ACBL Bridge Beat #47: Kibitzers

No masterpoints are awarded for kibitzing, no matter how skillful you are at it. Nobody keeps statistics on hours spent kibitzing or on how many great players you’ve watched.

Nevertheless, there are all types of kibitzers.

The first step to becoming a good kibitzer is to know the game. You don’t have to know it intimately, but you should know the elements of the game or, at the very least, the name of the game.

Many years ago at an all-night game, a spat erupted over a lead out of turn around 6 a.m. The players asked the kibitzer who had been there watching since 9 p.m. to make the ruling. The kibitzer didn’t want to make the ruling but all parties felt he was the fairest judge. The kibitzer was handed a copy of The Laws of Contract Bridge from which to rule. He looked at the book with great interest and said, “So that’s what you’re playing. I thought it couldn’t be pinochle.”

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