Dear Abby: Chess player is a pawn in love–by Abigail VanBuren


Dear Abby:

You have often been asked where a single woman can meet a decent, eligible man.

I have a suggestion: Join a chess club. Women are always welcome. Furthermore, they will find that men outnumber women 10–1. Not bad odds. Also, from 25% to 40% of the men will be unmarried. Men who play chess on a regular basis are usually of good character.

The game requires that the player make individual, intelligent, patient and logical decisions. These attributes carry over into everyday life. For example, I estimate that 95% of steady tournament players do not smoke, and I have never met one who abuses alcohol or drugs. They are almost always employed, are high achievers and have a stable family life.

A woman could counter with, “But I don’t know anything about chess.” Well, that could be to her advantage. What better way to break the ice than to ask a man of her choice to show her the moves?

I realize that not every chess player is necessarily an ideal prospect for marriage, but it’s a good way to meet eligible men.

–Lyle Prosterman, Columbus


Dear Lyle:

It’s a novel idea for a place for women to meet decent men, but the typical chess player (as I perceive him) is not exactly a barrel of laughs. He’s apt to be quiet and pensive, more of an introvert than an extrovert, highly competitive and slow to make decisions, which isn’t all bad.

The moves in chess have often been compared with those made by two opposing generals on a battlefield. A chess game resembles a war in that it consists of attack and defense, whose object is making the king surrender. On second thought, it could be a good training ground for marriage.


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