Brilliant, talented, eccentric, and controversial United States grand master chess champion and king of the sport Bobby Fischer died today at the age of 64. With Bobby’s passing goes a part of my life that I owe to this man and the game that is the “Sport of Kings” with all due respect to horse racing. It was chess and Bobby Fischer’s instructive book “Bobby Fischer Teaches Chess” that taught me lessons about life and helped save my life on one occasion.
My mother bought me the book as a 12 year old 6th grader, first published in 1966, in 1972. The lessons I learned from Bobby can be applied to life; at a time when many of my Realtor and broker friends are having troubles please consider the following:
1. Observe and Analyze: One of the first lessons Bobby taught me was to relax and analyze a situation. Observe your surroundings, circumstances, conditions, and situation. Pay attention!
2. Be Deliberate: Because your first reaction to a situation may be grounded in emotion, this decision could be a mistake. Once you observe and analyze–pause and allow your observations to “sink in” before moving forward.
3. Intuition is Your Friend: After a moment’s pause, analyze your observations. Use your intuition by formulating multiple scenarios/outcomes to the situation at hand.
My Story How Bobby Fischer May Have Saved My Life:
As a 18yr old kid, on a date in a town known for it’s redneck street level justice, in the late 1970’s I was thrust into a situation that could have had grave circumstances for me. Two men cut in front of a line of cars waiting to order at a Jack in the Box restaurant. The offending party then decided to get smart and flip off the angry occupants of the car behind them–a couple of older men who had the distinct look of a couple of newly released ex-cons.
After taunts were exchanged, the two older men left their car, dragged both of the offending men out of there car and began to smack them around. After a few punches, one of the “ex-cons” stabbed the driver in the abdomen 5 times with a hunting knife. Seeing this cutting, the driver’s friend ran away screaming.
My first reaction was to run to the scene to help the man that was stabbed and my girlfriend was yelling at me to “go help him-Dean!” But rather than acting before analyzing–I waited and gave myself a few moments to process. My decision was simply to button up and roll out of the parking lot with my life intact and my girlfriend safe.
Later I found out through a cop, friendly with my girlfriend’s family, that the man that had stabbed the driver was a Hell’s Angel who had skipped bail with nothing to lose.
Thanks Bobby! I hope somebody has your back.