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There’s a silent cadre of folks “in the know”, initiates in a secret pleasure. No one can tell who they are by looking at them, but it only takes a few words for them to find one another in a crowd. At least, that’s how it seems to the beginner. They’re players of the ancient Chinese game of go.

I was introduced to this game by a friend a month ago, and since then I seem to be running into Seattlites who are players all over the place. The game is simpler than chess, but boasts many millions more possible combinations of moves. No one has every made a computer program that can beat a skilled amateur, despite large cash prizes. Nevertheless, it is quite easy to learn.

Seattle has a healthy go community. The Seattle Go Center has regular events. Wednesday is Go night at Uwajimaya. There are also many players (like me), who love to sit in a quiet cafe and spend an hour ro so playing.

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