BIL Members have their say in 2011

Extracts from Notes of Appreciation

I would like also to complement you on the excellent program you have developed and to wish you continued success in the future.My mentor is a wonderful teacher and this has been my most valuable and enjoyable experience with the game I love.

I dont know how you do it all.  The bil area on bbo is such a benefit with the lessons, and the library is great reference.
And the mentoring is such a value. 

I have written this in the name of all the members of the club, who I’m sure share my view.
 For me magic is not making objects disappear, conjuring up spirits, or engaging in sorcery, but the communion of kindred minds united by a common interest, enthusiasm, and tenacity. Magic is what I’ve found in the BIL.There is a special spirit of keen complicity between the teachers, the organizers, the mentors on one hand- patient, understanding, persevering, unselfish and always willing to solve the myriad problems that recur, and the members who look up to them for guidance on the other. Our bridge pundits’ willingness to impart knowledge is legendary to all.
Then there is our modest megastar who has worked so diligently to enhance this spirit of friendly competitiveness, good sportsmanship, and intense learning. Indeed, if anyone has had the privilege to “converse” with Maureen, he or she will immediately realize that she is the BILboard, displaying all these qualities, the inspiration for the magic that can be found here, a lifetime tenure to a purpose. Thank you, Maureen, for all you have given us.

You and BIL are great! Billies are so fortunate to have this club! Thankyou for your dedication to "good bridging"!! 

thank you for initiating this wonderful concept

I have learned soooooo much on the BIL.  Thankyou for all your hard work.

You and the team put together an awesome event - I hope you all know how much it, and the things you do mean to many people

The experience of playing many hands was a good one.  Taking a quick look at the movie after the hand was played, I saw the many ways other people bid and scored, and thought I would try some of their strategies the next time.  Also, it gave me a chance to be a little more aggressive without fear of reprisals from my pard, (In the BIL we are all here to learn, no need to say “sorry” when we make a mistake- after all that’s the way one learns).

what made the Marathon so special for me: it represented the spirit of the Lounge, as did the special events team and you of course, the originator of the idea of the Safe Lounge, the giving to others unselfishly, for people to play and learn and above all to enjoy themselves.

want to thank you all so much at BIL headquarters. I don't know where to begin to say how wonderful this year, and especially the Marathon 11 event, have been.  As a newbie to bridge last December, just learning how to count HCPs, BIL has helped me through lessons, mentoring, GIB play, countless answering of my e-mails when I was frustrated, hurt, and often, just plain joyful about the entire experience.

I am on Bridge 202 now with Howard and still feel daily as though the basics slip through my fingers in a clutch. And I mean basics.  Like counting five spades as six, opening a weak two in Spades, then meekly asking for an undo, as I did last night,  admitting my miscount and, most graciously, granted the undo, with "np."  Then, last night, with Roberta as my partner, I forget what she taught me!  She was so kind in explaining what the next level bid meant

The biggest effect the Marathon 11 has had on my life is that it has brought me into playing with live people real-time.I would love to get this message out to the many beginners who, like me, sit on the sidelines, kibbing, afraid to jump into a BIL tourney or team match.  Being new at anything can be a humbling experience, but oh so worth it to take the steps to improve, to be challenged, and to have such great enjoyment along the way 

You have built an excellent playground.  You put in the grass and put up the swings and built the sandboxes and provided a safe place in the city for the kids to play. You do your best to provide playground monitors and you organize fun activities to keep the kids occupied,  You keep the grass cut, you pick up the litter, you plant flowers.  You have the best park in the entire city.
I have a pretty good idea of how much time you devote to this park and maintaining it.  I would have reached a point long ago where I would have sold the park and taken a vacation in Tahiti.  But you are more patient than I and certainly more devoted than I.  I admire that.  More than you know.

I would like also to complement you on the excellent program you have developed and to wish you continued success in the future.

You and the BIL are the best!

Thank you for all of your hard work, for now and all the other good things that you do.

you are referred to as the “First Lady” of the BIL.  It is a perfect recognition.  So many of us appreciate your amazing effort, accomplishment, and vision.

Many thanks to you for the countless hours and effort you've spent making BIL what it is today....the best place for anyone and everyone to enjoy and learn and play bridge.  You've done a super job and we all appreciate you and your help!!!!

a big thank you for this wonderful site and humungous contribution to BI players like me who are struggling to get to the next level.

Maureen, this was just wonderful. You're a legend in your time. So grateful for the opportunity

your efforts are beyond belief!

you have so much on your shoulders all the time.  The Bil is so full of activities, tournaments, lessons,etc. that I wonder how you keep your head on straight.  Thank you for your efforts in trying to help us become better bridge players.  You are truly a wonderful person and must have many stars in heaven

Re Ask a Question: Thank you very much for running such a wonderful website -These lessons are wonderul

Thanks for all you do for BIL!!!!  You're amazing!  You've done a fantastic job

My thanks to you and all you do.  I can tell that I'm going to love the BIL

I have played mostly with robots because of a couple of bad experiences with rude people online.  BIL is such a nice place to play and learn….” 

There are not words that can adequately express appreciation for all the time, effort and work YOU have done for BIL. We (all the members) do not thank you enough, but we are truly very appreciative of BIL and are very cognizant of who is at the heart of it. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!

I wish to express my appreciate for the mentor, humboldt2 that you assigned me.
She was patient in her mentoring and thorough in explaining mistakes and alternatives.
I attempted to improve certain areas of my game and she helped me do so. Site is unbelievable providing a great opportunity for players to improve their game

The gentle competitiveness of the BIL is a great place to learn and challenge oneself to go further and having many people dedicate their time and efforts to providing this environment and tournament, is wonderful

Many thanks Maureen for giving us all the wonderful opportunities that BIL has to offer!

I enjoyed playing and know it is a lot of work to put together the people and the support teams for all we do in the Bil,

I know that you and the BIL are a fantastic opportunity for aspiring bridge players, hence my lifetime membership.  I have referred numerous players to the BIL and have recommended it as the only place to learn.  Your classes to members are a part of a much larger family of wonderful, generous, helpful, and giving members and honorary members.

The BIL is the best!! Thank you Maureen for making it happen.

I do appreciate what you’ve accomplished in setting up and developing the BIL. Bridge 101 was a great course

I joined the BIL (and BBO) about 6 months ago because a friend recomended it.  I didn't use it much until recently.  Dumb Me!  I have spent time in both lately and I am just blown away with all it has to offer.  I cannot believe I took so long to appreciate what all of you are doing for us!  It is just wonderful to be able to attend these free classes and  play with others at my skill level.  The classes are mind boggeling.  Thank you, and all the volunteers who give us a world class place to learn and play.  I may never be an expert, but it won't be because you and the mentors didn't try - but I am happy to stay in the BIL and learn.

Thank you for all you and your friends do. I enjoy participating in the general playing. It is great.

Played a little in the free tourney for beginners tonight. I was so nervous but it has built my confidence a little. Must go to the quiz now!!!!

Thanks! Everything's working fine. I'll look forward to another two years of your wonderful site. You're really bringing pleasure into a lot of people's lives.

Thanks again, we both enjoy the BIL so much and you have done a wonderful job in making it possible. 

The first year went sooooo fast and I have learned so much.  Playing with the BIL people is a joy.  The teachers are always so accomplished and friendly.  BIL has helped me with my bidding, which still needs work, and also with confidence in the game.  I'm now playing with my mother's bridge group and I'm actually on par with most of the ladies who have been playing for years (non-professionally).  I know I have a lot to learn and that there will be pitfalls along the way but BIL is a great place to learn, make internet friends, and you were a genius to start it.

Many thanks from me and I'm sure from countless others who have benefitted from your services.

You and your team continue to do wonders with the BIL.  I wish everyone knew how valuable this site is.  I tell all of my bridge friends about it.  And, the movies that are now in the Library... I LOVE IT! Thanks so much for all you do.

Thanks for all the good things I learn about bridge in the Beginner-Intermediate Library. 

just wanted to say thank you for setting up BIL. I recently returned to bridge after 5 years away. you have great resources here and on the website. Got referred ... to BIL my first night back.

What you do is amazing, and I love being able to sit in on many of the lessons given by the many wonderful teachers you have!

we are lucky you are at bilbridge!

I love BIL.  Am taking the beginner courses and have met the nicest people, both teachers and fellow students.  Thanks so much for all you do!

I met a beginner who seems to know so much more so quickly because of you guys - awesome job !

Thank you for your hard work...... I have learnt so much from the BIL teaching, if it was not for the BIL I would of quit Bridge, because playing is not's learning bad habits...

Bridge Movie Catalogs -Again a superhuman effort to help the Billies!! It's very appreciated and many thanks to all 
involved!! Amazing fellow beings--

thanks again for the soooooo good BIL  and the practice sessions; they are GREAT too

I have no words to thank you for this extraordinary opportunity you gave me of having a mentor these months. And also for your patience and kindness in finding the most suitable one for me. 

With her I found a very comfortable place. She has a lot of sense of humour and an easy way. It helped me to connect with the joy and fun side of the game. (You know, when we strive to learn-learn-learn sometimes we become insecure and frightened with the never reaching goal.)

The classes were mostly based on bidding and playing with random hands. Then she would point out every aspect that needed correction or consideration. She has a very nice way of correcting, it never makes you feel hopeless or numb. As a result I feel more confident now, which helps me to bid, play and enjoy a lot better.  
During this time I often mailed her with questions on hands I played. She would always answer with a full explanation very enlightening. She's been great.

So again thanks Maureen. Your efforts make this world a better place for sure :)   And the BIL is far the best place in BBO.

If it were not for you and BIL I would never have tested the waters. My greatesr thanks and admiration

Thank you so much for all you do . The BIL is far more wonderful than I expected.

Again a suoer human effort to help the BILlies. It's very appreciated and thanks to all involved. Amazing fellow beings

Thank you so much for all your efforts and all those players gotten to help out with lessons, tourneys, practice sessions, calendar etc.

In case I haven’t told you lately…You are an amazing lady with worldwide admiration and appreciation for your tireless efforts on behalf of us bridge wanna-bees

I went on Al Fresco café and read your welcome letter, wanted to tell you how inspired I was. And the BIL is wonderful for lack of a better word. I joined long ago but just became active recently and am  in awe of the teachers, bilhosts, players and you for providing this. I want to stay a billie forever, and probably will the way I play

You did a magnificant service when you set up BIL for beginner and intermediate players. The activities and lessons that it offers is amazing.

Did you know you are AMAZING ? I do not know how you juggle so many balls in the air at once ... May God continue to bless you in all you do., just as you bless all of us

Thank you and all the people who make the BIL such a special place

Congrats to you and your [people for all the excellent things that are going on in the BIL

unable to participate in BIL's Birthday Party. A shame, really, since BIL is doing a very important job.

You and your other BIL'ers do a great job for our new players.

Your devotion is unhearlded and we are all very appreciative of all you do to help. 

having the oportunity to belong to BBO and after, to BIL, is the best thing that had happens to me. So I thank you and I wish you the best that God can give you!

Aug 28 2011 FRED: Thank your Maureen for the great things you do for BBO and for bridge. You have made the bridge world a better place to live :)

we are very lucky to hve such quality teaching and discussion available in BIL!!

TY all those involved with BIL

A day without BIL is a day without sunshine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

TY to all the BIL volunteers !H!H!H This has been a wonderful experience.

just wonderful 'bettet than a week at the sea

It is because of Maureen that we all have this opportunites to learn bridge and to love the game - thanks very much Hallway

I wanted to thank you . The BIL has meant so much to me, with mentoring, group lessons, and especially friendships over the bridge table with folks from all over the world. I started playing two years ago and discovered BBO, then BIL and now it is an important part of most of my days! I especially appreciate the dedication that you have provided to making this lounge a gracious and educational place to learn and play. I join so many in saying again thank you so very much.

Dear Maureen BIL is your DOING You are doing the JOB BRAVO

Thank you, Maureen, for the BIL and your foresight, commitment and ensuring its success.  I am thankful for the riches the BIL provides in my life.

Thank you for all you do to make the BIL so special!

i just want to say "thank you" for all that you do for bils.  yesterday i had my first private lesson with angervea and she was wonderful.  today bil is loaded with great  people willing to spend their time to help us develope our game. Thanks again, this time to everyone that makes bil possible. :)

.  I am just starting on this bridge road but your site has been a great help, 1st with Sue's lessons, MemeX familiarity with site and finding me a mentor so soon.  I also found Shelagh Paulsson for private instr. through your site and she has been a great help. Hope to continue this journey for a long time.

Thanks Maureen, for another fun year of learning to play bridge! 

The Beginning Bridge Program is an amazing  concept, AND the quality of teaching is really unbelievable.  THANK YOU, all for the fantastic service to the learners of this great game.  You've given us quite a superb send off into the wonderful world of bridge. With grateful hearts, we thank each of you. We look forward to years of new friendships and challenges at the  bridge table

Thank you Maureen for providing us with the wonderful opportunities offered in in the BIL and your caring/interest in each and every one of us!!:)

Thank YOU for the BIL!  Your creation, the BIL, and the friends I’ve made have become such an important priority of my life. 

Thank you for all BIL does to make bridge a fun and exciting game.

Am so impressed with the BIL and the great job u r doing.

It has been an honor to payback you and the BIL for all the wonderful things you do.

Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity of having a mentor for these last few months.  It has been wonderful and I have learnt heaps.
Thank you for organising these lessons as I do live in a isolated area so there are no teachers available. have just loved it.

..but most of all most heartfelt thanks for having started the club and having accepted me. Lots of kind, patient and, obviously bridge expert, people. I have been playing this game off and on for some time (unfortunately I do not have as much time as I would like to devote to it) and I am totally "self taught" but I feel I am really learning a lot and having fun and meeting nice people, which is always comforting!

We are so grateful for having BIL and so many wonderful opportunities to learn and improve at this game.  We've made great friends with those we've shared classes.  And the instructors have been amazing with their caring and encouragement long after their classes were finished.
Thank you so much for making it possible for all this to happen!

I was given a mentor and I just want to let you know that he is outstanding.
I am so happy to be able to work with him.
Thank you so much. It is a wonderful experience for me.

Just read my BIL Bulletin, and you have again come through for us with your great article and pictures on KIA!  It is amazing that all of this hard work, energy and good will come from people like you  and all the others on BBO/BIL for we learners...and I am still a learner...and probably will always thank all the wonderful people I have met through this great site

Just wanted to let you know that that I had some very pleased bridge players at one of my tables last night – pleased with the BIL. They wanted me to tell you how much they enjoy the practice sessions and that they always enjoy playing in the BIL...They said it was a brilliant idea and asked me to be sure to pass these comments on o you! I agree with their comments, of course! They said they always find nice people in the BIL!

This is proving to be a great resource for me!  Thanks so much for the superb work you do for bridge playing!

It was fun to work and play at the BIL's Birthday Party. Everyone was in a good mood, must have been the champagne and caviar lol, Lots of birthday wishes sent to one and all, and the mixture of students, world class, mentors and just our BILlies, was enough to make your heart go thump thump. Wonderful idea, wonderful time. Thanks.

What a wonderful team you all are - thank you so much for all the resources you provide and all your hard work

Thanks so very much for all your time and wonderful work for BIL !!!

Just want to say how much I enjoy bilbridge.  You have done a wonderful job.  It took me a while to learn how to use the lin movies but with the last update it is so much easier.  Either the udate made it easier or I learned how to use it better.  You do a great job. 

Maureen your accomplishments are amazing !  The beat goes on----BIL gets better and better!

thank you so much for all  that you do for bridge players.  the bil is a wonderful place and i look forward to everything there in the future. 

BIL is GREAT (yes, in caps) and everyone is always soooooooooo nice and helpful. It is the best "place" to learn.

 I have recently started on the BBO and BIL, kibitzing some sessions and, not very successfully. trying to play (I am a Novice). That was disastrous and very embarrassing for me as I really do not know enough to play at a table.  Anyway, in a panic several times and ready to leave my seat, someone offered to help me out .... I cannot tell you how she helped me through some difficult moments, several times.  Even to the point of taking me and another Beginner to a Teaching Table ... there, it was relaxed and I, for the first time, relaxed and learned  something!  The other Beginner player who knows a bit more than me also appreciated and enjoyed the time spent with herf. Best regards from a grateful Bridge Learner

I’m not sure how long I’ve been a BIL member, but I have certainly enjoyed it and learned one heck of a lot!  So, thank you very much for having created the club and all its contents and activities! Many kudos!

I do want you to know how much I love BIL and love all the players who play there.  Take care of yourself  you are IRREPLACEABLE  

Sometimes I have to pinch myself when I think about how fortunate we are to have you and your wonderful BIL. The movies now available are extraordinary.  The content, the calibre of the teachers and the talents of the moviemakers, particularly the wonderful Kia . I’ve discovered a whole new world on BBO, and while I may never be much of a bridge player, I love the lessons given by your dedicated team of teachers.  There are SO many wonderful volunteers.  I have no idea where they find the time, but imagine that they are giving back something of what they’ve received themselves from this wonderful game.

Thank you for all you do for us and other players in the BIL. We all have such fun playing in these matches as well as in the BIL in general. It is a really special place to learn and enjoy the game!

Your web site has provided a wealth of learning, expertise  and research for all of us who want to play a fine game of bridge.
There are  not enough words of thanks to give you. If I could find them I'd multiply them  countlessly. I am entirely grateful for what you have done for us who live this game.