Before I begin, apologies to my regular viewers. I was sick as a junkyard dog all last week, so I fell behind on my backgammon postings. Well, I’ll do two this week. I promise.
Now to something pretty cool. Mary Hickey is a backgammon champion.
And a stay at home mom.
Now, she’s also an author. Of a book on backgammon… well, not a book, a CD book.
“Chouette and More: The World’s First and Only Backgammon Sci-Fi Soap Opera” is the weird title to this CD slash book.
Hickey, of Kirkersville, New Jersey created the book on CD as a fun and informational resource for aspiring backgammon champs to learn about the strategies behind the board game — complete with colored diagrams and a storyline involving a mansion, a trip to Africa and a Blue Persian cat named Wilberforce.
Well, OK, that might seem a little over the top, but you know what? It freakin’ works.
She is a former chemical engineer, then stay at mom, now backgammon expert.
She was introduced to the game during a business trip in the late 1970s when she stumbled into a backgammon game at a restaurant in Houston.
“I never really thought I would be playing again,” Hickey told a reporter in New Jersey. “Then I found out more people play it than I thought.”
She rwon the U.S. Open backgammon tournament in San Francisco in May.
Hickey stays up to date on the game as much as possible by reading backgammon books and reviewing plays from online games, in addition to teaching backgammon lessons — she has six students — and writing books on the subject.
Her next competition is in October in Peoria, Ill.
If she could wish a few things for the world of backgammon, it would be more television coverage and increased participation by women and a younger age group, Hickey said.
“There’s not enough young players. We need more of the younger ones,” said Hickey.
To her, and people like me (I confess) backgammon is more than just a game or even a hobby: with its blend of logic and probability, she said, it’s a small reflection of life.
So check her out.