Brandon Fogel came within a dot and some fine print of winning four of the seven Best Country awards for Season 11. Instead, he had to settle for one Best Country and a couple of titles for a campaign that saw him top a near-record 6.5 boards while running away with the league's regular season title.
Fogel was the Weasel of the Year, amassing 149.505 points. He broke away from the pack down the stretch by topping four boards in a row and six out of seven from April 27 through August 10. Obviously, he also earned Top Weasel honors.
Last Updated (Tuesday, 16 August 2016 15:01)
With regular season play completed for the 11th season of Windy City Weasels Diplomacy, the field is now set for the club's ninth annual Weasel Royale club championship game, date to be determined at Dan Burgess' home in Downers Grove. The seven combatants, in seed order, will be:
Ironically, the only incumbent on the Sneak who survived the "Throw the bums out" purge* last weekend at the Weasel Pyle was the guy who occasionally shows up looking like a hobo. Even former Sneak member Kevin O'Kelly was rejected by the angry electorate.
Joining John Gramila on the Ninth Sneak will be Brian Shelden, the leading vote-getter who ran on a platform or experience--he served on the Potomac Tea & Knife Society board and also organized the New York City hobby years ago--and a pledge to help Jim O'Kelley lighten his workload; Brandon Fogel, who said he'd like to develop an app to help archive games; and Jake Trotta, who would like to work on the website.
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Help break in Brian Shelden's apartment and the new season of Windy City Weasels Diplomacy with a rare Friday evening game of Diplomacy.
Last Updated (Saturday, 20 August 2016 11:59)
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In a season dominated by the club's New Guard--in terms of games played and boards topped--it was the vaunted Old Guard that crested the ridge on the final day of play yesterday at our 11th Weasel Pyle in Wayne. Carrying the colors were Eric Brown, Christian Kline and Matt Sundstrom, veterans of our first, third and ninth games, respectively.
Last Updated (Sunday, 14 August 2016 10:31)
One of the knocks on Diplomacy is that it's a game that ruins friendships. Nonsense. For me, Diplomacy has forged friendships.
This week, though, I did lose two of my Diplomacy friends, not to the game, but to cancer. On Monday, Mark "Faz" Fassio, one of the inspirations for this club, finally lost his four-year fight.
Now, we've just learned that earlier today, our friend and former Prime Weasel Nate Cockerill lost his battle. Here's a photo of Nate (right) with Matt Sundstrom during happier times at a Weasel Pyle a few years ago.
Last night's final Red Wednesday of the season was, paradoxically, as typical as it was atypical. On the one hand, Brandon Fogel ran his board-topping total to a gaudy 6.5. He now has a real shot at tying, if not breaking, Peter Lokken's longstanding record of 7.5 board tops in a season. That one has held since the 2010-11 season.
On the other hand, we had two new recruits, which is something of a rarity in this down year for new blood. But even more significant, both were female, which is as unusual as it is welcome. Not for lack of effort, our progress at diversifying the player base has been inconsistent at best.
Last Updated (Thursday, 11 August 2016 14:06)
In addition to the backstabbing, players in Game No. 306, played Saturday at Pete McNamara's home in Evanston, were treated to ribs and brisket courtesy of grillmaster Pete.
"The barbecue turned this one up to 11," remarked Bryan Pravel, who, having now played in 13 club games, all since January, is something of an authority on the Weasels scene.
Could the club now have a third host extraordinaire to rival Messrs. Brown and Burgess?
As for the game, depsite being a house game with a generous 11 hours allotted for play, it ended by draw vote during the Spring 1906 turn in the following center counts:
Last Updated (Sunday, 31 July 2016 19:29)
A new Bar Room Brawl series will kick off next month at the Red Lion in Lincoln Square. Join us September 14 for the first Red Wednesday of Season 12!
When: Sept. 14 at 6:30 p.m. until no later than 11.
Where: The Red Lion in Lincoln Square, 4749 N Rockwell.
Last Updated (Sunday, 21 August 2016 08:53)
Chris Martin (right) captures David Maletsky (left) negotiating with Chris Brand during the world championship game.
What a difference a couple of years make. Back in 2014, between rounds at the World Diplomacy Championship at DixieCon in Chapel Hill, Chris Brand and I were lamenting our lackluster performances over a beer at a Franklin Street pub.
Last Updated (Monday, 11 July 2016 18:28)