Announcements


Tuesday 630pm is Now Online During the period when we are unable to play in person, we will instead be playing on Bridge Base Online. Log in 5-10 minutes before the game, then under "competitive", click "free tournaments" and find "Pairs Hart House Online 6212" or similar. If you don't have a partner, there is a partnership desk, robots for hire, or become a sub. Your BBO username must be on our list in order to play in this tournament; email us to add it. The games do not currently award Masterpoints, but they will be input into ACBLScore to show the Masterpoints you would have won. Top player from these notional Masterpoints wins the Hart House Online CoronaBowl of 2020. All players bidding and making a Grand Slam will be added to the Grand Slam Club and be posted on this website.


ALL GAMES SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE Due to the worldwide Coronovirus pandemic, the Hart House Bridge Club’s weekly games and teaching sessions are suspended until further notice. For those who bought memberships, we are working on a partial reimbursement or credit scheme for you, and will get back to you in a while. Player age plus player and board circulation mean in-person Bridge games are an especially poor idea when a pandemic looms. We want to protect our players, their families, and do our part to protect the wider community. In the meantime, please consider joining us online. We plan to have weekly games on BBO (Bridge Base Online) for everyone to play, at no cost. Watch this space for further announcements. We WILL return.


First Play Free has been discontinued due to space limitations. Players new to the club should pay at the front desk, and talk to Director to get registered in the Bridgemates.


Refreshments have been discontinued Feel free to bring your own coffee and snacks.


Keep Noise Level Down (Law 90). When you finish play and others are still playing, you must not make noise that will disturb other tables. This includes when you have finished the session. Failure to do so will attract first a warning and then increasing procedual penalties. Please silence your cell phones; a ringing phone will be attract a noise pentalty.


Do Not SNAP your cards (Law 74A2). This is annoying to others and a violation of correct procedure. Other scofflaws are:
1. Card-tossers (they throw 'em on the table, and the cards go flying ever so often)
2. Card-flippers (they play a card and immediately turn it without anyone having seen it)
3. Card-hiders (the extra physical hand/elbow blocks your view of the card they've played).


Opponents do not touch Dummy's cards. If Dummy must step away unavoidably, declarer must play Dummy's cards. (Law 7B).


Do not detach a card until it is your turn to play. Law 74B(3).


Power Ratings: The club now participates in the Power Ratings system. Read more here. Check your rating here.


Free Lessons: Tony Wong, one of our top players, has kindly offered to start giving free lessons to new and intermediate players. Please contact him at tonywong@myself.com for further details.


New Awards This Year: In addition to the top 10 Masterpoint Winners and Top 3 'C' Masterpoint Winners, we will also have awards for Top Percentage, Top Masterpoints Per Session Attended, Attendance Award, Most Improved Player, and Most Sportsmanlike Player.


Board Discussions: Results section can now have some discussion about interesting hands. Please submit your questions/comments/analyses and help everyone learn.


Convention Cards: By ACBL Regulation and Club Policy, all pairs must have 2 identical completed convention cards. A 1/4 board penalty may be given for failure to comply, and the pair may be required to play the ACBL "Fat Free" card until one is completed. For historical reasons, the Director will not be going around checking, but if there is a Director call is hampered by lack of convention cards, the penalty will apply. Stronger pairs will be more likely to have this policy enforced. Pairs can choose to post their convention cards on the website. This helps generate discussion and learning about various methods, and if you forget your cards, the Director can print them for you!


Psychic Bid Policy: A psychic bid is one that deliberately and grossly misstates either honor strength or suit length (i.e. more than one card off in length, or more than a Queen or King off in honor strength). Psyches are an integral part of the game and may not be banned by clubs. However, there are a number of restrictions on their use. All psychic bids must be recorded in the Club Psyche book by the end of session by the psyching pair. Failure to do so may incur penalties, including losing the right to use psychs at all. Psychs may not be made against inexperienced pairs. Psychic controls (i.e. ways of asking via bidding whether a bid is a psych or not) are prohibited. Strong forcing openings (e.g. 2 clubs) may not be psyched. A psych must fool partner as much as opponents, hence any particular type of psych must not occur by a pair more than roughly twice every 6 months, otherwise it becomes a partnership agreement and must be alerted/disclosed. Rough maximum of 2 psyches per session. See other restrictions and details here.


Slow Play Policy


Procedural Penalty for Bending Cards:

The dealing machine used by the club is antiquated and cannot deal with cards bent in certain ways. The machine stalls, the operator has to remove 3 decks of cards and unbend them and then start the board again. When there is one player with a nervous habit of bending cards, this drastically increases the time needed to prepare boards for a session. I have asked before for cards not to be bent without result; therefore there will now be a 1/4 board penalty for players noted to be bending cards in any way. As with other penalties, repeated offenses may attract higher penalties. This is afforded for under Law 90.


New Way To Call the Director: Rather than call for Director (disturbing other tables), hoping that he heard you and can figure out what table you're at, why not page the Director? On the Bridgemates, press the button on the top row, just under the screen that says "CALL TD" (TD stands for Tournament Director). A screen will pop up saying "Press CALL key to call tournament director". Press the "CALL" key and the Director will be paged (and his pager will show him which table called).


New Website Feature: Partnership Desk Want to play but don't have a partner? On the links at the left side of every page is a "Find a Partner" link. See if someone else is looking for a partner, and if not, email to have your name listed. Once people are paired please email to take names off. This will minimize the email burden to the group.


Tips For Excellent Table Etiquette


Penalty For Late Arrival or Early Departure: Pairs who are not present at a table ready to play at 6:30 p.m. will receive a 1/4 board penalty for the first offense, escalating to a full board, a one session suspension, and longer suspensions for repeated infractions. Pairs who are not both present to complete all their scheduled boards in a session will receive similar escalating penalties. Note that this means pairs should both be prepared to stay until as late as approximately 9:37pm.


Club Follows ACBL Zero Tolerance Policy: Athough already inherent in the Laws of Bridge, the ACBL Zero Tolerance Policy makes it clearer that unacceptable behavior which may detract from the enjoyment of the game will attract penalties. Hart House Bridge Club endorses and enforces this policy. Always call the Director if you feel a violation of this policy may have occurred. However, even if you talk to the Director later, the policy will still be applied. Common penalties for first offense is a 1/4 board penalty, second offense: ejection from the game, subsequent offenses: increasing lengths of suspensions.


Days since last Zero Tolerance Penalty:
Zero Tolerance Penalties Incurred in 2019: 5
Zero Tolerance Penalties Incurred in 2018: 7


Penalty For Fouled Boards: When a board arrives at the next table fouled (hands put in the wrong direction, hands with more or less than 13 cards, etc.) the pairs at the table whence the board came shall be penalized 1/4 of the Masterpoints available on that board. These penalties are listed under the "Adjust" column in the results. Please be careful when replacing cards after play so this doesn't happen.


Count Your Cards: Law 7 of the Laws of Bridge require that each player count the cards in his hand, face-down, before looking at them. This makes fouled boards easier to correct.


Refreshments: Coffee, water and snacks will now be available at the games. Bridgemates will be destroyed if liquid is spilled on them, so please consider drinking away from the table, or use a chair as a side table. Cards are ruined if you have food on your hands (and it's gross for other players) so please use the provided wipes before handling cards. Please put all garbage in the receptacle by the side wall. Hart House does NOT fund the refreshments, so please donate to the Refreshments Fund so we can continue to have refreshments. Also, if you'd like to volunteer to provide snacks for a game please tell the Director.


Late Arrival: Games start at 6:30 sharp, so arrive at least 15 minutes before that to have a chance to talk to your partner, find your table, etc. Once begun, changing movements and boarding may be difficult, time consuming, and sometimes impossible. Therefore, unless you have emailed or texted 647-774-5599 to let the Director know you are arriving late, we may not be able to accomodate late pairs.


ACBL Student Membership If you're under 25, 1 year membership is $5. This includes a monthly magazine subscription and discounts at tournaments. The director has instant membership cards. This also enables you to see how you did against a wider field and get more feedback on each hand via thecommongame.com. If you won Masterpoints before joining the ACBL, the Director can give you receipts for these which you can mail in to claim.


Opening Lead Must Be Made Face Down: Law 41A


Asking to see what cards were played: After all four cards are played to a trick, if you haven't turned over your card, you may require that the other players show what cards they played. Once you've turned over your card, you may not ask, although you may look at the card you played until the next card is played to the next trick.Law 66


Declarer plays from wrong hand: If declarer calls for a card from dummy, the card has been played. Dummy may not then say "you're in your hand". He should be silent. Dummy may, however, remind declarer where she is if it appears Declarer is about to play from the wrong hand. If the opponents inform the declarer he's played from the wrong hand, that doesn't constitute accepting the lead. Either defender may accept or reject the lead out of turn, but they may not confer. If the defenders disagree, the defender next to play after the irregular lead prevails. If the defender to the right of the irregularly led card plays a card, then the lead has been accepted. Law 42 and Law 55