Best of CLO 08: #5
January 12, 2009
Mark Schein with his son, Aaron
The #5 article in the 2008 Best of Chess Life Online Competition is  A Parent's Perspective, Part I and II by Mark Schein.  Although the second part was the official nomination, many judges accounted for both. Judges complimented Mark on his fresh angle and detailed chronicle of accompanying his son Aaron to the 2008 National Elementary Championships. When not taking his son to chess tournaments, Mark is a Managing Director at York Capital Management in New York.

Schein's article marked a big change in scores, with a large margin between it and articles ranked 6th-10th. 
The Judges Sound Off
Read more about the judges here.

"Mark Schein was the revelation for me in this year's Best of CLO contest. I never thought I'd be too interested in the experience of  Elementary School Nationals from a parent's viewpoint, but I was taken in by Mark's candor and penchant for self-irony. With all the details he offered about what was happening, and what was happening in his mind, he created a piece that struck me as very generous towards the reader."-  IM Irina Krush

"The article immediately starts off great. Within moments, even someone who has no kids feels how it's like to be a chess parent. And then, sentence after sentence hits jackpot, all funny and setting the scene. Most importantly, they make you wanna read on, until almost the last sentence. Almost – in the end the author kind of 'slows down' a bit."-Peter Doggers

"I am not sure if this article is going to make the top 10 with other judges. However, I personally feel that even though the article might not be that long, I found it very entertaining, as it talks about scholastic chess, and about the things and thoughts kids go through. Also, it's great to  see a parent write an article... who is not insane about the child's improvements." -Alex Lenderman

"Thanks to a parent for offering his insights on nationals.  This should be required reading just prior to Supernationals in April.  The article could have finished in the top 5 by including just a couple of games."-Michael Aigner

"Nice deprecatory sense of humor and comes off as an update to Searching for Bobby Fischer’s portrayal of chess parents. They are so used to being kept off the floor, that they really don’t know what to do with themselves at major Open events. At Foxwoods one year, one game had parents standing behind their kid staring at the other parent." -Michael Atkins