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 Post subject: Prostate problems in go?
Post #1 Posted: Sun Sep 25, 2022 4:30 am 
Oza

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How about that for a title? For go bums everywhere!

I have often been intrigued why so many top go (and chess) players appear to decline, though never by very much - just enough to disappear from the limelight. Is it physical? Is it psychological - made my fortune, don't care any more? Is it family life? Is it because younger players just get better every generation? It's probably a mixture of all these and other factors, though from my own experience I'd say it's the "I don't care any more" element that counts most. Sure, there is some physical loss, but experience (or acquired wisdom) can sometimes make up for that.

Given that frame of mind, you'll understand why I latched with great interest onto a series of games by the great Seo Pong-su, in which he played five games against Korea's current best players, adjusting the handicap after every game. The games were labelled as games of "fiery zeal" (yeol-hyeol 熱血), which is not a term you normally associate with a 69-year-old as Seo is! And certainly I don't, as I've met him and he had the clammiest handshake of anyone I've ever met. But he was once known as the Panther for his wild style, which, however, was also likened to weeds growing in a garden. And he was also known for his love of the most nerve-wracking fights. His title battles as the fans' favourite - the Korean boy who stayed at home - with Cho Hun-hyeon - the Korean who fans felt had defected to Japan - became the stuff of legend.

So much so, that these players barely rate a mention on L19, the site for Anti-Heroes, Anti-Legends, Anti-Humans - and (in desperation) prostate adverts :). The games in question were sponsored by the makers of Sawpalcosanol, a treatment for prostate care. It could have been worse, I suppose. It could have been haemorrhoid pills. A cynic (who - moi?) may assume the choice of a 69-year-old as the object of sponsorship was not coincidental, but Sawpalcosanol do also sponsor the Top Pros Tournament (a league) with all the best current players. It can maybe be seen as the Korean equivalent of the Kisei. So piles of praise for them!

The sponsorship in the Seo (pronounced something like Suh, BTW) series was not great even though it made each winner a millionaire: 3 million won for each winner, and 1 million for each loser. That's about US$2,000 for a win.

To state the result first: Seo scored 1-4, and was beaten down to a 3-stone handicap.

How come? The first game was held on 7 September, and the fifth on 13 September. This was cited (in retrospect) as too tight a schedule for the old man. The time limits were 30 minutes each, then three periods of 1-minute overtime. This seems to have been the biggest factor, at least in Seo's eyes. He said he got into overtime in the middle-game fighting and thereafter made an accumulation of mistakes in overtime.

The full results were:

Game 1 - Even (Seo as White) vs Kim Chi-seok. Seo lost.
Game 2 - Seo as -B- (Black, no komi) vs Shgin Min-chun. Seo lost.
Game 3 - 2 stones vs Kang Tong-yun. Seo WON!!.
Game 4 - Seo as -B- vs Pyeon Sang-il. Seo lost.
Game 5 - 2 stones vs Pak Cheong-hwan. Seo lost.

Seo apologised to his supporters for "not being able to produce games of good content" but said he would like the opportunity to try again.

(No computers were harmed in the making of this post.)


This post by John Fairbairn was liked by 4 people: CDavis7M, Elom0, Galation, Gomoto
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 Post subject: Re: Prostate problems in go?
Post #2 Posted: Sun Sep 25, 2022 5:01 am 
Gosei

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Is the problem deflationary rating systems? That used to be a common complaint amongst those who fought inflation by always putting £5 into the petrol tank. Of course that argument wouldn't get very far these days, and parking it in most places would at least double the costs. Mathematicians are doing there best work when when they are young, it's difficult to paint the ceilings when you get older, spine shrinks don't you know.
Are the game records available anywhere?

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 Post subject: Re: Prostate problems in go?
Post #3 Posted: Sun Sep 25, 2022 9:08 am 
Lives in gote

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I do think perhaps the first game should have been no Komi, otherwise it's too difficult.

Of course even in a match as special as this the Koreans have to have time limits like it's a Nightcore party.

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 Post subject: Re: Prostate problems in go?
Post #4 Posted: Sun Sep 25, 2022 9:29 am 
Judan

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While there are many cases of mathematicians doing their best at a young age, there are also counter-examples, such as Bill Spight and I. We have studied fields that had to be developed for decades before we could solve important research problems. I created and proved my first proposition to simplify my maths homework in year 11 of 13 at school. (*) My thus far major research, however, came 15 to 33 years later.

(*) The joke is that mathematicians are lazy. However, they work much harder to establish something due to which then they have enabled themselves (and everybody) to be lazy by simply applying the general to every specific case.

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 Post subject: Re: Prostate problems in go?
Post #5 Posted: Sun Sep 25, 2022 4:40 pm 
Dies with sente

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Javaness2 wrote:
Are the game records available anywhere?

Look at kifudepot, under 徐奉洙の熱血挑戦第1局 etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Prostate problems in go?
Post #6 Posted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 12:03 pm 
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SAWPALCOSANOL / 60 capsules / 1set, $94.88 from Kmall24 (never used them, not a recommendation). It contains sawpalmetto extract (Lauric acid) 115mg + Octacosanol 40mg.

Surely the claimed "Improved urinating speed" and "Urination frequency reduce" would be useful in giving the player a few extra minutes of board-time during the game. I wonder what sort of improvements one might expect with a double dose? (Not medical advice).

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 Post subject: Re: Prostate problems in go?
Post #7 Posted: Mon Sep 26, 2022 12:30 pm 
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I came here looking for a relationship between seating for a long time in seiza / chair /others, and prostate problems.

But I will have to wait.

:D

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 Post subject: Re: Prostate problems in go?
Post #8 Posted: Tue Sep 27, 2022 12:22 am 
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RobertJasiek wrote:
While there are many cases of mathematicians doing their best at a young age, there are also counter-examples...

For some more counterexamples, see https://mathoverflow.net/questions/1919 ... ir-best-wo

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