Sometime back in January I wrote a research paper entitled " Where does beastly behaviour in bridge come from ?". The gist of my report was to establish a causal connection between the behavioural characteristics of bridge players and lycanthropy. The theory that was put forward was that as soon as bridge players picked up their first hand, the process of transforming into beasts had already begun.
Well, the headline I used above was "lifted" from the very same one Marshall Smith used in his published 1957 article, when he first observed how the big league bridge players behaved at top ranking tournaments. He too noticed their savage, unforgiving, beastly behaviour, but he never make the lycanthropic connection. Neverthelesss, Marshall did manage to list the beastly characteristics often associated with the big tournament players of that era ( as listed below ):
- the all round conceit of a peacock
- the night habits of an owl
- the rapacity of a crocodile
- the sly inscrutability of a snake
- the memory of an elephant
- the wildness of a lion
- the endurance of a bull
- the killer instinct of a wolf
So as far as Marshall was concerned, the big tournaments were places where mere mortals and ordinary bridge players were well advised to stay away from. These deadly arenas were " inhabited by a handful of conceited, ruthless but gifted players ", who regarded the weak, meek and mild as "dog-meat ". Indeed, even the average plus players were nothing more than " kibitzing monkeys " to such stalking predators.
Maybe, I had overlooked an important correlation possibility, which might well link the severity of the beastly transformation with the high status ranking of the player. Clearly, more research into this topic is needed .......