The words “It’s a Trap!” have occurred countless times in movies. They happen in chess too, suddenly yelled by your inner voice.

When does the inner voice speak? A common time used to be when you wrote your move down prior to playing it, the act of doing so being a kind of announcement, a phase shift. I say ‘used to be’ because FIDE outlawed the practice of writing down the move first, saying that it was ‘relying on notes’.

There are other times too, when, for example you find a tiny inconsistency, a departure from the usual script. In the movies it might be that there’s something not quite right about a uniform, perhaps that the butler’s shoes are inappropriate or a coat is buttoned the wrong way.

With regards to yesterday the chair noted the unusual rally on the last day of October, strength when usually there was weakness. And then the higher gap open sold off very quickly, not at all like one of those days which start high and then feature a crescendo of buying as the day wears on. Not much to go on but there was a brief chance to escape. In retrospect. And it was a reminder of Tartakover’s saying, “obvious therefore dubious, dubious therefore playable”.





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