Today’s coffee…



I was reading this morning about energy drinks versus coffee and it became quickly clear to me that the former are quite dangerous to your health even with moderate consumption habits. Coffee, on the otherhand, has little or no harmful side-effects with moderate consumption.

Nevertheless, too much coffee can be lethal. (Too much consumption of anything can NEVER be good for you!)  What is that lethal dose in coffee? Scientists believe it is 150 mg of caffeine per kilo of body weight.  Essentially, it is 1 cup of coffee per kilo of body weight. With the proviso that ALL of the cups of coffee would have to be ingested at the same time.

For example, if you weigh 70 kilos, then you would need to drink–simultaneously–70 cups of coffee!  Physically, that would be impossible…so the conclusion is that in theory you could overdose from too much coffee, but in practice you would not be able to do so.  You can learn  all about this  and more HERE.  Very instructive!




The last week has seen a few individuals refer to an impending surprise in the upcoming FIDE Congress to be held in September in Baku during the Chess  Olympiad. That surprise being the ‘possible’ impeachment of Kirsan Ilyumzhinov himself! 


But when I tried to find some substance, or indication, of WHY anyone would want to impeach the most popular individual in FIDE’s distinguished (cough, cough) 92 year history, search as I might on the internet chess universe, I came up empty handed. Well, almost empty handed:


There is not even a shred of evidence  to suggest that such an impeachment movement exists except in the imagination of those individuals who first put the rumour in circulation. ran a short blurb that also contained no concrete or credible information to help shed light on the impeachment issue


“Chess-News learnt that Kirsan Ilyumzhinov might face an impeachment procedure during the coming FIDE General Assembly that will take place in Baku in September….According to our information there are negotiations with several candidates. Among them two current FIDE officials and billionaires: Asian chess leader Sheikh Sultan Bin Khalifa Al Nehyan and the President of the Russian chess federation Andrey Filatov.  However there can be more surprises on the way. 

We asked Kirsan Ilyumzhinov to comment on the situation but there is still no reply.”

Nor was there any comment by the Sheik nor Filatov. Infact,not a single person connected to FIDE, elected or not-elected, has confirmed the rumours. Neither Kirsan, nor Makropoulis; neither Sheik Al-Nehyan nor Filatov.  Nor any other responsible FIDE official.

What gives? Perhaps the individuals in question meant to say ‘Coup d’etat’? Because impeachments are NEVER surprises… Impeachments are PROCESSES that evolve SLÕWLY over time. Openly. Transparently. With enormous public participation. The result of widespread and generalized social discontent or outrage. 

There is only one logical conclusion: it is all just a HOAX driven by bitter Kasparov supporters!

unexpected surprise

A definition of REDUNDANCY ?!



“A British soldier (WWI) whose waistcoat doubles as a checkerboard/chessboard.  Time spent away from the front line, and even in the trenches, could be boring, so soldiers tried to alleviate their boredom with games, sports, music, and theatre.”  LINK



More on ‘I say dust’…


Last August I wrote a blog article about a really exceptional short film by the talented New York-based Lebanese/American film director/writer Darine Hotait, called ‘I SAY DUST‘.


The film stars  Hala Alyan and Mounia Akl. ‘I Say Dust’ tells the story of Hal, an Arab-American poet belonging to the Palestinian diaspora in New York City, who meets Moun, a free-spirited chess sales girl. Over a chess game, the two challenge each other’s idea of what is ‘home’.

In the words of Darine herself: “(The film) is basically about identity in diaspora and how you reformulate your idea of your own identity. You become a different person. That’s what the film is about. The two main characters represent the two ends of the spectrum: one was able to break the boundaries of identity and what it means to have a home while the other character is still restricted within those boundaries.”


The film officially aired in September and has since won a number of prestigeous awards at film festivals all around the world. Infact, ‘I say dust’ continues to enter festivals, for example the film will be shown in Los Angeles later this month.


And more recently, and this is disturbing, even though the film was shown in the ultra-conservative Afghanistan, it was banned in recently held film festivals in Lebanon and Egypt, creating considerable controversy in the media.





But more on this later, when I present a photo-gallery of items related to ‘I say dust’ and the film’s  recent banning. 


(You might want to visit Darine’s FACEBOOK page)

What I want to share with the readers is that I received earlier today a very nice email from Darine Hotait where she refers to my August 26 blog entry on her film. In particular, she kindly corrected me about a comment I made about the board not being set up correctly in a publicity photo (but not the film where the board is perfectly set up!)


Most of my readers will by now have noticed how I have this (bad) habit of rarely letting an opportunity pass to comment on whether the board is set up correctly. (There are dozens of examples on the pages of this blog!)

But I am truly GRATEFUL to Darine–a chess player herself– for taking the time to explain why in the above photo the board is not set up correctly:

“I just want to correct one fact. The picture where you show the girls sitting in front of the chess board is from the making of and not from the film. In the film, Moun gives Hal a chess lesson. Before they start playing she turns the board from the position you see in this photo to the correct position you mention…I am not an expert chess player but i’ve played for quite some time to know that one basic thing.”

Darine then provides with a gif to show the board being turned around correcty immediately before the camera started to film:

WOW!  That makes my day!  Thankyou, Darine, for taking the tme to write to me. I am so pleased!!  (And I have corrrected my earlier blog article)


Here are two youtube videos that my readers will no doubt find informative.  The first is Darine being interviewed about her work (the beginning is not english, but most of it is, especially when Darine speaks)  And the second is a wonderful talk that Darine gave last year, explaining many of her thoughts on the world today.



FINALLY, to finish, I want to present a photo collage of recent items about Darine’s film ‘I say dust’, as well as news items about the film’s banning, as well as a few other items related to these subjects.


Brexit: The Day After…


I am no fan of Cameron.  Never was. I always felt he was just another irresponsible yuppie-politician clone like Blair before him. Soon after being elected in 2010 he was in cohorts with the CIA to do away with Kadaffi, which lead to hundreds of thousands of needless deaths. Lybia is still burning today…Cameron then wanted to bomb Syria and do away with Assad, but his own parliament stopped him at the last moment.

Cameron then felt that he could use the referendum tool to impose his will on the British people, betting that he would have the mass-media and infinite government resources at his disposal to create a 1984-inspired climate of  fear and anxiety.  It worked well in the Fauklands, and in Scotland.  But by the time Brexit came around, most people in Britain were tired of his offensive use of fear mongering and directly lying to the people. Even Merkel objected to Cameron’s underhanded tactics.

So now Britain must face the consequences of reality finally catching up to the yuppie-politician. FORTUNATELY, this time it will not be hundreds of thousands of innocents in countries far away who will suffer. This time the British people themselves will pay the consequences of choosing incompetent and scheming leaders.

This time the destruction will really hit home. Every man , woman and child in Britain will suffer. The independence issues of Scotland and Ireland will have be reviewed. As it should be. Cameron was not just elected, but re-elected. Britain will have to be re-built from the bottom up. Perhaps, if there is a lesson to be learned here, it is this: Britain deserves decent leaders, individuals of character and integrity, leaders who will not one day in the near future risk being tried for War Crimes.

But before then, the British people will have to pay the consequences of living in a democracy.  I have little compassion for the Scots who feel that their voice was not heard.  Did they not just hold their own referendum and voted to remain by Britain’s side? Now they don’t like it…I say that they should have known that their own choice has consequences.  You reap what you sow…

But BEST of all, what I like most about the Brexit referendum is the MESSAGE that Britain sends to the unelected leadership in Brussels: FUCK YOU!  Many millions of europeans also feel it is time to dismantle an outdated model that is already anti-democratic and even threatening to become fascist in nature.


Reality check: Will the REAL criminal PLEASE raise his hand?


What kind of fucked-up world are we living in? When Islamic-inspired genocide can quickly become a crazed argument for Islamic-empowerment…then our North American traditions have a REAL problem. (And how sad it is that the REAL victims of Orlando are forgotten).

I have been gradually losing respect for our current politicians’ vision of the world…they seem to have lost track of their responsibilities…maybe the only hope for the future is indeed DONALD TRUMP!


It may either be that or sometime in the next 5 years we might soon have to start bombing our own cities to re-impose the REAL law of the land…


2016 US election: 1984 revisited??


I used the above image in my ChessNews photo-gallery the other day, and this single image got more hits (approximately 25,000 views) than any other item, and that includes competitive images of naked, seductive women!  No doubt this says something about my readers (smart, socially aware?), but the above image is also thought provoking in its own way.

George Orwell’s iconic masterpiece, 1984, is something that is even more relevant today than when it made its initial splash back in 1949…and the 2016 US election campaign is just one example of hundreds of cases that show where, how and why we (the normal guys) are being manipulated and mind-controlled from the time we wake up to the time we go to bed.

I think you might find the next short item worth taking a closer look at…ENJOY!


(click on banner to access full atticle)



Where is the money?


ECU Womens Championship LOGO

(click on logo to open official tournament website)

The European Individual Women’s Chess Championship ended yesterday (this will be covered in the News section here) and as I was taking a look at the photos of the top players going into the final round, as well as the photos of the closing ceremony, I was struck by the long, sad looks on their faces. Could this be because they had only just realized that they will have to wait almost two months before seeing a penny of the 60,000 euro prize fund?

Sem título 1 - 1

But apparently the official regulations had stipulated that the players would have to wait several months before seeing their prizes.  But how many of the participants had actually noticed the relevant sentence way at the end of the official regulations, almost hidden in fine print?

Sem título 1 - 3.png

If we compare with the regulations of the  Men’s European Individual Championship that had just finished last month (which offered more than 100,000 euros in prizes) then you would NOT see anything about any delay in getting their prize money. The prizes were paid immediately. Why should the women be treated differently?  And especially, isn’t this RIDICULOUS?? How could the ECU leadership agree to accept a bid for a prestigious European championship without the necessary financial guarantees, even ACCORDING to its own bidding regulations?

Chess, music, art, news…what else?





With a name like that, how much more do I need to sing her praises? I just recently discovered this artist and I am very impressed! Chess Countess is the alias of Tamsyn Miller, a singer, songwriter and musician, born and raised in Hawkes Bay and now currently based in Auckland, New Zealand. She is renowned for her theatrical stage shows, soaring vocals and uninhibited blend of genres. Miller announced herself as Chess Countess in 2010, competing in the University of Auckland’s Songwriter of the Year competition and reaching the final. Since then she has produced some very successful material…