Ray Lee

Wolff at the door….

Bobby Wolff’s autobiography will be going to press just after the holidays, and shipping in time to launch at the February Regional in Las Vegas, where Bobby will be signing books.  It’s sure to raise some hackles — in fact, one of our proofreaders suggested we consider printing this book on asbestos paper!  Here’s a quick preview of some of the topics covered, chapter by chapter:




Chapter 1 Firing Ira 


Convincing Ira Corn that the Aces couldn’t succeed if he insisted on being a playing sponsor.


Chapter 2 Tracing My Addiction


Bobby Wolff’s early years and introduction to bridge through Oswald Jacoby and other greats


Chapter 3 Playing Pro Versus A Real Job


Wolff’s early bridge career — playing club pro, and playing on Charles Goren’s team


Chapter 4 The Birth of the Aces


How the team came into being, and how the personnel were selected


Chapter 5 The Death of the Aces and Thereafter


The great years of the Aces, and what happened after Ira Corn’s death


Chapter 6 Reflections


Some of the celebrities the Aces rubbed shoulders with… George Burns, Omar Sharif, and others


Chapter 7 ‘Serving Time’ on the Board


Behind the scenes politics — how the ACBL really works — inventing the Recorder system


Chapter 8 Blunders and Indiscretions


How the ACBL Board hired and fired an incompetent CEO


Chapter 9 The Agony of De-Feet 


The inside story of the ‘foot soldiers’, the Italian pair caught cheating in the 1975 world championships


Chapter 10 The Colossus of Rhodes Revisited! 


More skullduggery, this time in the 1996 championships in Rhodes


Chapter 11 The ACBL… Flirting with Disaster! 


How the ACBL Board almost gave $2 million to an unqualified stranger to ‘promote bridge’


Chapter 12 A Tale of Survivorship


The three women who shaped Wolff’s life


Chapter 13 The Special World of the WBF 


How Denis Howard was ousted as WBF president, how Wolff became president, the politics of world bridge, and the recent Shanghai affair involving the US Venice Cup team


Chapter 14 Losing Team Wins! 


The inside story of how the Canadian team was robbed in the Geneva world championship, losing a match they had actually won as a result of politics


Chapter 15 Looking Out for Number One


Professionalism, sharp practice, and outright cheating…


Chapter 16 Paying the Piper 


The Nickell team — the glory years, the break-up of the Hamman-Wolff partnership, and Wolff’s firing


Chapter 17 Weapons of Mass Destruction and Lesser Atrocities 


Full disclosure, system proliferation, and bizarre conventions


Chapter 18 Professionalism, Personal Agendas and Recusals 


The undue influence that professionals, politicians and sponsors wield over international team selection in the USA and elsewhere


Chapter 19 Even Idols Have Clay Feet


Edgar Kaplan, the Blue team, the Burgay Tapes affair, and an anonymous attempt to smear Wolff


Chapter 20 An Appeal to Remember


The strange, often nonsensical, appeals process reflected through a tortuous recent case that caused the ACBL Board to make new policy


Chapter 21 The “C” Word


Cheating — examples, cases, efforts to combat it


Chapter 22 Restoring Equity and Meting Out Punishment


Wolff as Appeals Chairman and National Recorder — more cheating cases and the infamous ‘Oh, shit!’ ruling.


Chapter 23 What’s to Become of America’s Talented Youth?


Heading up the USA Junior program in the early 90s, and what needs to be done to keep the game alive amongst the young.


Chapter 24 Where Do We Go from Here?


The big issues facing bridge today — money, sponsorship, professionalism, politics, the structure of the ACBL, cheating, systems development and control, the alert system, the handling of appeals… and more.





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