THE URGENCY OF THE BID WHIST RACE
As an accomplished Spades player, you have no doubt experienced a situation during which you and your partner stretched to make an ambitious bid but got set. Having fallen behind on the scoreboard, you had to try to make up ground by resorting to risky, exotic gambits like “going nil” (an attempt to lose each and every round), the “blind six” bid for 120 points or the ol’ “10 for 200” bid in which you and your partner promise to win a whopping ten of the thirteen rounds for a “double” prize of 200 points. Meanwhile, your opponents were content to run out the clock by safely underbidding a seemingly endless series of hands, taking only enough risk to clear the low “sandbags” hurdle as they coasted to victory.
Just as there is no crying in baseball, there is no coasting in Bid Whist. As in most trump card games, each hand of Bid Whist is a race between the two partnerships to win the necessary number of the available tricks needed for the offensive team to “make” its contract or for the defensive team to “set” it. If a game of Spades can be analogized to a middle distance competition like a 1500m or a 5k run, Bid Whist is a sprint that requires sustained maximum exertion. Sometimes it is a long sprint like a 400m race. Often, it is even shorter like a 100m sprint. Either way, top-speed effort is required throughout the race.
This urgency is required because: (1) a partnership typically scores enough points to win the game by winning only two hands without getting set—and often by winning only one; (2) a partnership will typically lose enough points to lose the game if it gets set twice before winning a hand; and (3) in order to even earn the opportunity to play a hand and score (or lose) points, a team must bid aggressively in the auction and make a risky stretch bid. By way of comparison, in Spades, it is uncommon for a team to undertake the risky “10 for 200” challenge of bidding to win 10 tricks in a hand. In contrast, in Bid Whist, the minimum bid requires a team to commit to win at least 10 of the available tricks—in many instances, a team must commit to win 11, 12 or even all the tricks to win the auction.
But as risky as such aggressive bids may be, because of the key differences between Bid Whist and Spades discussed in our next installment, it is often even more risky to allow the other side to win the auction, play the hand and potentially score the points and win the game. So a team will often calculate that even if it gets set once, it can take advantage of unique Bid Whist innovations to score a knockout blow to equalize or even win the game on any given hand. This combination of forced high-risk/high-reward bidding and play amplifies the urgency and importance of each hand.
A common—and not unreasonable—lament of Spades players who find themselves on the wrong side of the scoreboard is that over the course of a game or series of games they “just didn’t get the cards” because the card gods cursed them by dealing them too few spades and too few high cards (i.e. Aces, Kings, Queens and Jacks). Seven key differences between Bid Whist and Spades address the “no spades/no high cards” situation, and contribute directly to the fast-paced, high-wire-with-no-safety-net dynamic that makes Bid Whist so enthralling. We will identify and discuss these differences in Part 3.
REGISTER NOW for the 2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion taking place August 28- September 1, 2014 in Orlando, Florida! For booking information visit here.
2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion
Saturday August 30th | 9a-5p
• Bid Whist Workshops & Free Play
• Cracker Barrel Step-Show
• Live Performances
Sunday August 31st | 12p-5p
• Bid Whist Tournament & Prizing
• Motown Gospel Revue’s
“Living the Gospel Roundtable” featuring Anita Wilson, Smokie Norful, Kierra Sheard & Vashawn Mitchel
Our Favorite Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion Moments!
1. Kandi Burruss participates in a discussion at the 2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.Source:Rance Elgin 1 of 20
2. The Jacksons brought down the house at the 2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.Source:Rance Elgin 2 of 20
3. Syleena Johnson signing autographs at the 2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.Source:Rance Elgin 3 of 20
4. Don Lemon leads a discussion at the 2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.Source:Rance Elgin 4 of 20
5. Joe was all smiles while signing autographs at the 2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.Source:Rance Elgin 5 of 20
6. Porsha Williams performs in the FREE expo at the 2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.Source:Rance Elgin 6 of 20
7. Singer Raheem Devaughn presents Trayvon Martin's mother Sybrina Fulton and Attorney Ben Crump with a portrait at the 2013 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.7 of 20
8. Eric Benet and Tom Joyner bust a move at the 2013 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.8 of 20
9. Tyrese, Ginuwine and Tank had the ladies swooning at the 2013 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion!9 of 20
10. The Tempations' performance was a night to remember at the 2014 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.Source:Rance Elgin 10 of 20
11. Johnny Gill catches some rays in the Florida sun at the 2012 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.Source:Rance Elgin 11 of 20
12. New Edition shows out at "White Night" at the 2012 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion!12 of 20
13. Fantasia brought down the house at the 2013 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion!13 of 20
14. Omarosa and Tisha Campbell represent at the 2012 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.14 of 20
15. A.J. Johnson brought fitness and fun to the 2012 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.15 of 20
16. The Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion guests always hava a ball!16 of 20
17. J, Anthony Brown always knows how to bring out the best in the Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion guests!17 of 20
18. Bow Wow and Jermaine Dupri reunited and it felt so good at the 2013 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion!18 of 20
19. Boyz II Men's Wanya Morris and Eric Benet kicked back at the Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion.19 of 20
20. Tamia and Eric Benet had every audience member that year wanting to fall in love!20 of 20