I don’t like the fact that my bullet rating has been dropping. My highest bullet rating was 1713, and that was on February 2, 2020 — more than two years ago. In the last 90 days, the best I got to was 1570. And today, my rating is 1352.
Does that mean I’m a much worse chess player than I was two years ago? I sure hope not. I know much more about chess today than I knew two years ago, but my rating doesn’t reflect that.
Chess is the only game where the more you play, the worse you become.
One of the main reasons my bullet rating is dropping could be that I haven’t been playing longer time controls. Another reason could be that I haven’t been solving puzzles, practicing endgames, or trying to improve in tactics. A third reason could be that I no longer have an opening repertoire. Whether I have the white pieces or the black pieces, my first move is always played on a whim.
It’s really bothering me that I’m becoming worse at chess, but what can I do?
I play the King’s Gambit because, tactically speaking, it’s one of the most poetic openings in chess history. And I’m a poet who likes to play chess. To have a fun game, all I have to do is sacrifice my f-pawn, put a Knight on f3, and place my white Bishop on c4, eyeing the f7 square.
Sometimes, when I’m playing bullet and feeling crazy, I play the first four “King’s Gambit Accepted” moves no matter what, even if it means I’ll blunder a piece. (But that’s not the smartest thing to do, of course.)
The moves I’m talking about are 1.e4, 2.f4, 3.Nf3, 4.Bc4
In today’s game though, I wasn’t feeling so crazy, and my opponent played d5 on move 3. And since I wasn’t planning on blundering a piece in this game, I simply didn’t put my Bishop on c4… because he’ll just capture it. I played 4.Nc3 instead, which, according to the chess engine, was a mistake. But, as you can clearly see in the GIF below, I won anyway.
My 6th and 7th moves seem to be blunders, but maybe they weren’t “huge” blunders. Luckily, my 1388-rated opponent couldn’t see the mistakes or take advantage of them. And I guess my moves were confusing enough to create some sort of a weird tactical advantage.
Move 8 and onwards, I manage to find the best moves and win the game. Familiar patterns, I suppose. And that’s what I’m proud of.