Welcome everyone to 500 today.
It is one year since we first ran a series of 6 classes.
The classes are billed as teaching how to play but in practice most people were well aware of how to play the game/
The few newcomers to the game picked up the ideas very quickly.

Keeping this in mind the sessions will run in a similar format to the last time.
As you arrive please introduce yourselves to others and sit at an available table to partner up.
Pairs are able able to sit together as a partnership. Games will run within a 50 minute time frame.
Pairs will be asked to swap tables for the next round of 50 minutes.
Hopefully this will accommodate a 4.00 o’clock start and a 6.00 finish.

A short break will occur at the 50 minute mark, new players will be introduced to everyone.
A drinks and rest break of 5 minutes and a short period where questions can be asked on the game and some tactics will be taught.

As an aside house rules apply which can be clarified by the Director.
We try to stick as close to the original 500 format as much as possible.

Misere is a special part of the game where one tries to lose all the tricks.
It is useful but overused can detract from the fun of the game.
I would specifically ask no more than 2 misere bids per partnership per game.
Part of the game is also to get the bidding to go every round if possible.
To this end I would encourage the first person in every hand to make an opening bid of 6 spades unless they have a proper bid to make.
This encourages the less daring to get used to making bids.
The spade bidder is under no obligation to bid again or to have any points in their hand.

Tips and cautions.
Misere has to be bid only after a seven level bid has been made and cannot be made if the person making it has already passed.
Extra tricks can be saved by discarding a weak side suit completely.
[Ask at the halftime break!]
For the novices Spades is the lowest bid suit followed by clubs diamonds and hearts.
A completed bid of 10 hearts, 10 no trumps or open misere for a side with a non negative score wins the game.
Otherwise one can only pass 500 and win by making a successful bid, not by defeating an opponents contract.
If nobody is making a bid the Joker is probably in the kitty!

Have fun and see you next week as well.

BOM Adjustments

Climate Driver Update
Climate drivers in the Pacific, Indian and Southern oceans and the Tropics
2 February 2021
The 2020–21 La Niña has likely passed its peak, with all of the international climate models surveyed by the Bureau anticipating NINO3.4
will return to borderline or neutral values by mid-autumn.
The graph shows 7, count them, Climate models.
A change from the 19/1/2021 Climate Driver Update which featured 8 international climate models.
Only NASA.
Why? Surely not because NASA correctly predicted the moderate La Nina and had the temerity to predict
that it would keep going for at least 4 months
The opposite to BOM.
The sea surface temperature anomaly was predicted to go to -2.4 C for February, 2.6 C for March and 2.4 for April.
I am at a loss to fathom why they would drop the most highly respected data set, NASA after relying on it for years.
Perhaps someone could use the wayback machine on it.
I certainly feel they need to offer an explanation even if it is only a technical error.
It does seem a rather crude attempt to not publish data that disagrees with theirs.