Finding Bobby Fischer

bobby.JPEGBobby Fischer died yesterday in Iceland.

From the BBC:

The US-born player, who became famous for beating Cold War Soviet rival Boris Spassky in 1972, died of an unspecified illness, his spokesman said.

He was granted Icelandic citizenship in 2005 as a way to avoid being deported to the US.

Mr Fischer was wanted for breaking international sanctions by playing a match in the former Yugoslavia in 1992.

He also had alienated many in his homeland by broadcasting anti-Semitic diatribes and expressing support for the 11 September 2001 attacks in New York.

Honestly, all that comes to mind when I think about Bobby Fischer is the movie Searching for Bobby Fischer and this kid Matthew Michael that I remember from Morris Junior High in McAllen, TX.

searching for bobbyRegarding the former, I have to say that I am surprised by how many notable actors are in this film: Joan Allen, Ben Kingsley, Laurence Fishburne, William H. Macy, Laura Linney, and (of course) Joe Mantegna. Not bad. Not bad at all. That’s a good legacy for Bobby Fischer. Although, if I remember correctly, Bobby Fischer was only an idea in the movie. But he’s in the title. And the slug is great: “Every journey begins with a single move.”

How many movies have slugs that begin with “Every journey”?

Well, for the real Bobby Fischer the journey may have begun “with a single move” but it ended in Iceland. (which I have heard is not as cold as Greenland).

Regarding the latter, Michael Matthew, er, Matthew Michael, was this kid who walked around the halls of good ole Morris with a chess board under his arm. He taught me chess. His opening gambit was good. And we worked on a solar powered remote control car for our science class. We didn’t succeed as well as we could have, but I remember that project fondly. I like to think that he’s a genius somehwere in some Acadamic institution solving the world’s problems. Maybe making solar powered not-remote controlled cars. So here’s to Matthew Michael, wherever he is.

And here’s to Bobby Fischer, boring boring guy.

In another interview Mr Fischer accused the media of trying to “poison the public against me”.

“They constantly use the words eccentric, eccentric, eccentric, weird. I am boring. I am boring!” he said.