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Late-bird event, games 4–5, Duke Pediatric Blood and Marrow Transplantation Program benefit Scrabble tournament, Jan. 15, 2018

February 4, 2018

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com Feb. 4, 2018 My third-round victory in the late-bird tournament left multiple players with two wins and one loss. Due to the spread tie-breaker, K— remained atop the table at plus-263; I was second at plus-22; the tournament organizer, my friend D—, was third at minus-18; and C— was fourth […]

Duke Pediatric Blood and Marrow Transplantation Program benefit Scrabble tournament: Session 2, Jan. 13, 2018

January 20, 2018

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com Jan. 20, 2018 I ran a bunch of errands over the lunch break before returning for the second session of the annual Duke PBMT benefit Scrabble tournament. I felt like I’d had a respectable morning overall. Yes, my two losses had been annoying, but to be fair to myself, I’d […]

Duke Pediatric Blood and Marrow Transplantation Program benefit Scrabble tournament: Session 1, Jan. 13, 2018

January 19, 2018

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com Jan. 17, 2018 I arranged the evening of Friday, Jan. 12, so as to get home and go to bed at a decent hour — and the plan worked out. Unfortunately, my brain and body didn’t cooperate, and it wasn’t until sometime around 5 a.m. that I finally fell asleep. […]

Bad-Ugly-Good: Taking stock of 1-2 Stanford

September 20, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com Sept. 20, 2017 With Stanford kicking off at 10:30 Saturday evening against San Diego State, I was flying solo for my football-watching this past weekend. I stopped by a downtown Durham barcade, where I chatted and played pinball with my pal D— and his girlfriend; I also set a high […]

Non-adventures in dog-sitting, part 2

June 29, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com June 29, 2017 Late Tuesday afternoon, I showered, took the dog outside and set out for Sterling, Va., which is a 20 or 25-minute drive from where I’m staying. I was going to — well, let’s call it Massive Marvin’s, a dining establishment that a pair of Internet websites assured […]

March 25, 2017, mall Scrabble recap, part 3

April 8, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com April 8, 2017 Two straight defeats had dropped my record to an unremarkable 3-3, and my seventh game would hardly be a walk in the park. My opponent was to be K.L., the event’s second-highest-seeded player. Playing first, K.L. began the game with IODINE 16. My response, PEONY, garnered 15 points […]

March 25, 2017, mall Scrabble recap, part 2

April 7, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com April 7, 2017 Coming out of the lunch break, I was pitted against my friend D—, whom I’d beaten 395-344 in Delaware in December. (Our only other previous official encounter had been a 355-310 decision in his favor in September 2012.) Playing second, he took a 51-42 lead in turn […]

Delaware Scrabble recap, 12/28/2016 (finale)

January 5, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com Jan. 5, 2017 Going into the final round of the Delaware tournament, I had some bad news and some good news. The bad news was three-fold. One, I was not guaranteed to be the division victory; two, in the final round I’d be facing a skilled player; and three, that […]

Delaware Scrabble recap, 12/28/2016 (part 4)

January 5, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com Jan. 5, 2017 Although it felt as if hours had passed since I’d begun my game against Lady Persistence, I still had two more contests left to play. I convened my seventh-round match against KB, whom I’d beaten by 200 points the afternoon before, as hastily as I could. Although I […]

Delaware Scrabble recap, 12/28/2016 (part 1)

January 2, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken MEMwrites.wordpress.com Jan. 2, 2017 I slept solidly my third night at the hotel, so I was feeling much better at the start of Wednesday’s competition than I had the day before. My goal for the day was to improve on Tuesday’s third-place 5-3 finish, preferably by at least matching the 7-1 second-place showing […]