Blogs July – September 2023

We’re having our first tournament at the Long Beach bridge club in more than 4 years — the Hallo-One-Day will be Sunday, October 29 at 930am. Registration is open, and as always, if you sign up and pay before the deadline, Saturday, October 21, you will be entered into the drawing of getting your entry fee returned to you the morning of the tournament – it will be like playing with “haunted” house money.
So get on your broomsticks you little monsters and once again dip into the bubbling cauldron of competition for a word O’lantern for the ages.
The link to the tournament flyer is below. Email me at (or call me) at 310-497-5490 if you plan on coming. You can pay via PayPal, Venmo or check!
Paul Rickhoff and I look forward to seeing you all once again!
Dave Postal

Sad News
Our long time Scrabble friend Fern Trausch passed away last weekend. Fern has been a loyal scrabble club player for many, many years in southern California and especially in Laguna Woods. This mild mannered lady was a fierce competitor across the scrabble board. On many times when I was out of town Fern stepped up and became the Club #350 acting director. Her funeral will take place this coming Saturday morning on 9/9 at 10 AM in Lake Forest, CA. We’ll all miss Fern.

Laguna Woods, California. In 2023, on a very warm September morning living in Laguna Woods Village people are waking to another leisurely day of filled with endless activities designed for the community of 50+. Can you say ‘multi-cultural’? There are birds of every color and size whom have migrated here from every part of the world. While one has to be at least 50 to purchase a condo here, the community has been singled out by the TV show 60 Minutes as being one of the healthiest and active senior communities that exists. There are more than 100 residents who are more than 100 years old among the 20,000+ residents.
While this may sound like a commercial for LWV, I’m just giving some background for the rest of the story.
I was looked up as a baby when I moved her in the year 2000, being only 57 back then. A lot of water had gone under my bridge by then and relished what life has served up to me . . .l but if you are human and admit there there have been prices to pay along life’s journey.
The fire trucks and ambulances, as a rule, turn off their sirens when they enter the gates of the village. Not everyone here lives to be 100. The emergency vehicles know the streets and addresses well. I’ve had occasion to dial ‘911’ over the years (both times for accidentally miscalculating and overdosing on insulin). I obviously did not pass yet.
Whatever it is that you enjoy doing, you’ll find it here in the village: golf; water aerobics; poker; ballroom dancing; theater; scrabble; bridge; Tai Chi; catered dinners; horseback riding, tennis et al. But it’s the people you meet and share time with that makes every activity special. If you think that you have a lived a special story . . . there are 20,000+ stories in the village and old folks love to talk and share.
The COSTS. The big one is LOSS. But, you only experience loss after you’ve had something. Ooooh the people I have known; Ooooh the stories I have heard and shared. Gone to flowers everyone.
My melancholy is spurred today by this week’s loss of Fern Trausch, a scrabble player and neighbor. A few weeks ago by Tom Titus a scrabble friend. A memorial last Saturday for Maliha Mahmood and so on and so on.
But that’s all a part of life. Every evening on the news they share the passing of celebrities: Jimmy Buffet; Pee Wee Herman; Bob Barker. For me, it makes me reflect on my own mortality.
The older we become the more likely it is that we’ll lose our friends and family. I think about how difficult it must have been for my mom to be the last one standing be living to 96 1/2.
I hereby resolve to double my appreciation for the friends and family I have and to create more friendships to refill my dance-card.
I appreciate YOU.

Thanks for all the kind Birthday wishes.
My project for 81 in 23-24 is to bring some fresh meat into the scrabble clubs and tournament. My friends are fast fading away.
If you want to start a scrabble club anywhere and have a potential audience with some resources please share.
(949) 510-1673

Okay, I know you’ve been sitting on the edge of your seat wondering how I played in the DAY 2 scrabble tournament in Dana Point, CA.
I was THE BOMB. I bombed out. I only won 1 of 6, but I lived down to the expectations because I was rank 7th among the 8 players in my division. The one game that I won was due to playing the bingo ‘STRIGILS’ and winning the CHALLEGE against it.. I learned it years ago when Stu Goldman played it against me in a tournament. Bless his memory (and mine).
I only lost Game #1 by 4 points. And another game I lost on the last play when my opponent Bingo’ed out with a 9-letter word MARRIAGES for 90+ points.
I still had a FUN day in spite of losing. Today’s bingos were: RAGOUTS; STRIGILS; STRAINS; AIRLINE; SAPIENT; & TITTERED.
I was told that yesterday’s play OVERSAY was phoney.
Tomorrow there is one group pf 16 and I’m ranked about 7 or 8..

I’m thrilled to report that I had a GREAT tournament today in Dana Point, CA. I was in Division 2 in the top spot. It was a 6 game, Swiss paired event in the WGPO format. I finished 1st in a field of 8 players. My totals were 4/2 +225 which earned me $140. Players are there from as far away as Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon + locals. During the 6 games I played 9 bingos. Two phonies that I played were challenged off the board: ENROLEES and PIECHART. The good ones were: OVERSAY; TOONIES; REDIALED; ABIDING; TEENIER; WORSENS; MOBSTERS; DELISTS. My first play in game #1 was NIMBLE which I later added to it and made BENIMBLES. It didn’t get challenged; Thanks JACK.
Tomorrow I will be #8 of 8 in Division #1. Wish me well.