Page 58


May 2016


Larchmont Chronicle

Dining & Entertainment Guide Partners play on the same wave length and win with a ‘splinter’   A splinter is a bid by responder (generally, although opener may splinter, also) that shows four card trump support, a singleton or void and opening hand values. It is generally made in response to a major suit opening, although it may be made in response to a minor suit opening. Let’s say your partner opens 1 Heart and you hold the following: ♠ KQJ ♥ A987 ♦4 ♣ KT987 That’s a pretty good hand, don’t you think? It’s one you’d open. If you didn’t have a specialized bid, you’d probably bid 2 Clubs, then jump to 4 Hearts, depending on your partner’s response. However, is there a way to tell partner that you have a singleton diamond? What do you think? Can you think of a way? May-

be kick her twice under the table? OK, that’s illegal, so you don’t want to do that. How do you tell your partner that you have an unusual hand here and describe it in one bid? Give up? The answer, as you might have guessed, is that you make a bid called a splinter. I love this bid. How do you splinter? You make a double jump bid and bid your singleton (or void, as the case may be). A double jump is a bid that skips 2 levels of bidding. So if you open 1 Club and partner bids 2 Spades, that’s a jump, but only skips one level (it skips 1 Spade). So, a double jump would be a response of 3 Spades, because that skips two levels of bidding, 1 Spade and 2 Spades.     So in response to Partner’s opening bid of 1 Heart, you bid 4 Diamonds (skipping 2

Readers support bridge column Biddy Liebig wrote: “Great idea.” Robert Reeves e-mailed: “Resounding ‘yes,’ by all means!” From Judy Rosenberg: “Yes!” Iris Craddock said: “I would love a bridge column in the Chronicle. Thanks!” Alex & Marianne Tereszcuk wrote: “[We] enjoyed reading your new column by Grand Slam on bridge techniques. You have our support to continue it in the future.” And, in a longer letter on page 2 of Section 1, Bill Ahmanson suggests organizing a local bridge club for beginners! Grand Slam responds at the end of this month’s column.

Diamonds and 3 Diamonds)! That tells partner three things

Bridge Matters by

Grand Slam in one bid: 1) You have a singleton or void in diamonds; 2) You have at least four cards in her opening bid, hearts; and 3) Your hand has opening values, at least 13 HCP. All that information in one bid! The bid is obviously game forcing and it’s exploring for slam. The bid may also be made by opener. Assume you are opener with the following hand: ♠ AKQ ♥ AQ87 ♦4 ♣ KT987 And you open 1 Club. Partner responds 1 Heart. You may jump to 4 Diamonds promising 4 Hearts and a singleton (or void) Diamond. This can be a little risky since partner could be responding with only 6 HCP, so it shouldn’t be made by opener unless opener has a strong hand with extra values,

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SUNDAY, MAY 8, 2016

like the hand above that can play for game against 6 HCP. With the singleton Diamond and at least a 4-4 trump fit, this hand re-evaluates to 21 points, giving three for the singleton. When you have at least a 4-4 trump fit, shortness values increase to the following: void 5 points singleton 3 points doubleton 1 point The problem with the bid is that if you’re not used to it,

your partner could misinterpret it and pass. Then you’re playing the contract in your singleton/void (don’t laugh; it has happened to me). That’s not much fun. So, if you decide you want to play splinters, be sure you and your partner are on the same wavelength. Grand Slam is the nom de plume for an author of a bestselling book on bridge, an ACBL accredited director and a Silver Life Master.

Greater Wilshire Bridge Club? Best way to learn is to play When queried, our “Bridge Matters” writer, Grand Slam, had this reaction to Bill Ahmanson’s letter on Page 2 of Section 1: I think Bill’s idea is a good one. Why don’t you editors speak with [some of the people who have communicated with the Larchmont Chronicle] about setting something like that up in the neighborhood? [One of those correspondents] has written a really good little primer for beginners and would be a wonderful teacher. As Bill suggested, the best way to learn bridge is to play. … If [beginners] get a group together and all read the same book and play at each other’s homes in social, potluck games, that’s the best way to learn. Going to bridge lessons, like they have at bridge clubs, is not the way to learn bridge. I know so many people who have been taking lessons for years and never get any better. That’s because they learn something new every week and never have a chance to play each thing they learn long enough to get proficient at it before they’re taught something new the next week. You have to learn playing with people of your own level and then talk about the hands and progress slowly, learning one thing well before progressing on to the next. The best way to learn is to play

and make mistakes. When you make a mistake, you remember it and generally don’t make it again. When you’re just told what to do by a teacher, it simply doesn’t stick.

Chronicle readers:

If you have interest in organizing or participating in bridge gatherings for residents of the Greater Wilshire area, please send contact information to, and our editors will see what they can do to match up interested neighbors! Beginners only, please!

Film Festival tickets on sale Usher in the summer with the Los Angeles Film Festival, which runs from Wed., June 1 through Thurs., June 9. Opening and closing night films will be screened at Arclight Cinemas in the heart of Hollywood, 6360 Sunset Blvd. The primary venue for the festival will be the Arclight in Culver City at 9500 Culver Blvd. Sponsored by Film Independent, the festival last year premiered more than 46 independent feature films and is a qualifying festival for prestigious awards in the film industry. Visit filmindependent. org/la-film-festival.

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LC 05 2016  

Local news for Hancock Park • Windsor Square • Fremont Place • Park LaBrea • Larchmont Village • Miracle Mile • Los Angeles, local news, Lar...

LC 05 2016  

Local news for Hancock Park • Windsor Square • Fremont Place • Park LaBrea • Larchmont Village • Miracle Mile • Los Angeles, local news, Lar...