ACBL23 – General: Hard to Learn          Ward Trumbull

                                            and Remember                       Dec 13, 2005

                                                                                                                   Page 1 of 7


            If bridge was easy, who would want to play it?............Longfellow



ACBL01 - Opening Bids and Responses


          1. Q - How many HCP are required to open?

              A - 11 HCP with a 5+ card suit and all 12+ HCP hands.


          2. Q - How many cards are needed to bid a major?

              A - 5+ cards to open or

                    5+ cards to overcall but

                    4+ (only four) to respond.

                         The exception is negative up on it.


          3. Q - How many HCP to respond to an opening bid at the one level?

              A - 6+ HCP at the one level and 10+ HCP at the two level.


ACBL02 - Doubles


          1. Q - With 16 reasons to double, which 3 are the most important?

              A – 1st  - The takeout double after RHO has opened the bidding.

                    2nd - The negative double to indicate you have a 4 card major,

                             as opposed to a 5+ card major, which you would bid.

                    3rd  - The penalty double when you’re pretty sure your team

                              can set the opponent’s contract.  Even when you are

                              KINDA SURE.


ACBL03 - Weak 2s and OGUST


          1. Q - Why play Weak 2s?

              A - If you make 3 level preemptive bids to disrupt the opponents,

                    why not also make 2 level preemptive bids for the same




                     ACBL23 – General: Hard to Learn             Dec 13, 2005

                                                          and Remember                      Page 2 of 7


ACBL03 - Weak 2s and OGUST (CONTINUED)


          2. Q - What is OGUST?

              A - It’s a bunch of Minis, Maxis, Ones and Twos.  So easy to


                    Actually, it is an asking bid in response to partner’s opening

                    weak 2 bid.  Partner then responds to indicate:

                             1st  - HCP range   

                             2nd - Status of top three cards (ace/king/queen) in

                                       his/her suit


ACBL04 - Notrump Bidding


          1. Q - What is the minimum HCP to invoke Stayman?

              A -  8 HCP (with an exception)


          2. Q - What is the minimum HCP to invoke a Jacoby Transfer?

              A -  Zero (that’s none or zip).


          3. Q - Who will/should/must play the hand when your partner opens

                   1 or 2 notrump?

              A - Partner, partner (i.e., partner)


ACBL05 - Strong 2 Clubs


          1. Q - What is the minimum HCP to open 2 clubs?

              A - 19-21 HCP if it is a notrump type hand.

 - 9 HCP (e.g., A-K-Q heading a 10 card spade suit) if it is a

   distributional hand going to game.

                    Really though, it’s not HCP.  It’s a playing hand that should be

                    within one trick of making game by itself.


          2. Q - How do you respond to opening 2 club bids?

              A - 1st   - Bid your longest suit.

                    2nd - Use the Jacoby Step Response if partner agrees.

                    3rd  - Use a waiting 2 diamonds with partnership agreement.

                     ACBL23 – General: Hard to Learn             Dec 13, 2005

                                                          and Remember                      Page 3 of 7


ACBL06 – Bridge by the Numbers


          1. Q - Of the 13 items listed in ACBL06, which 3 are the most


              A - All 13, especially the three you keep forgetting.


ACBL07 - Opening Leads


          1. Q - What is most important to remember?

              A - The rules for opening leads to a suit contract are not the same

                    as to a notrump contract.


          2. Q – Name three common opening lead errors?

              A -  1st   - Suit contracts: Not leading from top of a sequence.

                     2nd - Suit contracts: Leading or underleading an unprotected

                              ace. “Unprotected” means the hand doesn’t also have

                              the king in that suit.

                     3rd - Notrump Contracts: Not leading the fourth card down in

                             a suit, i.e., leading third sometimes and fifth others.


ACBL08 - Gerber and Blackwood


          1. Q - When should you use Gerber and when should you use


              A  - Use Gerber after opening notrump bids and when both

                    partners have bid the same suit.  Use Blackwood in all other



                     NOTE: Except as noted above, a direct  jump to 4 clubs after

                                 partner opens 1 of a major should/must be Gerber.


ACBL09 - Roman Keycard Gerber and Blackwood


          1. Q - Why use Roman Keycard?

              A  - In suit contracts it helps locate the king of trump as well as

                     the four aces.  Also two of the responses confirm or deny

                     having the queen of trump.

                     ACBL23 – General: Hard to Learn             Dec 13, 2005

                                                          and Remember                      Page 4 of 7


ACBL10 - Overcalls, Takeout Doubles, Cue Bids, etc.


          1. Q - How many HCP are needed to overcall and/or double?

              A  - 6 to 12 at the one level to overcall and 8 to 12 at the two level.

                     to overcall.  With stronger hands try to double instead, even

                     though you may have a suit of your own.  Your team might be

                     the ones with the most points.


ACBL11 - The Rule of Eleven


          1. Q - What the hell is the rule?

              A -  Usually it applies to leads to notrump contracts, and is used

                    mentally by the leader’s partner and/or the declarer to compute

                    the distribution of higher cards in that suit.


ACBL12 - Puppet Stayman


          1. Q - Why should I learn it?

              A -  Don’t bother.


ACBL13 - Defense


          1. Q - Explain Attitude and Count.

              A -  Attitude is what my wife has, but I have what counts.


                     Attitude signals are high cards for “come on” and low cards

                     for “stay away or no interest”.  Use attitude signals when

                     partner leads a suit or when discarding on leads from

                     partner, dummy or declarer.


          2. Q - What is and what’s so important about “lower of touching


              A -  Nothing if you don’t do it or look for it.  It would be another

                    bridge refinement you haven’t bothered to learn and use.



                       ACBL23 – General: Hard to Learn           Dec 13, 2005

                                                            and Remember                     Page 5 of 7


ACBL13 – Defense (touching honor continued)


               A -  If someone else leads a suit (partner, declarer or dummy)

                     and you are going to play one of touching cards, play the

                     lowest.  It often pinpoints higher cards in that suit for partner,

                     and the fact  that you don’t have the card immediately below

                     the one you played.                       



ACBL14 - Finessing


          1. Q - Why learn the art (technique) of finessing?.

              A - It’s the way to develop extra tricks when you are the declarer.

                    Also it is the first indication that you are no longer a RANK



ACBL15 - Unusual Notrump


          1. Q - What is it and why use it?

              A -  It is a hand with two 5+ card suits.  Normally it’s not an

                    opening hand.  After the opponents open the bidding, a skip to

                    2 notrump would be an Unusual Notrump hand.  However, it

                    might be a good hand, and you need to know which of the two

                    suits partner can support (i.e., has 3+ cards).


                     A deviation is a passed hand that reenters the bidding with a

                     1  notrump bid.




          1. Q - What does ARCH stand for?


                     A = Always try to be the declarer.

                     R = Rush to bid notrump before partner, regardless how

                           many cards the team has in a major suit.

                     C = Change partners if yours plays too many hands.

                     H = Have a good time no matter how bad partner plays.

                       ACBL23 – General: Hard to Learn           Dec 13, 2005

                                                            and Remember                     Page 6 of 7


ACBL16 – ARCH (continued – the real answer)


                     A = Analyze the opening lead

                     R = Review the bidding

                     C = Count your winners and losers

                     H = How are you going to play the hand


ACBL17 - Bridge to English Translation


          1. Q -.How soon should I learn and understand all these bridge


              A - Yesterday or sooner.


ACBL18 - Response Points


          1. Q - Any easy tips to learn these response point ranges?.

              A – Review them with your partner(s), many many times.


ACBL19 - Safety Plays


          1. Q - What is a safety play?

              A - It is the declarer play in a suit, where he/she anticipates

                   a possible bad split and plays that suit carefully.


ACBL20 - Natural Bids vs Conventional Bids


          1. Q - What is a Natural Bid?

              A - When the suit you bid is the suit you’ve got


          2. Q - What is a Conventional Bid?

              A -  When the suit you bid means something else, e.g.:


                            2 clubs in response to notrump is Stayman

                            2 diams, hearts, spades in response to notrump is

                               Jacoby Transfer  or Minor Suit Transfer

                            4 clubs asking aces is Gerber


                       ACBL23 – General: Hard to Learn           Dec 13, 2005

                                                            and Remember                     Page 7 of 7


ACBL21 - Natural Bids Vs Conventional Bids


          1. Q - How can I get a good score on the worksheet?

              A - Sit next to Ward and peek.


          2. Q - How else?

              A - List the conventions you know.  List the conventions that you

                    play.  List the reasons you don’t know/play all the other



ACBL22 - Defense and the Dummy


          1. Q - What is Broken Strength?

              A - When dummy has face cards in a suit but they aren’t



          2. Q - What is CONTIGUOUS?

              A -  Touching.


          3. Q - What is touching?

              A - My baby pictures.