Monday, November 07, 2011

Word of the Day: zugzwang

zugzwang (n)

In chess, a position in which one player can move only with loss or severe disadvantage. Metaphorically, a situation in which there are no good options.

"Gregor sighed. 'There's no such thing as fate. Just likelihoods, and situations where there's no right move, only moves of varying degrees of wrongness. It's a case of zugswang.'
'Zugzwang? Is that a dirty word for something interesting?'"
--T. A. Pratt, Poison Sleep

I haven't played chess in quite a while. I think I like the idea of chess, and the romantically medieval imagery of the pieces, more than the game itself, which I usually find protracted and frustrating, even if I'm winning. Too much like life. There have been times when I've felt like a pawn or a knight; never really like a king, a bishop, a rook, or a queen. And I rarely find that situations are black and white.



A recently unearthed deleted scene from Blue Velvet. Interesting scene; worth releasing as an extra; totally unnecessary to the film.

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