June 6, 2015
Bumblepuppy Days is its odd, but totally logical, title when you add its sub-title: The Evolution from Whist to Bridge. Most of us are aware that whist is the direct ancestor of bridge. The book covers bridge/whist history from 1670-1948 with unique clarification for 1890s-1910.
I so enjoyed this book! I say that as someone without the bridge skills to appreciate all it offers. There is so much to enjoy–gambling aspects of bridge, card games and their role in American social life. Just the evolving way choosing trump changed the game of bridge–all so interesting to me.
The chapters on the bumblepuppy decades gave me a whole new way of looking at the bridge-whist era. For you who are serious players, or advocates for change, or serve on rules committees, I would think Bumblepuppy Days should be required reading.
Far as I know–and I really searched for bridge history sources when I was writing my own book on sociable bridge–Bumblepuppy Days is unique as history in its clarification of the decades 1890-1910. Reading it I found I need to make a few corrections in my book’s “back story” chapter–the topic for a separate blog.
The author of Bumblepuppy Days, Julian Laderman, is a math professor, bridge player, and author of two ABTA Award winning bridge books–A Bridge to Simple Squeezes, A Bridge to Inspired Declarer Play. Publisher is Master Point Press, www.masterpointpress.com.
So what’s a bumblepuppy?
Well, to be honest, it’s me! A player, Laderman explains, who persists in playing bridge (not whist anymore) with ignorance of its basic principles “or in defiance of them, or both.” There’s a spinoff, “bumbledog” for “an elderly, stubborn bumblepuppy”–that’s me too.
I refuse, however, to embrace a spinoff bumbledame for women players. Bumblady is fine with me! Bumblady Bridge Clubs are exactly what I was writing about in Bridge Table or What’s Trump Anyway?