Friday, January 18, 2008

Bobby Fischer Dies

Bobby Fischer has died at age 64. Chess was his life, and his years were numbered to match that 8x8 world. As a "Bobby Boomer," I have mixed feelings about his passing. It was Fischer who helped draw me into chess; but the chess world may have been better off if he had died 35 years ago -- shortly after winning the title. I was alerted to his passing by a sudden spike in traffic to all things Fischer-related that I've posted. Web traffic was coming in so quickly that it overwhelmed our site (until I upgraded our account). Maybe that traffic is a sign that Fischer's passing will release a flood of chess nostalgia in fellow boomers, who will come streaming into the club over the coming weeks. If Bobby's rise to the throne helped Americans discover chess, perhaps his death can do as much to renew it, much as "the Fisher King" must die for his kingdom to see a rebirth...

Obituaries at AFP, AP, BBC, CNN, New York Times, Reuters, Telegraph, and Times Online.



Blogger Michael Goeller said...

The USCF website has since published two of the best pieces I have seen remembering Fischer and asking about his legacy, one by Jennifer Shahade and the other by Mike Klein. I also appreciated some of the insights offered by Dominic Lawson in The Independent. I'm sure there will be more interesting things written about Fischer in the coming weeks.

Sun Jan 20, 08:02:00 AM EST  

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