THE PLEASURE AND THE PAIN
For many people, bridge is a meaningless, cruel and bizarre pastime......but for those of us who know and love the game, it is simply beautiful and magnificent. Yes, it can make fools and demons of us, but at the same time it can make us feel like Gods. Bridge is never a whim,,,,,,, it is a passion. Bridge is not a cruel sport it.......it is the ultimate challenge. People who have never played the game have no way of understanding its awesome appeal.
Bridge still tends to be more of a social game than a hard competitive sport, and even if it does get a bit bloody at times, it is far removed from the physically demanding games like boxing or football. For me the game is extremely gentle, subtle, far more beautiful and satisfying than any other recreational activity. Even when the game hurts us psychologically with a succession of bad results, or the relentless bickering of partners frustrated by your errors, the pain can be so easily washed away by the pleasures of recording a few good boards ........and the inevitable compliments that may come your way.
As players, we must endeavour to absorb painful experiences, the inexorability of disaster and defeat, into ourselves without shame or anger. We should not externalise our negative feelings by whinging and moaning.....but simply welcome and accept the despair... the anguish.......with an open mind and open arms. Only then can we really begin to experience the joy and pleasure this game of bridge has to offer.
As the great prophet Gibran once remarked : " The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain. Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter's oven ? "
To a man dying of thirst, a simple glass of water becomes the the sweetest and most enjoyable drink of his life.