends and an evening Scrabble session at home.
I know you'd love to see photos from all these venues, but all I can offer is more Scrabble boards. I'll try to do better tomorrow, the last day of the tournament.
Don't be alarmed if you don't know these words. This board has been “blocked” for an upcoming game to demonstrate that all 100 tiles are present. Most blocking isn't this artistic.
By 10:15 a.m. I'd already lost ths game to an on line nemesis from Philadelphia. Subtitle of this photo is “Still Life With Scrabble Board” as some of the other tools of the trade are showing - scoresheet, tile bag, blank recording slip. The tiles at the top of the board were unplayed in my rack when my opponent went out (played her last tile).
This game was my gift win. My opponent made just the right (wrong) play so that I could play all my tiles for GOVErNED (lower case means letter is represented by the blank) and go out. I was proudest of finding POTPIES in this game. SOLANGE* is a phony, that is, a word not found in the Scrabble dictionary, or perhaps in any other dictionary either. I should have played TANGELOS, but I got credit for SOLANGE when my opponent didn't challenge the play.
All three bingos in this one were played by my opponent in a game he won by about 70 points. Note the lovely decorative accents on the lucite base for the board. It turns out that sTRAITED* is phony. sTRIATED made from the same letters is good. I'm surprised my opponent didn't play it.
More traditional blocking of 4 groups of 25 each to show that 100 tiles are present. This shot is clearly upside down, though it doesn't really matter, and perhaps adds to the artistic effect, don't you think?
I lost this game by about 20 points. My opponent got SiLVERS late in the game to pull out the win. Note my lovely play of AIKIDO (a Japanese art of self defense), a fun word to play.
A big win with my own board and tiles. The little play of QAT and QI in the middle of the board (45 points) made the difference. QAT is a mildly narcotic plant smoked in the Middle East (also spelled KAT and KHAT). QI is a Chinese life force (also spelled KI)
Back to the lovely board for a lovely game, at least for me. I won easily with plays like PETTERS, cLEARING and ZINEB (an insecticide). I also had a great time chatting with this opponent both before and after the game.
Two in a row on lovely board 65 (and three wins in a row overall) after this game. This game would be considered a defensive struggle–only one bingo for each player. COOEE (to cry out shrilly) is a very handy word for disposing of extra Os and Es.