HOMEPAGE > QUIZ > MOVIES > WEEK 51
 
The Maltese Falcon (part 8)
starring you as Sam Spade


Dealer : South
Vuln: None

 North Cairo
  
  
  
  

BRIDGE MOVIE #51

West Fat Man



East Sam
J 8 7 4
K 7 6 5
Q J
J 5 4

I took the bird to a safe deposit box and mailed the ticket to my office. Then Brigid and I went to my place. When we arrived, the Fat Man was there, along with Cairo and the Gunsel. They had just come from the boat, and were disappointed not to find the captain, who was carrying the black bird. I told them not to worry. The bird was with me and for a price they could have it. The Fat Man suggested that I be tortured instead, and tried to make his words stick by sitting opposite me in the West seat. Meanwhile, Brigid sat South and Cairo North, as the Gunsel kibitzed.

Let's make this quick, said the Fat Man. If we win, we get the bird. If you win, you get the bird. In either case, Mr. Spade releases the bird, but if we win he'll get half the profit.

Doesn't sound like a good deal to me, I said.

One must consider one's position before determining what is a good deal and what is not, said the Fat Man.

Meanwhile, the auction had come to me. Should I raise the Fat Man with
my Q-J doubleton or pass?

 

 South Brigid
  
  
  
  

South
1
  
West
1
  
North
1
  

East
?
  



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Dealer : South
Vuln: None

 North Cairo
  
  
  
  
West Fat Man



East Sam
J 8 7 4
K 7 6 5
Q J
J 5 4

I passed. I had seen the Fat Man before and he was a dangerous partner. Raising on the doubleton, albeit two honors, would probably get us in trouble. Soon the auction was up to 3NT. Should I double or pass it out?

 

 South Brigid
  
  
  
  

South
1
2
3NT
  
West
1
pass
pass
  
North
1
3
pass
  

East
pass
pass
?
  


Dealer : South
Vuln: None

 North Cairo
   K Q 10 9 3 2
   J 9 4
   9 3
   K 10
West Fat Man



East Sam
J 8 7 4
K 7 6 5
Q J
J 5 4

I decided to pass it out. If I doubled, it wasn't clear that I wanted a diamond led. The Fat Man had peculiar ideas and might think the double was Lightner for the first suit bid in dummy. I passed, expecting a diamond lead, but if I got a heart lead from an honor, it might not be so bad either.

He led a diamond. OK. I put in the jack, and Brigid won the trick quickly with the ace, then plunked the spade 6 on the table. The Fat Man started to rock back and forth, studying the position. From my angle, Brigid probably had six club tricks along with the ace of diamonds. If the Fat Man let her win a spade trick, and she held the ace of hearts, she'd steal the contract. The jack of diamonds had forced the ace, so I didn't see the problem. Didn't my partner know I held the queen of diamonds?

Suddenly, I realized that Brigid's reputation was playing games in my partner's mind. Suppose the whole layout had been something like this:

 North Cairo
   K Q 10 9 3 2
   J 9 4
   9 3
   K 10
West Fat Man
A 5
Q 10 8 2
K 10 8 6 5
8 6
East Sam
J 8 7
A K 7 6
J 7 2
J 5 4
 

 South Brigid
   6 4
   5 3
   A Q 4
   A Q 9 7 3 2

Brigid might win the first trick with the ace of diamonds to make it look like I held the queen. Then when she leads a spade next, she hopes the Fat Man wins the ace of spades and continues with a low diamond.

So when the Fat Man wins this trick, I must help him out with a signal in spades. The problem is what signal. Would the Fat Man interpret my spade play as a suit-preference card between hearts and diamonds? Or would it be better to play the jack of spades, as an alarm clock signal, to tell him I had the queen of diamonds - not her?!

The Fat Man finally went up with the ace, and I decided to go with the alarm clock idea. I played the jack.

 

 South Brigid
  
  
  
  

South
1
2
3NT
  
West
1
pass
pass
  
North
1
3
pass
  

East
pass
pass
pass
  

Opening lead: 6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Dealer : South
Vuln: None

 North Cairo
   K Q 10 9 3 2
   J 9 4
   9 3
   K 10
West Fat Man
A 5
Q 10 8
K 10 8 6 5 2
8 6
East Sam
J 8 7 4
K 7 6 5
Q J
J 5 4

The Fat Man's eyes bulged when he saw my jack. He then shifted triumphantly to the queen of hearts. Brigid took the rest, 3NT making with three overtricks. The Fat Man was furious, of course. Madam, he said to Brigid, how could you dare not duck a couple of diamonds, in case my partner held the ace of spades?

Oh, Sam, she said, turning her innocent brown eyes in my direction, how could I duck a couple of diamonds and reveal my hand? By winning the first round, I gave him the opportunity to play me for ace-queen.

The Gunsel then made a fatal error: Shouldn't the Fat Man play the king of diamonds before switching to hearts, just in case?

That's when I mentioned that the police would arrive any minute, and we had to have a fall guy, and that the Gunsel fit the bill. After the Gunsel's embarrassing remark, the Fat Man was quite ready to agree.

THE END of Part VIII

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 South Brigid
   6
   A 3 2
   A 7 4
   A Q 9 7 3 2

South
1
2
3NT
  
West
1
pass
pass
  
North
1
3
pass
  

East
pass
pass
pass
  

Opening lead: 6

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