N-S vulnerable


{spade} J 9 5 4

{heart} Q 5

{diam} A K 7 4 3 2 {club} 9


{spade} Q 7 6

{heart} J 7 4

{diam} 10 9

{club} K 10 8 3 2


{spade} 8

{heart} K 6 3

{diam} J 8 6 5

{club} Q J 7 6 5


{spade} A K 10 3 2

{heart} A 10 9 8 2

{diam} Q

{club} A 4

The bidding: South West NorthEast 1 {spade} Pass2 {diam} Pass 2 {heart} Pass3 {spade} Pass 6 {spade} All Pass Opening lead: {diam} 10

"I finally got Minnie in for a checkup," Dr. Ed Fitch, the ophthalmologist who presides over my club, told me. "Her eyes aren't that bad for a woman of 82."

"What about her bifocals?" I asked. Minnie Bottoms' old spectacles make her mix up kings and jacks.

"She won't change them," Ed grumbled.

As today's declarer, Minnie took the queen of diamonds, cashed the ace of trumps and led a low trump. West, who happened to be Dr. Ed, took the queen, and Minnie played the jack from dummy -- thinking it was the king, of course.

"After we convinced her she hadn't won the trick, I led a club," Ed said. "Minnie won, drew trumps with dummy's nine, threw two hearts on the A-K of diamonds -- North had made it a point to mention that dummy had those cards -- and ruffed a diamond. She ruffed a club, threw two more hearts on the good diamonds and made the slam. If she cashes the A-K of trumps, she goes down."

Minnie may be fooling us. Her play was technically perfect.

Daily Question You hold:

{spade} 8 {heart} K 6 3 {diam} J 8 6 5 {club} Q J 7 6 5.

Your partner opens one spade, you respond 1NT and he next bids two hearts. The opponents pass. What do you say?

Answer: Pass. Your partner's change of suit at a minimum level is not forcing. He has fewer than 19 points, and game is almost impossible. You aren't obligated to bid, nor should you bid with such an unpromising hand. A bid of 2NT would suggest 10 good points and would invite game.(c)2005, Tribune Media Services