If you did not like the original you should try the director's cut

1/12/2002 – Let's face it. 2001 was not the greatest year for chess, but it was infinitely worse for the rest of the world. If you didn't like 2001 this was because you saw the original version. As a special service to our visitors we bring you a special director's cut, with additional, never-seen-before footage. More

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2001 – The Director's Cut

2001 was not the greatest year for chess, what with tournaments being cancelled left and right, players suffering disasters, people cheating with computers. But even if it was not so hot, it was great compared to what happened outside the chess world. There we can justifiably speak of an all-time rotter, the worst of the worst. Here's how Mike Thompson of the Detroit Free Press sees it:

Well, if you didn't like 2001 it may have been because you saw the original version. As a special service to our visitors we bring you a special director's cut of 2001, with additional, never-seen-before footage. Unfortunately we were unable to find links to the corresponding reports

January
Jan 1: The real new millennium is hailed in. Media outlets and people who celebrated on January 1, 2000 publicly apologize for being mathematically challenged. Jan 20: George W. Bush, walking up the steps to be sworn in as the new President, suddenly breaks down. In tears he faces the cameras and says, "I can't do it! It would be a moralistical outrage for me to accept the presidency when my opponent received a quarter-million more votes." He pulls Al Gore out of the audience and a startled Rehnquist swears Gore in.
February
Feb 3: Billionaire George Soros announces Wijk aan Zee tournament sponsorship until 2040 and says, "The freezing wind, the beer-soaked hall, the pea soup, That's what chess is all about!" Feb 18: Tens of thousands of people flock to Linares daily for the annual super-tournament after the 'Lonely Planet' guidebook for Spain had mistakenly listed the town as "the host of a spectacular chest tournament." Local B-class participant Maria Estabella wins prize for best chest, Kasparov comes second.
March
Mar 27: Britain announces that millions of cattle had been misdiagnosed with mad cow disease. Actually they were just suffering from mild depression and all is well again after several thousand tons of Prozac is mixed into their feed. Mar 14: Bill Gates purchases Switzerland and donates it to the Jewish people, along with 4,000,000 pieces of Samsonite luggage and business-class tickets for everybody in Israel. Hamas and Holy Jihad announces that the fight goes on "until Switzerland is free of the Zionist intruders."
April
April 3: Thanks to the dramatic rise in the popularity of online chess websites, the NASDAQ skyrockets to nearly 3000, carrying the NYSE and then the entire global economy with it. April 14: The Anna Kournikova virus is received by millions of computers worldwide. Attached is a photo of the tennis star and a personal invitation to her home "to maybe watch a movie or something." Despite scheduling difficulties, she honors all the invitations.
May
May 9: A coalition of players led by Peter Leko successfully lobby to change the traditional scoring method to a soccer-style 3-1-0 system. Henceforth, losses are worth zero points, wins are one, draws are three. May 17: Chandra Levy, the former intern of US Congressman Gary Condit, shows up at her home from a tour of the chess circuit. "I was playing in weekend opens," she said, revealing that she had won 200 Elo points in the process.
June

June 18: Slobodan Milosevic is taken to the Hague for war crimes, where he is cleverly cross-examined by Tom Cruise and finally exclaims, "You want the truth? You can't handle the truth! You're damn right we did a lot of ethnic cleansing!" June 22: The US government announces it will put 1% of its budget surplus into chess education and competition. Apparently President Gore played a key role in the development of the game.

July
July 3: Massive riots in Bradford, England turn out not to be racial riots at all, but instead a huge parade by all of the town's citizens in honor of their most famous resident, Mark Crowther of The Week In Chess. July 25: Anand wins Dortmund with +4 score. Raymond Keene announces a deal with Saudi Arabia to fund the next BGN chess world championship cycles.
August
Aug 13: Cloning research makes great advances as Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, and others are all successfully reproduced in a Scottish laboratory. Sales of Pamela Anderson clones turns Scotland into the world's largest economy and further boosts global economic outlook. Aug 28: After two weeks playing GMs on the Fritz7 server, the clone of Paul Morphy declares himself "ready to give these timid Russian gentlemen a thorough thrashing."
September
Sept 11: All airports are closed on American east coast due to heavy fog. 19 middle-eastern passengers are arrested for unruly behaviour when the flight cancellations are announced. Sept 20: Alleged terrorist mastermind Bin Laden is killed when he steps on one of his own land mines. Mr Laden was on his way from the cave in which he resided to the out-house toilet facilities.
October

Oct 9: Mrs. Carol Jiminsky of Chalahoochee, Florida calls FBI to report an Anthrax problem. FBI discover that, as with the Daschle scare, the cause was loud heavy metal music. Oct 12: Afghanistan women revolt against ruling Taliban government and instate secular democracy as well as full human rights. Former beauty queen Sima Wali is elected president. Oct 30: Fritz beats Kramnik narrowly in BGN match in Bahrain and donates entire prize money to youth chess foundation, only picking up a hot little Palm Pilot for itself.

November
Nov 15: ChessBase CD with story of an 11-year-old boy, Garry Plotter, who goes to grandmaster school to learn the magic of chess openings, tactics and endgames, is made into a smash hit Hollywood movie which breaks all box office records. The story about the wizard school bombs. Nov 21: The entire leadership of an Afghani organisation know to locals as "Al Kaida" is wiped out when a massive stink bomb prematurely explodes in their Kandahar science research facilities.
December
Dec 12: Madonnas latest chess song "I wanna mate you, baby" storms the charts, overtaking her previous hit "Like a Gee-ee-ee Em" and leading to further rise in the popularity of chess. Dec 31: US special forces still unable to track down the rabbit that has been destroying the flowers in the White House rose garden. "We will get the pesky critter sooner or later," announced President Al Gore, "Dead or alive, I don't care."

This compilation of events would not have been possible without the invaluable help and tireless research of our colleague Michael ("Mig") Greengard. While living in the Argentine rain forest many years ago, Mig invented the concept of gross humour in chess. He now writes for Kasparov Chess.

Frederic Friedel


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