Q: You were nominated for your success on the McGill chess team during the recent CUCC, can you talk about that?
A: A bunch of schools [like] McMaster, University of Toronto, Waterloo, Queen’s, and a [few others] all came together to compete. There are four boards, and they’re ranked, so the first board plays against the first board, second against the second, et cetera. Whoever ends up with the most points wins, and whoever has the most team match [victories] wins the tournament. Fortunately, we were able to pull it off [this year].
Q: Does McGill usually host the CCUC, or does it rotate through different Canadian universities?
A: It rotates, and there’s also an interesting trend. The school that’s hosted [the tournament each year has] won it. It’s been [going] for four years in a row, and we’ve managed to keep that [trend] up.
Q: How big is the chess team?
A: We had three teams this year, and each team consists of four players.
Q: Do you have weekly meetings? How do you practice?
A: There’s a club that meets [and we play each other]. [There’s] a national ranking system, and as you play tournaments, you accumulate points. There [aren’t] really any tryouts or anything.
Q: What are the best and worst parts about chess?
A: [The best part is] meeting so many different people from so many different backgrounds who all come together just to play. You can immediately have something in common with them, and that’s pretty neat. Probably the worst part [is] losing. It’s pretty painful, takes some time to recover from.
Q: If you were a chess piece, which piece would you be and why?
A: I’d probably be the knight. You know, it can hop over other pieces, it can do a lot.
Q: What’s your least favourite sound in the world?
A: Probably the sound of chalk on a chalk board; really makes me cringe.
Q: If you could change one thing about McGill, what would it be and why?
A: I’d make the [cafeteria] have longer hours. There are always times, like at ten o’clock, when I’m starving, and I have to go to Provigo or Tims. I never plan ahead to get food from the [cafeteria], which is the logical thing to do.
Q: Your apartment is flooding and you only have time to save three things; what are they?
A: My computer because I basically live on it. My iPad—that’s similar to my computer, I spend 99.9 per cent of my time on it. And probably my radio; whenever I’m in my room or doing anything I always like to have some constant sound going.
Q: Who’s your hero?
A: I guess it’s kind of cliché, but I’d say Terry Fox, just because he was able to accomplish so much with such a big handicap. It’s always inspiring when you see somebody who had so many disadvantages, and was able to do so much. It’s motivating.
Q: What’s your lucky charm?
A: When I play chess, I always [go] with the same pen. If I win a game I keep the same one, and if I lose, I pick a new one.
Q: If you could trade lives with anyone for a day, who would it be, and what would you do?
A: Maybe Kobe Bryant. That seems like a fun lifestyle; and [it would be funny] to see how he would fit in in a McGill environment.
Q: Describe the McTavish flood in three words.
A: What the hell?