It’s Not Unusual – The Gee Chronicles
Sep 232002

E/W Vul
Dealer: East
Lead: D9

S K 9 4
H K Q 7 2
D K J 8 5 2
C 6
H 9 8 5
D A 7 6 4
C K 9 4 2
[W - E] a-yummy
S 10 7 3
H A J 10 6 4
D Q 10 3
S Q 8 6 5 2
H 3
D 9
C J 10 8 7 5 3

3 H

1 D

1 H


A few days ago my faithful correspondent O_Bones remarked on an innovation he christened the “unusual unusual notrump.” It appears he spoke too soon. Either that or I’m going to run out of names.

Grand un petit Gee reprise yesterday’s roles as South and North, respectively. An ordinary 1D first seat opener and 1H overcall finds our hero in difficulties. The sissified pass of a cowardly STCP™ can be rejected out of hand. A bold STCP™ might consider a negative double, but Chronicles readers know this is always wrong with a five-card major. 1S maybe, but then how to show the glorious clubs?

Gee’s answer is the unusual unusual notrump: 2NT, to show 5-5 or better in the unbid suits. The STCP™ would play 2NT here to show a balanced invitational hand with a heart stopper, but you know, small-time once, small-time forever. McLucky, West, must count himself even more fortunate than usual to hold an opening hand in fourth seat on this auction. He swallows his incredulity and musters a raise to 3H.

North knows somebody’s lying, but who? Holding KQxx of hearts he doubles, reasonably, instead of waiting around to find out. This is passed to Gee, who has the defensive tricks he promised, give or take two or three, and stands it.

Against 3HX Gee leads his stiff D9. Declarer makes four by going up with the DA and running the trump 9. He ducks the diamond. North wins the DK and returns his singleton club. Declarer wins and can still make by playing trump, conceding the two trump honors, a diamond and a spade. Instead he unaccountably plays another round of clubs. North ruffs, gives Gee a diamond ruff, and later comes to a spade and another trump trick. Down 1. A triumph for the unusual unusual notrump. I guess.

  One Response to “It’s Not Unusual”


    I can not believe the bidding on this hand. Its as if someone had deliberately went out of his way to lie to partner. There are actually ways to show the two unbid suits and a weak hand in this auction, and this definitely was not one of them.

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