The Apocalypse is Upon Us

Grandmaster Vassily Ivanchuck (No relation to Grandmaster Flash) refused to take a drug test after the Chess Olympiucs and now could face a two year ban for doping. Yes, doping, the kind of stuff bike riders do in the Tour de France. But how in the hell could this help a chess player? …when a chess player nears the end of a match and comes under mounting pressure, he can hyperventilate, and his pulse can shoot up to 160 and his arterial blood pressure to 200. In that situation, beta-blockers could help a player keep his head clear. Um, sure, whatever. This just sounds creepy and Big Brotherish. So does a chess player named Robert Hubner, once ranked third in the world. He considers doping tests to be a bureaucratic show of power, and he believes that the tests are degrading and deprive the individual of rights and responsibilities. Drug tests will be introduced into Germany’s federal chess league next year, and when that happens, says Hübner, he will give up his career immediately. What a badass. This is a hell of a story. There hasn’t been this much controversy in chess since the Turk.

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