Bridge players dueling in YC
Dave Robison of Yuba City learned to play bridge at age 7 when he was sick with the measles and then the mumps.
"My in-laws were both avid players. He got sick and (his mother) said, 'OK, bring out the cards,'" said Gloria Robison, Dave's wife.
Now 63, Dave was among roughly 160 bridge players who participated in the four-day 23rd annual Sutter Buttes Sectional Bridge Tournament at Whiteaker Hall in Yuba City. Friday was the second day of play and the first day of pairs competition in the event hosted by Sutter Buttes Unit 460 of the American Contract Bridge League.
Mary Rovai, 75, partnered with her husband, Lowis Rovai, 83, for the competition. They were representing the Eureka unit.
"We're one of the few couples who can play together. Sometimes (couples) expect too much from their partner and get to arguing and criticizing," Mary said.
To keep that from happening to them, the couple always keeps in mind that in the end, they're only playing a game, Mary said.
Mary picked up the game 15 years ago, but it was her husband who began playing "a long, long time ago," she said.
"(Bridge is) stimulating for the mind and it's something a person can do that's not physical," Mary said. "Sometimes you make a goofy mistake and you just have to forget it."
Though Mary wanted to do well, she said she was mostly there to have fun.
Chris Panos, 40, of Sacramento attended the tournament for the same reason and to earn more silver points in his quest to receive a life master designation.
"I'm going for a life master and beyond. I'll continue to play (after becoming one)," Panos said.
Still, having fun is very important, he said.
"I just come to enjoy myself, I'm very conscious of the points, but I'm here to have fun," Panos said.
Panos took lessons for two years to learn how to play.
"I enjoy it. It's a mental challenge," Panos said. "It's the most complicated card game."
The tournament continues today at Whiteaker Hall at 10:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. On Sunday, the competition begins at 10:30 a.m. The second session has yet to be announced.
Appeal-Democrat intern Olga Muñoz can be reached at 741-2400. You can e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.