Our Diplomacy league is the most active in North America. We average more than two league games per month in addition to Tournament play. We score all of our games using the Sum of Squares scoring system, and each player's best three scores count toward the season standings. We are known for our fierce competition, strong traditions, upstanding character and trustworthiness, and the propensity for Turkey to open to Armenia.
Times Turkey Opened to Armenia
February was the new Oktober last night at the Red Lion in Lincoln Square...for the German players, anyway. On both boards, they played like the evening was a festival and the other players' supply centers, beer.
We had fifteen show up for our monthly Red Wednesday event at the Red Lion (second Wednesday of every month. Plan to join us on March 8 and April 12!), including two who were specifically there to play only if needed. Chris Kelly won the coin toss to sit out, and games 329 and 330 started about 20 minutes apart. (Footnote: We had enough players to start Game No. 329 by 6:20, but since a couple of them were new, we delayed the start to give them a thorough introduction to Diplomacy.)
Game No. 329
This one started first and included a brand-new player, another playing for the first time since September 2015 and only the second time ever, as well as some grizzled vets from the earliest days of the club. It ended by time limit after the Fall 1906 turn in the following center counts:
The CODCon Open, the event that put tournament Diplomacy back on Chicago's map, returns for an 11th installment, April 8-9 at the College of DuPage in west suburban Glen Ellyn. Join us as we renew this fun annual tradition.
For the second time in club history and first since July 2015, the Weasels fielded boards in two locations on the same day. The games took place yesterday on the New East Side and in Avondale.
Originally scheduled for Brian Shelden's condo on the swanky New East Side, Game No. 327 relocated to the bar Seven in his building due to construction in his unit. Readers will recall that Seven is the karaoke bar where we went after the welcome party for last summer's World Diplomacy Championship. Turns out it works pretty well for Dip, too.
The game ended by draw vote in Spring 1908. The final center counts were:
A gray sky surrounds the grayer plains… or is it snow? There is nothing around except a few bare trees, no one to talk to, no place for respite. It is cold, damn cold. There is no more Ritz to be Putin on. You inhale, reeking of friends lost and hopelessness, but the only showers here are (allegedly) used to blackmail other, more important players.
Do you have what it takes to survive the winter? This, weasels, is where we share our Wisdom.
THE WISE OLD WEASEL—RUSSIA
“Why does this club hate Russia?” ponders club founder and Soviet sweetheart Jim O’Kelly. Verily, Russia is the most difficult country to play in this club, as it is the least likely to top or split a top.
Perhaps it is because of this club’s proclivity to the Sundstrom/ Armenia opening. Perhaps it is because Germany tends to bounce Sweden. Perhaps it is because two units are often bounced in S01. Perhaps it is the lack of guaranteed builds. Perhaps it is because Russia always happens to look big. Perhaps it is because Germany is too eager to move east. Perhaps it is because it neighbors nearly every nation and has the most number of “strategically imperative” diplomatic conversations early in the game. Perhaps Weasels are just fulfilling their patriotic duty.
Much like matryoshka doll, each Russian problem just opens up into another Russian problem. Playing Russia can be a real bear.
YOUR RUSSIAN INSPIRATION
I debated putting the "Miracle on Ice" here, but found this more appropriate. For context, you are the bear.
Quit Stalin and drop by the comments to leave your motherland musings.
Hit the JUMP for Russia stats, correlations, and the part where Jake posts links he knows are broken and reminds himself to correct them later.
Nick Rohn, the Alpha Weasel beta and veteran of the club's second game back in November 2005, finally strolled into the Red Lion at about 7:15 last night, the heavy rain having doubled the duration of his commute from Parts Unknown. And still, the evening's second board didn't start.
Nick brushed the water off his jacket and sat down to join our wait for Kelsey Trotta. Jake and Ian's older sister had gone to the wrong Red Lion and was still en route.
Jake, meanwhile, anxiously vacillated between our table, where he feverishly worked his phone for status updates from his sister, and the Lion's back room to watch Game No. 325, which had started on time at 6:30. He was in the back room when a woman walked in at around 7:45, did the about face at the bar, and approached our table cautiously.
"Are you Kelsey?" I asked.
"No," she retorted. "I'm the Easter Bunny."
The 11th edition of the Windy City Weasels' signature tournament, the Weasel Moot, will take place June 23-25.
Where to go
Weasel Moot XI will be held at the Diversey River Bowl, located at 2211 W. Diversey Ave. (map), in the West Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago. We'll have the bar/restaurant to ourselves all weekend.
How to get there
For those driving, the River Bowl is just off the Diversey exit on I-90/94 and has a free parking lot. For those taking public transport, the 76 bus runs directly from the Diversey brown line stop. For those sailing, the alley is right on the north branch of the Chicago River. For those flying, there is a helipad on the roof.