While I learned bridge basics while young, I never played seriously until a coworker who was an accomplished bridge player got us started playing at lunch in the early 90s. This grew into social playing, novice games with my father-in-law at the Bridge Club of Delaware County, and eventually club play at North Penn in Landsdale.
Eventually we developed a core group of players that put together to form teams. Some of us went to the Philadelphia NABC in 1996 where we won a trophy in some side contest – we thought we knew everything there was to know about bridge! 30 years later I now realize I’m a bridge imbecile with so much more to learn.
While I had limited time to play bridge in those years, our base four-person team, along Jack & Dave Willgruber and Lou Primavera, continued to play in area team events. Once I retired from full-time work, I was able to start playing more frequently. While I continue to develop my pairs play, teams remains my favorite form of play. Our team qualified for the 2023 GNT flight C in Chicago, making it to the semifinals before losing to the eventual champions.
I do my best to try to get new players involved in duplicate. I have a few advancing players I partner with regularly, and a few more just getting started. There’s fun in bridge for everyone, and we need to get new players involved to keep it going. During the covid lockdown, I was able to get my 90-year-old parents on BBO to play with my brother, who is also just beginning. Our group phone calls and playing sessions were one of the few socialization opportunities they had during that period. They are now playing live bridge in their community.