Let’s hear it for Bill Warren and Al Takemoto, who finished first N/S Monday.

These two are trouble. They both have a natural instinct for cards, they take lessons together and they eat lunch together before the game to discuss their strategy.

Three winning keys to a good game. Plus, they have so much fun.

No, they don’t know everything yet. Who does?

But they are constantly learning, adopting some conventions and discarding others.

And laughing all the way home. These guys have been a real asset to our club.

Al is trying to learn the computer, and they both happily ring the bell for the Salvation Army and help in many other ways.

When we first started playing duplicate bridge almost 20 years ago, someone told us that players would be really nice to us until we started beating them.

Not true, not true.

We are all happy for Bill and Al’s success. Congratulations, gentlemen. Job well done.

Because there is such a thing as a personal best, I suppose there has to be such a thing as a personal worst.

If so, Tommy Franklin and I hit it Monday afternoon.

I won’t even mention our percentage, but it was the absolute nadir of my entire bridge experience.

The sad part is that I don’t even understand what we did that was so bad.

My cards were awful; I played only 2 out of 24 boards, but that’s no excuse.

You can win at duplicate with terrible cards.

If you defend well.

Obviously, we didn’t do that, either.

I couldn’t get out of that room fast enough. I left my terrific insulated bridge cup behind, and maybe my head, too.

Bridge can be a humbling experience. Blessed are the humble. Speaking of getting out of a room in a hurry, last Thursday Tommy Franklin and Joe Exum were having a game only a bit better than ours was Monday.

At the end of the next-to-the-last round, Joe got up, shook Tommy’s hand, told him that he had enjoyed it, and was out the door.

Unfortunately, there was one more round to go. Joe thought he was through.

He didn’t get far, though because Fran Jilcott called his cell phone, and he sheepishly returned to play the last round.

Bridge lessons are under way Wednesdays at the senior center. I have about eight or 10 beginners, and Sue has about 20 intermediate players.

We want everybody to know the pleasures and the frustration of duplicate bridge.

It is an absolutely fascinating game.

The bridge club is very grateful to the senior center for giving us time and space to teach these lessons.

Thursday’s winners: first, Sterling Jarrett and Shelby Bizzell; second, Sue Wilson and Billy Bizzell; third, Madelyn Percise and Doris Baddour; fourth, Al Takemoto and Bill Warren.

Monday’s results: N/S first, Bill Warren and Al Takemoto; second, Kaye Langston and Peggy Seegars; third, Bill Allgaier and Ed Wilson.

E/W first, Krishnaprasad and Selby Corbett; second, Sherry Owens and Shelby Bizzell; third, Sterling Jarrett and Sue Wilson. B — second, Linda Watson and Lib Braswell.