First of all, thank you for your contributions yesterday on how to handle unwanted suitors and stories of unrequited gay love.
Catching up on other chess blogs, I was struck by an observation: most of them are trying to get better at chess.
Yes, I enjoy the game and want to be good. I have a (fairly) competitive spirit. But the amount of time I dedicate to chess improvement has been close to nil for a long time.
I started competitive chess in 1998, playing until 2000, when I took 5 years off before jumping back in. Several months were (relatively) hardcore, actually playing 40 or so rated games before tapering off again. Even then, almost all my time was spent playing; studying was relegated to when I was taking a dump in the lavatory.
Right now, I’m 1600-ish, the same as 10 years ago without putting effort into improvement. What would happen if I tried? Does the thought of “maybe there’s an Expert somewhere in here” motivate me enough to work?
More likely, the “I’m sufficiently skilled so most people can’t dismiss me; that’s good enough” win out (again).