KindredSpirit’s Kaleidoscope: My Journey Among Wisemen and Fools

It is hard to imagine that I have survived to the age I am. My school days were filled with an assortment of ills that found me being sort of home schooled during those afflictions.  My assignments were sent home on the school bus that stopped each school day.  I taught myself through reading both my school books and having an inquisitive spirit making use of the area libraries and the Scrantom store in Rochester on a few visits to the Central YMCA, home of the Rochester Chess Club. All during this time I was also making a study of the game of chess and toying with some ideas I was developing that ran contrary to the laws of chess that I have related in earlier articles.  My brother made me famous by having the Wayne Chess Club members to his home where he insisted I present a talk on chess and demonstrate blindfold play; I played 5-opponents simultaneously and won all the games.  It left me with a headache and I seem to remember coming down rather ill.

George was a farmer and a great basketball and soccer star in highschool. He was my idol.  I was not able to play sports after the 7th or 8th grade due to my frequent illnesses but I attended his games.  So my attention was directed to chess.  I was especially interested in organizational matters and areas that I had developed some rebellion that eventually led to conflicts with the United States Chess Federation (USCF), The Correspondence Chess League of America (CCLA), and the international federation governing correspondence play (ICCF).  My chess play was rather infrequent, probably playing about 300 tournament games. My titles were local, winning the Wayne Club championship and Rochester Club title twice.  I won a master class section in World Cup II preliminary and second in a master class section.  I won a few Leadership CCLA events but not nearly as successful in postal play as was my oldest brother Raymond. Most of my chess life was devoted to organizational matters and as a writer.

I had a banking career at a time when banks were run really well.  I learned a great deal about finance, adding courses through AIB to those I got in the military.

I was proud of my brothers success in their fields; Ray was an accomplished chemist and George a highly respected farmer, winning an award from the Agriculture magazine, appearing on the front cover with a story about his farming. My sister Shirley was an accomplished mom raising four sons, a fine wife, musician, artist and poet. My parents were proud of their children and grandchildren.

Greatness is relative; it is not money earned, position held, or the fame you might achieve.  It is the sum total, whether at the end of our walk through life, youthful dreams led your talents in the direction that the Lord bestowed to his flock.  Each of us has worth; each of us find individually the capacity to love, to follow their star.  I have always believed that one can grow deep roots at home or abroad.  Life is a mystery. And were it otherwise, the Lord would guide us to truth and understanding if you seek him.

Life can be worth living or it can be a hell.  God has presented sin to us as a folly. Through the love of Jesus Christ we can reverse it; we can make all things new. Have faith, for the Holy Word of the Bible tells me so.

God bless all!  Amen.

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