Forty something years ago, your webmaster (Peg!) contracted mononucleosis … And my life’s trajectory changed.

Harvey Friedman, friend and world renown mathematician, taught me “honeymoon bridge” while I was stuck at my U of Wisconsin apartment. Once recovered, I “graduated” to our student union and the math department lounge – back in the day when plenty of people learned our great game while in college. And from there, well…  Bridge became my passion and an integral part of my life.

Many of us in 2017 bemoan that far fewer young people are learning our game than in the past. Yet – particularly in Minnesota – various people and schools are doing their best to introduce students to our game!

You know about Honors Dean Matthew Bribitzer-Stull and his efforts, along with other bridge playing professors, to educate a new generation at the U of MN. Now, at Carleton College, student and bridge player Alexander Frieden is working with others to promote bridge and a bridge club at Carleton!

Last Saturday, after an invite I was honored to receive from Alexander, I headed to Northfield to join bridge club participants. For the first hour, I kibitzed and offered commentary as some of the more experienced students – Alexander, Sophia Maymudes, Jackson Wahl, Thomas Scruggs and Changlan Wang – played.

Then, it was my pleasure to address all the bridge club students in attendance. Because I wasn’t certain of their levels of knowledge, Alexander and I had judged it best for me to share thoughts about the game itself, along with stories (fun AND tragic) that happened in Real Life. Along the way, I continually highlighted how bridge is the world’s greatest mind game – and – that the people who enjoy it are equally as wonderful!

After that, I enjoyed playing some hands with students, again offering opinions and advice with each hand. Then, of course, I had to take some photos!

The students were most appreciative that I’d driven down to spend a few hours with them. Truly, though, I was the one filled with gratitude. To see students having fun, playing and discussing hands, laughing and looking quizzical – depending upon the hand and the moment – gave me joy.

A big shout out to Alexander, Matthew – and the many other teachers and players who are helping a new generation of bridge players join our ranks!

Also – huge thanks and recognition to two very special people. First, Patty Tucker, bridge teacher ten star extraordinare and fine player, who sent the Carleton students a number of her study booklets.

Additionally, deep gratitude to TGBH (otherwise know as The Great Bob Hamman). Bob is shipping hand signed copies of his world class bridge book, “At the Table” to Carleton students! If you are going to learn, then why not from the best!?

More photos from my exciting day at Carleton College’s Bridge Club below!