In 2006 , when Nigel Short visited Malawi, somebody asked him: “How many moves do you think ahead?”
He clearly didn’t like the question, so he feigned to say “What?”, as he gathered his mental shields.
“How many moves ahead do you think?“, oblivious to Nigel’s discomfort or just plain insensitive the guy insisted on the question. Then Short answered curtly, “13!’
Though there was a cheer from the people around, Short continued: “But that’s not a pretty good question because it’s like you are asking me what’s the strength of the string of your strength?”
Indeed there are some things that are meant to be secrets. Its not everything you reveal to people. You need maturity to know what to keep to yourself or what to give out. You may end up giving yourself to the enemy.
This is common on the chessboard. An effective strategy plays out when your opponent finds out your true intentions when it’s too late to do anything about it. This is not very easy to achieve but once it is executed perfectly you might just get rewarded by your opponent looking surprised or leaning back forcefully into his chair as if kicked by a mule!
None other encompassed mystery on the chessboard like the master Tigran Petrosian. He would make some mysterious looking moves and his opponents would be none the wiser to the intention behind them. Today, with the benefit of analysis and hindsight we have termed his anticipative style as prophylactic but back then it was just plain voodoo! Even then I can’t help but ponder that perhaps we’ve just managed to captured in description a small fraction of that elusive magic. That there is no complete description of that style anytime since.
Keeping your plans close to you is also divine. Even God himself has not revealed the day of his coming to anybody. May God grant you wisdom on what to say to who and why.
Have a blessed Sunday.