A Word In Your Ear - October 2, 2014

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It was on the cards that autumn would turn us to indoor pursuits, including another dabble at contract bridge.

“We did a course but are rusty,” I confessed to 
organisers.

Bridge has been a steep learning curve for She Who Knows.

After only playing Snap as a child, she mixes up what she calls card ‘suets’.

“There might be some 
‘psychic bidding’,” I joked.

Though more experienced, our opponents hadn’t heard of this dubious practice in top-level bridge – where wild bids are, hopefully, picked up on by your partner but confuse 
opponents.

Fortunately, the cards fell gently for us. We mostly passed during early bidding for contracts and had the easier option of defending.

Then, after tea and biscuits at ‘half-time’, came my big hand.

It held almost half the pack’s points; with six diamonds, four spades and three other top cards. Only clubs were sparse.

In conservative style (my face is usually an open book), I bid diamonds. Opponents passed as, across the table, She Who Knows supported that suit and raised my bid. Perhaps a Grand Slam 
beckoned!

It was time to show my spades, a stronger suit, but She Who Knows stuck 
stubbornly to a girl’s best friend with a modest raise in 
diamonds. Any slam would be a small one.

If only she had some clubs, I thought, we could take the easier path of No Trumps.

With resignation, I chose game in diamonds and She Who Knows settled into her favourite role – as Dummy.

It was then she turned over her cards – just two diamonds, the rest mostly clubs.

“Oh!” she apologised, seeing my face. “I meant to bid clubs, sorry.”

I fumbled on in shock and, to everyone’s amazement, won.

“Tell me,” asked an awed opponent afterwards, “was that psychic bidding?”

She Who Knows smiled then replied coyly, “I think it must have been.”

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