116 BROOKLYN EAGLE MAGAZINE, iff t I -1 SK&a&iS lit i . . i sfS5- Ay . . r ? y ly , f 5IMt - JfC:& w i- 1 I -J" S " J. J Dorothy Rice Sims and scene at the Sims estate, Dea!f iV. . D O 7 VV omen E xcel M 6nat Bridge? By Florence Shattuck ARE womefl better bridge players than men? Dorothy Rice Sims, queen of the bridge table her husband, P. Hal Sims, is concededly the king didnt hesitate a moment in answering: "No. Absolutely no! "Most women realize this, which is why a woman will not pick out a woman partner if she can avoid it; she will get a man partner Instead. And if any woman says she is a .better bridge player than most men look out ! she has mercenary motives." "But why, Dorothy; why aren't women better bridge players than men?" "Simply because they are too flighty. If they are good at contract at all, they get conceited. The average woman does not concentrate as much at bridge as a man. Besides, she hasn't the mathematical mind that the average bridge-playing man has. "If women are any good at all at contract, that is if they realize their potentialities as bridge players, they will take their ranking with other women, not with men. "The finest women bridge players are like the iinest women dancers they know how to follow, but not to lead." Out of the news there constantly come stories of husbands and wives fighting over the bridge table. Family spats that sometimes lead to the divorce courts. You've read of them where Mrs. A. trumped her husband's ace, or failed to lead the correct card when her husband had doubled a grand slam contract. "How can this be avoided?" "Ey husbands and wives not playing partners," Mrs. Sims answered with a smiie, "I speak from experience." "Should all women play bridge?" "Housewives, yes," said Mrs. Sims. "It's good for them; it gives them an interest in life. "Bridge, after all, is a mental diet. For professional people it is a marvelous stimulant; for clerks, no." Dorothy Rice Sims is the charming hostess who presides over the beautiful Sims estate at Deal, N. J., which reminds one of the castles of the feudal barons of medieval days. Their palatial home is the mecca for the younger players of contract, the capital of the bridge world. ' W0, ' ' Says Dorothy Sims. ft UILIU1IL J. UU XHgltlJi li til JLJ-i, tt' a Mathematical Mind" Constantly are the Simses entertaining. And Dorothy Rice Sims presides over her court, not in the conventional manner of the housewife at her country home, but in her own way. Humorously, somewhat erratically, yet at all times pleasantly. It is a well ordered house and Dorothy docs not have to worry about its ordering or running. The household machinery is such that an unexpected arrival of a dozen or so guests never upsets it. Dinners' are served at almost a moment's notice. Those who play bridge do; those who don't always find something else to occupy them. 1 Dorothy is sometimes among the bridge players; sometimes not. The same freedom which her guests enjoy she reserves also for herself. Suddenly, when the mood comes upon her, she will get up from the bridge table and lock herself in her studio, there to devote hours, often days, continuously, on her latest effort in sculpture or painting. She, is an amazing woman of diversified talent, unfettered by convention. When she was in her teens, shortly after the turn of the century, speed was beginning to interest the folks of the upper strata. The brougham had given way to horseless carriages and later motorcycles. Speed, speed was in the air. "And Dorothy Rice defied the doughty conventions of her day. She purchased a motorcycle and rode it up and down Riverside Drive, much to the chagrin of the dowagers of the day. More, she dressed in bloomers. Dowagers objected. Dorothy Rice tilted her chin and laughed, "I want to be a boy, anyway." Still a girl, she went to Paris to study sculpture and painting. Back in New York again, some time later, she dis- Dorothy Rice $im and her famout bridge-playing husband, P. . Hal Sims, uho are opponents, not partners, at a bridge table covered airplanes were the !?test thing in speed. S3 she took to ryin-, and in 1916 became the first amatsv.r licensed woman pilot in the United Si-tes. But that wasn't enough. This 100-pound willowy girl, with a flair for the unusual and bubbling with enthusiasm, decided she would write. And write she did. Without warning she wrote a novel, "Fog," a mystery thriller, then tucked it away in a trunk. Three years later, talking with a publisher, she mentioned the novel. The publisher insisted upon seeing it result, "Fog" appeared serially in a monthly magazine. In the bridge world, Dorot!y Rice Sims is perhaps best known as the inventor of the "psychic" bid or "sike." Poker had known it for years before, and called it a "bluff." The poker "bluff" consists of betting the limit on a pair of deuces or a four -card flush In the hope that thus you will be permitted to take the pot by default. The bridge "sike" consists of bidding the suit you haven't got (like hitting them where they ain't in baseball which is not a bluff at all) to prevent opponents from discovering that that's what they have. But the "sike" has its weakness, and Dorothy Sims was the first to discover it and warn against it. Unlike the poker bluff, you may deceive if the deception works not only your opponents, but also your partner. Or you may deceive the partner and not the opponents. Consequently a smart psychic bidder, though occasionally he might obtain a brilliant tand unusual result, would frequently discover that methodical, careful and non-psychic opponents would be the winners at the end. Dorothy Sims herself was the first to point that out, and the first to conclude that the "sike" was a double-edged weapon, to be used occasionally and with high restraint. That's Dorothy Sims, an outstanding woman in the world of bridge. Small of stature, vivid of temperament, she sits at a bridge table slumped down with something of the flapper air about her. She loves bridge. But she also is fond of her art and her writing. And when the conversation at Deal, some weekend, turns to the question, "Are women better bridge players than men?" which it often does, Dorothy Sims is there with her argument and her emphatic, "No! Absolutely nol"
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