I think one of the most sickening memes I see around the net is the one of 11 dimensional chess. That the actions of this President are so arcane and inside a game really complicated that few people actually play.
Well it’s not 11 dimensional chess it’s just chess.
I happened to have taught myself to play chess. I learned on the internet chess server, and I’ve played to a consistent level of 1800 and spend months over 2000. So, let me introduce you to a few basic concepts from JUST CHESS from a dude who didn’t even need a lesson to understand it.
CONTROL THE CENTER
The king lives there. You can mess around on the wings if you want, but most likely what’s going to happen if you do that is your opponent is going to smash up your middle and checkmate you. So the first thing you want. The first thing you fight for. The last thing you want to give up is the MIDDLE.
THE KING IS THE GAME
In the middle there is a piece that is the actual focus of the game. You may sacrifice down to just two pieces and if those two pieces checkmate the opponent. You win. Lots of people love to get hung up on this idea. Oh no’s my queen is in danger, oh no’s my rook is gone, let me ever so hard fight to keep those things on the board, oops check mate.
YOU HAVE TO THINK
Now even I have to admit I hate long chess games. My mind wanders, I want things to move, move, move, so I tend to personally play games that have 3 minutes per side per game, and to be honest I prefer a 1 minute game. That’s me being lazy and not wanting to think. Picking targets and places to attack are dynamic in a game, and every move will make you have to reassess the value AND ASSUMPTIONS BEHIND everything on the board. You have to ponder, there can be no snap judgments unless you want to lose, or you have memorized 1000’s of patterns or have some savant like ability to assess. Or you can take the time to THINK before you start making moves.
I suppose what troubles me about the meme is that it assumes what happens is unknowable. It’s not. There is no need to ascend to higher plains to know what’s going on just sit down and think about the game.