American Go E-Journal

Go Spotting: The Taste Of Tea

Monday February 8, 2010

Go figures prominently in Katsuhito Ishii’s 2004 film, The Taste of Tea (Cha no Aji). “Although go is not the only focus of the film, it is one of its essential ingredients and appears more often than in other films like Pi and A Beautiful Mind,” reports Pete Schumer. “It’s worth checking out!” According to Wikipedia, “The film is concerned with the lives of the Haruno family, who live in rural Tochigi prefecture, the countryside north of Tokyo. Nobuo is a hypnotherapist who teaches his son, Hajime, to play go. Hajime becomes an excellent go player, but he has a rough time with girls and puberty. Nobuo’s wife, Yoshiko refuses to be an average housewife, and works on animated film projects at home. She uses assistance from Grandfather Akira, an eccentric old man who is a former animator and occasional model. Uncle Ayano, a sound engineer and record producer, moves in with the family. He is looking to restart his life again after living in Tokyo for several years. Meanwhile, Yoshiko’s daughter Sachiko, believes that she is followed around everywhere by a giant version of herself, and searches for ways to rid herself of it.” “Katsuhito also directed the film Promises of August (1995) and Shark Skin Man and Peach Hip Girl (1999) as well as providing some animation in Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill vol. I,” adds Schumer.

Categories: Go Spotting

U.S. GO NEWS: Feng Yun/Jie Li Win North American Pair Go 1st Round; USYGC Season Opens; Kirby Sweeps N. California Tourney; SmartGo In S. Korea And Coming Soon To Ipad.

Monday February 8, 2010

FENG YUN/JIE LI WIN N.A. PAIR GO 1ST ROUND: Feng Yun and Jie Li defeated Wan Chen and Curtis Tang Sunday night in the first round of the North American World Pair Go Qualifier, played on IGS. “One pair withdrew at the last moment, and one member of another pair did not show up, so two games were not played,” reports Allan Abramson. Feng Yun and Jie Li will have a bye for the second round, and play the final game on Thursday night. Jing Yang and Jin Yu will play White vs Yuan Zhou and Yinli Wang on Tuesday night – also on IGS, in Round Two.

USYGC SEASON OPENS:  The 2010 United States Youth Go Championship is kicking into gear, with qualifiers now scheduled across the country.  First up is the Orange County Go Club, in Los Angeles, on Feb. 21-22.  New Qualifier locations have been added as well, with Boston, New Jersey, Colorado, and San Francisco all hosting events.  There will also be an online qualifier, hosted by the AGHS <>.  This year, the AGA is also adding National Single Digit Kyu (SDK) and Double Digit Kyu (DDK) championships to the event.  The winners will receive trophies, and prizes will be awarded in the following brackets: 1-4 kyu, 5-9 kyu, 10-15 kyu, 16-20 kyu, 21-25 kyu, 26 and up kyu.  In the dan brackets, the strongest kids in the country will be competing for the right to represent the US at the World Youth Go Championships this summer.  Low dan youth will have a chance at prizes and trophies too, with prizes for 1-5 dan as well.  The event is sponsored by the AGA and the AGF, and Guo Juan has donated audio go lessons <> as bonus prizes for youth in all categories.  For more information, visit the tournament webpage <>
-Paul Barchilon; photo: young players study at the 2009 U.S. Go Congress; photo by Chris Garlock

KIRBY SWEEPS NORCAL TOURNEY: Brian Kirby topped February’s monthly ratings tournament in Northern California, February 6 in Menlo Park, CA. There were 25 players, ranging from 25 kyu to 7 dan, and two played in their first tournament ever. The next monthly ratings tournament will be March 6 in Palo Alto, CA. Winners report: Four game winner: Brian Kirby 2k 4-0. Three game winners: Lucas Baker 2d 3-1, Samuel Gross 1d 3-0, Roger Schrag 7k 3-0, Larry Qu 15k 3-1.
– Roger Schrag

SMARTGO IN SOUTH KOREA AND COMING SOON TO IPAD: SmartGo Pro for the iPhone/iPod touch is now available in South Korea under the name “Smartgo Pro Baduk,” reports SmartGo author Anders Kierulf. “It comes with over 15,000 professional games and 2,000 problems.” Search for Baduk in the iTunes App Store. Kierulf also tells the EJ that “I’m working on a version of SmartGo optimized for Apple’s upcoming iPad.”

WORLD GO NEWS: Rui Naiwei Retains Female Myeongin Title, Again; Cho U 3-0 In Kisei; Japan Knocked Out Of BC Cup; Korea Takes Women’s Team Match Cup; Iyama Yuta Holds Lead In Honinbo League; Youngest-Ever Pro Is Female.

Monday February 8, 2010

RUI NAIWEI RETAINS FEMALE MYEONGIN TITLE, AGAIN: Rui Naiwei 9P defeated Cho Hyeyeon 8P by resignation in the third and final round of the 11th Female Myeongin (Meijin) on February 8. Rui and Cho Hyeyeon have faced each other for the Female Myeongin title three years in a row now, and Rui has come out ahead each time. She has held this title for six straight years and won 9 out of the 11 Myeongin title matches.
– Go News, GoGameWorld, Sensei’s Library, JustPlayGo

CHO U 3-0 IN KISEI: Cho U 9P defeated Yamashita Keigo  by a whopping 8.5 points in the third round of the 34th Kisei title match on February 3-4. Cho U leads the series 3-0. This is the first time Cho has played in the Kisei title match and the Kisei is the only one of the top seven Japanese titles he has never held. Yamashita has held this title five of the last seven years, including the last four in a row. The fourth round in the best-of-seven match will be played on February 18-19.
–  Go News, GoGameWorld, Sensei’s Library, JustPlayGo

JAPAN KNOCKED OUT OF BC CUP: Japan’s Iyama Yuta and Yamada Kimio were both eliminated in the second round of the BC Card Cup, ending any hopes of Japan entering into the finals. China’s Niu Yutian 7P defeated Iyama Yuta 9P by resignation and Korea’s Yoo Changhyuk 9P defeated Yamada Kimio 9P by resignation as well.
Game Record (Niu Yutian vs. Iyama Yuta B+R)
Game Record (Yoo Changhyuk vs. Yamada Kimio B+R)
– JustPlayGo

KOREA TAKES WOMEN’S TEAM MATCH CUP: Korea’s Park Jieun 9P swept the 3rd stage of the Jeongganjang Cup, winning all four rounds and giving Korea their win on February 4. Park Jieun defeated China’s Li He 2P by resignation in the final round. Korea has now won five of the eight Jeongganjang Cup titles. The Jeongganjang Cup is a win-and-continue tournament between five member women teams from China, Japan, and Korea. Last year the Chinese won for the third time, and it looked like they would repeat this year when the third stage started with one Japanese representative, one Korean, and three Chinese. However, the Korean rep was Park Jieun 9P and she won four games in a row to give Korea its fifth win of this Cup. The Japanese won one game this year (Mukai Chiaki 3P beat Kim Hyeoimin 5P of Korea), which was better than last year and allowed them to at least appear in the third round.
– Go News, GoGameWorld, Sensei’s Library, JustPlayGo

IYAMA YUTA HOLDS LEAD IN HONINBO LEAGUE: Iyama Yuta 9P, current Meijin, holds the lead in the Honinbo League with a 4-0 record. The challenger for the Japanese Honinbo title is determined by an eight-player round robin league, which is about half over at this point. Everyone else has lost at least one game. In second place are Takao Shinji 9P and Yamashita Keigo 9P, both at 3-1. Iyama’s next game is against Yamashita on February 11th.
– Go News, GoGameWorld, Sensei’s Library, JustPlayGo

YOUNGEST-EVER PRO IS FEMALE: The youngest ever pro 1-dan is about to emerge in Japan and she is female. On April 1, Fujisawa Rina will be inducted at the age of 11 years 6 months, three months younger than Cho Chikun when he became 1-dan, and far ahead of Xie Yimin who was the previous youngest female 1-dan at 14 years 4 months. Rina is the daughter of Fujisawa Kazunari 8-dan, and thus the granddaughter of Fujisawa Hideyuki. She says her style is quite different from grandad’s, she likes territory and he liked thickness. Her teacher was Hong Mal-keun Saem, a Korean long time resident in Japan who himself qualified as a pro just last year. Rina qualified in the women’s section of the Nihon Ki-in’s qualification system, which is not quite as tough as the open section, but women in the Nihon Ki-in have been posting some good results lately; Mukai Chiaki beat Kudo Norio 9-dan in the Oza a fortnight ago.
– John Fairbairn, on

Categories: Go News,World

EUROPEAN GO NEWS: Dinerchtein To Fujitsu Finals; Törmänen Takes Takapotku; Metta Celebrates Tenth Tortellino; Anguila Sweeps Spanish Title; Danigabi Takes Early Lead In KGS League; Top Players Flock To Amsterdam.

Monday February 8, 2010

DINERCHTEIN TO FUJITSU FINALS: Alexander Dinerchtein 3P will represent Europe at this year’s Fujitsu World Go Championship. Dinerchtein won a 4-player online knock-out tourney held on KGS at the end of January, first defeating Christian Pop 7d of Romania and then, in the finals, Csaba Mero 6d of Hungary. Mero had eliminated Catalin Taranu 5P; click here  for the game. The Fujitsu will be held in Japan in April.

TÖRMÄNEN TAKES TAKAPOTKU:  Antti Törmänen 5d from Oulu took the Takapotku tournament, sweeping the Pandanet event 5-0 in Helsinki, Finland last weekend. Viktor Lin 5d from Vienna only loss was to Törmänen, while Janne Määttä 4d took home bronze, also to Oulu. Surprisingly, Su Yang 6d (Jeff Chang 9d on KGS) won only three games to finish fifth. Lone Estonian Alo Jöekalda 1k from Tallinn won three games as well. Click here for results

METTA CELEBRATES TENTH TORTELLINO: Carlo Metta 1d from Pisa won all five rounds of the Tortellino Tournament in Vignola (Modena province), Italy to celebrate the first decennium of Tortellina Go Club.  Paolo Montrasio 1k (Milano) was second, while Mirco Fanti 2k (Bologna) took bronze. In 28-player field, only local Modena player Jacopo Silingardi 15k also won all his games. Click here for results and here for a gallery of photos
– Peter Dijkema

ANGUILA SWEEPS SPANISH TITLE: Oscar Anguila 3d swept the tournament for the  ‘Campeón de Espana’ title in mid-January in Barcelona. Anguila was undefeated in a mostly 3-dans. Antonio Egea won silver and Ignacio Cernuda took bronze.
The final was played over five rounds with eight players. For the table, click here
– Peter Dijkema and Krzysztof Bozek

DANIGABI TAKES EARLY LEAD IN KGS LEAGUE: Danigabi from Argentina sprinted to an early lead in the top-division in the first week of the second Korean Insei League on KGS. Danigabi notched three wins against second-place Arlequ1 from France and leads 9-0. January’s A League winner Artem92 is tied with ha – also of France – in third place. Click here for latest results

TOP PLAYERS FLOCK TO AMSTERDAM: Top-ranked players are heading to the 39th annual Amsterdam International Go Tournament , set for May 13–16. Early entrants include current French Champion Yanqi Zhang 6d, former Dutch Champion Merlijn Kuin 6d, current co-winner of the Dutch finals Peter Brouwer 5d and former Amsterdam Open winner – and first Senior Champion of Holland — Robert Rehm 5d.
– Peter Dijkema

Categories: Europe,Go News

AGA Board Waives U.S. Youth Go Championship Requirement

Monday February 1, 2010

The AGA Board acted Sunday to waive the 10-game minimum requirement for the annual U.S. Youth Go Championship, converting last year’s one-time exemption into a permanent exemption for this tournament, which leads to the selection of the U.S. representative to the World Youth tournament. Board Chairman Roy Schmidt noted that “This responds to concerns of youth advocates that the AGA should be encouraging maximum participation in this tournament, with reduced requirements.”

Matthews To Retire As AGA Ratings Coordinator

Monday February 1, 2010

“Our ratings coordinator, Paul Matthews, has informed me of his decision to retire from this position to spend more time pursuing other go related interests,” reports AGA President Allan Abramson. “Paul has been one of our AGA heroes,” Abramson told the E-Journal, “having developed the rating system algorithms 20 years ago, and having maintained ratings with regular updates for all this time.” Adding that “I personally hold him in the highest regard, and respect the care he devoted to the quality of ratings.” Abramson also had a request for AGA members, asking them to “Please join me in extending our thanks to Paul for 20 years of extraordinary service.” Abramson also noted that “We are now in the process of integrating new open source rating system programming with our other data systems and web site. This transition may take several months to complete, but in the interim we expect to do a ratings update as soon as possible. I ask for your understanding and patience.”

Categories: U.S./North America

World Pair Go Registration Deadline Extended

Monday February 1, 2010

The registration deadline for the World Pair Go Tournament has been extended to this Thursday at  midnight. Recognizing the World Pair Go Tournament as a special one-time celebration of the 20th anniversary of the creation of Pair Go, the AGA Board Sunday night voted to waive both the one-year continuous membership requirement and the 10-game minimum requirement for the qualification tournament, as it had waived some requirements for the World Mind Sports Games last year under similar circumstances. U.S. citizenship and U.S. residency for at least six of the past twelve months still are required. Interested pros and amateurs must contact with names and AGA ID’s by the deadline

Gu Li Winningest Pro In ’09

Monday February 1, 2010

An important indication of superiority among go professionals is their winning percentage, especially among the most active players. Here is a rundown for 2009. Gu Li 9P of China was the player with the most wins in international events, winning eighteen and losing seven for a winning rate of 72%. Second in number of wins was fellow Chinese Qiu Jun 9P with 17-8 for a 68% rate. Third was Heo Yeongho 6P of Korea whose 16-4 record gave him an amazing 80% win rate. Not surprisingly, the top twenty international event winners are all either Chinese (9) or Korean (12): nine Chinese and twelve Koreans (a six-way tie for 16th makes the total twenty-one).

In 2008, Gu Li was third behind Lee Sedol 9P and Lee Changho 9P of Korea, but Gu’s winning percentage was higher: 82% vs. 75% and 74%.

In Japan in 2009 Iyama Yuta 9P was dominant, not only winning the most games (43-14) but also having the highest winning percentage among the top winners: 75%.

Yuki Satoshi 9P was second in wins, 40-15.

Top title holder Cho U 9P fell to fifth place, winning 35 while losing 19 for a 65% rate. Cho was the top winner in 2008 in Japan.

In Korea, Kim Jisuk 6P, who turned twenty during 2009, was the top winner at 71-20 for a 78% rate. His 78% winning percentage was also top among the thirty players with the most wins.

Choi Cheolhan 9p was second on the winning list with 56-18 for a 76% rate, and Lee Changho 9P was third with 50 wins and a 66% rate.

Lee Changho was second in 2008 behind Lee Sedol 9P (who is currently not playing in professional events).

Kong Jie 9P is the top winner for 2009 in China: 47-20 for a 70% rate.

Only one player among the top thirty winners in China has a higher rate: Tan Xiao 5P in fifteenth place with a 74% rate for 33-12.

The precocious teen Chen Yaoye 9P – who turned twenty at the end of 2009 — was second in China with 46-20, which also gives him a 70% win rate.
– Bill Cobb

Categories: Go News,World

EUROPEAN GO NEWS: Groenen & Brouwer Tie In Dutch Champs; Groenen Denies Pomstra Bid For 5th Win At Heerlen Open; Pocsai-Palogh Corner Market On Hungarian Title Gold; Kachanovskij Wins First KGS Insei League; Kachanovskiy, Simara, Prokopova To Student Oza; Grabowski Steps Down As Polish Ratings Master

Monday February 1, 2010

GROENEN & BROUWER TIE IN DUTCH CHAMPS: Geert Groenen 6d and Peter Brouwer 5d tied for the Dutch title after the final rounds of the Championship, which were played last weekend at the European Go Center near Amsterdam. The winner will be decided in a best-of-three play-off in the Spring. Last year Groenen lost the play-off, while Brouwer took bronze on his first try for the title. EuroGoTV plans to publish a collection of the Dutch Championship games with commentary by Guo Juan 5P. Four other players shared third place while four more kept their seats in the finals for next year. “I am both proud and happy,” said event co-organizer Herman Hiddema, “I kept my place for next year in my first appearance in the finals.” The Women’s and Youth Championships were also held last weekend and for the fourth year in a row Anne van Leeuwen 1k swept 5-0, besting a 12-player field. This year top-youth Alexander Eerbeek 3d had qualified for the main final, where he won three of his eight games; all his losses were to top-rated players. Yuki de Groot won the kid’s title. The side event was won by Rudi Verhagen 5d, who usually is in the main tournament and was the first reserve player this year. Click here for results in the main and the women’s.
– Peter Dijkema






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GROENEN DENIES POMSTRA BID FOR 5TH WIN AT HEERLEN OPEN: Geert Groenen denied Willem-Koen Pomstra’s bid for a fifth win at the Heerlen Open January 9-10 in Holland. Groenen topped the 20th Open, the traditional opener of the new year, winning the deciding match with Willem-Koen Pomstra, who had won the last four. By tradition, the tournament is held in an old bar, which serves a wide variety of beers in the old center of town. 32 participants from 6 countries attended.

POCSAI-PALOGH CORNER MARKET ON HUNGARIAN TITLE GOLD: Dynamic duo Rita Pocsai 4d and Pál Balogh 6d have added the Hungarian Pair Go title to their collection of titles, winning in Budapest on January 30. Pocsai is the Hungarian Women’s Champion and Balogh is the Hungarian Men’s Champion. The pair seem set to bid for a place on the podium in the next Euro-Championships to challenge the rule of Russians. The Youth and Kid’s titles were at stake at the same event and “Despite very bad snow, still nine showed up” Peter Korossy told the E-Journal. Domonkos Albrecht kept his Hungarian Youth title and Róbert Czismadia – who took 4th at last year’s European Championships (EC) — retained his Children’s title. Both will play in the next EC in Romania in March. Click here for results in the Youth and Children’s tourneys In the Hungarian league, held a day earlier in Budapest, both leaders won in the penultimate 6th round. Teams of three play handicap mini-matches of three games each. Origo easily won 8-1, but MGE1 had a hard match, with double-digit Agro which was third: 5-4. Even on match-points, Origo now leads MGE1 by a win and a jigo, but they face tough Agro, while MGE1 meet Sanrensei. The last round will be played in the next fortnight; click here for complete league results full league table.
– Peter Dijkema, based on reports by Peter Korossy

KACHANOVSKIJ WINS FIRST KGS INSEI LEAGUE: Artem Kachanovskiy (Artem92), a young – barely 17 — player from the Ukraine, won the A-division of the first Insei competition on KGS (KILL), run by Alex Dinerchtein, which ended January 31.  Kachanovskiy defeated early leader ‘j13’ (Finland) 4-0 and was best as well against both teachers: 3-5. His over-all 10-5 (67%) beat j13’s 19-11 (63%), while ‘danigabi’ (Argentina) was 3rd with 9-7 (56%). From France ‘ha’ had entered with the weakest KGS ranking, but he was the first to defeat both trainers and finished fourth. As expected, the teachers did best: Dinerchtein 21-2 and Ilya Shiksin 22-5, despite playing simuls with four or five players at a time. Losses to teachers will no longer count for the winning percentage in the new League, which begins this month. The KILL B-league was won by ‘snowbars’ (Russia) 14-6, despite his 1-3 to ‘feature’ (Germany) 11-5, while “Monestri’ (US) was third with 6-3. Other US-players ‘burrito’ and ‘clossius’ incurred many losses to the teachers, who had perfect scores. ‘lemurov’ (RU) swept the C-league 10-0, ahead of ‘silentfear’ from France and ‘Sinprejic’ (US). US ‘BANKER’ was on even with his concurrence 12-12 but lost 5 to the trainers. ‘Grimalkin’ won only a few games. Despite a loss to US ‘will122166’ 11-10, ‘benwahwah’ won the D league 8-5, and ‘Protronics’ (Norway) won E league, with only a loss less then ímagine’ from Turkey, who scored 13-11, while ‘skyboytkd9’ was 3rd with 4-4. For next month, Dinerchtein also announced the new KIEL, the Entrance League to select for E-division. KIEL costs less, but comes with less lessons. A bonus round after the league caused a sensation when the most active players from each league were invited to a simul against Cho Mikyung 1P. Only ‘j13’ won. Watch the game here.
– Peter Dijkema

KACHANOVSKIY, SIMARA, PROKOPOVA TO STUDENT OZA: Artem Kachanowskiy 6d (Ukraine), Jan Simara 5d and Anna Prokopova 1k (both Czech) qualified for the World Student Oza in Japan, later this year. The qualifiers were held for the first time on KGS.

GRABOWSKI STEPS DOWN AS POLISH RATINGS MASTER: After more than 30 years running the Polish rating list, aka ‘Grabolka’, Krzysztof Grabowski resigned on January 1, although he has retained his place at the EGF rating commission. In addition to three decades of running Polish ratings, Grabowski says he proudest of a Kansai Kiin 3-dan diploma signed by their top three 9-dan professionals, Hashimoto Utaru, Shoji and Sekiyama Toshio in 1990. “Perhaps my greatest joy were the Pair Go tourneys during several Polish summer camps.” Grabowski was named the third honorary member of the Polish Go Association, after Tozawa Akinobu 9p and Janusz Kraszek 6d.
–  Peter Dijkema

Categories: Europe,Go News


Monday January 25, 2010

“I am 14 years into a 25 year sentence, and I am interested in starting a go club at the prison,” read the letter from K, forwarded to me at the American Go Foundation by Mark Rubenstein at AGA Member Services. Although our main work at the AGF focuses on children, we also offer full support for institutional settings as well. I sent K an information packet and an application for a class room starter set. Noticing the prison was here in Colorado, I also told him I would be willing to do a demonstration at the prison. Rubenstein also donated two playing sets, and a number of go magazines, but the package was refused by the prison, which had very specific guidelines about what they would accept. As K had mentioned wanting to start a program at the prison, I thought I might try contacting the education coordinator at the prison directly. So began the first of what would ultimately be six months worth of phone calls, letters, and requests to the Federal Correctional Institute in Englewood. I had given up on any chance of a program starting at the prison when I finally received a phone call from one of the education coordinators. He said he had a group of over 20 prisoners who kept asking him when the go teacher was going to come, so he finally decided to let me do a demonstration at the prison. I was also able to arrange for the prison to accept multiple playing sets for the program, and I was finally able to hand-deliver Rubenstein’s package of equipment and magazines as well.

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I finally went to the prison. I had briefly worked with youth in a juvenile correctional facility a few years back, but Englewood is an adult prison, and a federal one at that. When I arrived, I was surprised at the size of the place. A guard told me they house 1,000 inmates there. I passed through multiple security screening points, with giant sliding metal grates, and went deep into the heart of the complex, where I was taken to an educational center in the prison and had a few minutes to set up before the 22 prisoners who had signed up for the program arrived. I finally met K in person, who thanked me profusely for arranging the demonstration. He and the other inmates were all polite, friendly, and very attentive. Three of the prisoners knew how to play already, and I was very pleased to see that they had a few volumes of Janice Kim’s Learn to Play series. None of them had ever played a game outside of the prison system though. The other 19 inmates were all first-timers, so I taught them how to play and then had them all play each other on 9×9 boards. I think the Education Coordinator was pleased to see all of the inmates immediately engaged in the game, and laughing as they discovered new things. After they had all played a game or two, I offered to do a simul with any five of them. They were quite excited by this, and everyone else gathered around the table where I was playing. I gave most of them a five stone handicap on the 9×9, and tried to show them some things while we were playing.

One of the men, T, had been playing for many years. He told me he had learned from a Japanese prisoner, at another prison. He had tried to show the others how to play, but hadn’t had too much luck. I played him even on the 9×9, and the other inmates all took immense pleasure in finally seeing T lose a game. After the first simul, I did a second one. This time I played both K and T on the 19×19 with a 9 stone handicap, and three newcomers on the 9×9 boards. Knowing that I wouldn’t be able to come back often (or perhaps at all) I wanted very much to see if we could establish a rank for either of them. K thought he might be 17 kyu, T had no idea, but they both knew he was much stronger. T played a good game, and to our mutual delight, was able to force me to resign. Since he was within 9 stones of my rank of 1 kyu, I told him I thought he was about 9 kyu. I explained that each handicap stone was worth roughly ten points, and that from here on out he should try to give handicaps accordingly to the other inmates. If he won a game by 50 points, he should give five stones, and so forth. Hopefully the other players will be able to base their ranks off of his. My experience with many clubs has been that two things are critical for success: first, a group of beginners who are all learning together, and second, a handicap system that allows everyone to play fair games.

At the end of my three hours with the inmates, T surprised me by asking if it was possible to make a donation to the AGF. I told him we were funded entirely by donations, and would welcome one if he had the ability to give. I wasn’t expecting the prisoners to have any money, but one of the guards explained that the inmates work in the prison, and receive wages for it. I don’t know what crimes any of these men had committed, but I do know that a person doesn’t stop living once they are behind bars. I can think of no group that might better benefit from the qualities that go brings to our lives than prisoners. Perhaps learning how to play go will give them a non-violent forum to express themselves in, and they will be able to better themselves by learning how to communicate in this way. I also know that whatever a man’s crime, he should be able to play go if he wants to. They have chess and Scrabble in prison, they should have go too.
– Paul Barchilon is Vice President of the AGF; graphic by Mike Samuel

Categories: Traveling Go Board