Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Got Myself One Official Mentor - Looking For More Off The Record

While reading Go Discussions I learned about a room on KGS with which I had been unfamiliar.   It is called The Enclave.   I discovered that many people I know hang out it in regularly.  I was pleased to see them there, and I have met some new people as well.   

I found out that they have a mentoring system at The Enclave.   Having mentored someone since January myself, and seeing how it has benefited him to have someone sitting in on so many of his games, I thought that maybe it was a good idea for me to seek out a mentor for myself.    I realize that this might sound odd coming from someone who takes professional lessons.  The person I continue to mentor also takes professional lessons with Yang.  However, two hours of a professional's time on alternate weeks is not the same thing as having a stronger amateur player following you around and taking an interest in your game.   That is what I do for my "mentee".  We rarely play each other but we review a lot.  I don't think there is a good simple word for the one who is being mentored, so I call him my mentee.  Forgive me for making up a word.

I got a mentor through The Enclave who is 1k and who is mostly available evenings.   I don't play much at all in the evening, so I don't expect that my games will be watched much, but we can certainly review the games I play earlier in the day, which is probably a better use of the limited time my mentor may have available to give me than for him to watch me play and review afterward.  That takes twice as much time, if not more.

I also don't think most people are as interested as I am in watching games of players weaker than themselves.   I actually find it fascinating to watch games of players three, four, and five stones weaker than myself to see what I can find in their games that they might not have seen themselves.  I think it is a good way to focus on life and death as those situations often come up in the corners at my level and below.   It is also a good way to look for good end game moves.

My feeling is that the greater the number of  strong players who take an interest in my game the better, so I am hoping to find others to watch me play from time to time.

So let this be an open invitation to players stronger than my own 8k on KGS to look in on my game and to offer some comments afterwards if the spirit moves you.   Having observers makes me want to try harder for "the fans" and helps me to slow down a little.  As much as I detest blitz, I play really fast if I don't check myself.   I tend to play weekdays between 8:00 AM and 10:00 AM on KGS as buzzsaw. I use auto match, so my games won't be in a room, but will appear in the active games list.   My attitude lately is that strangers are for play, and friends are for review.  That seems to be working for me emotionally.

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