Throwback Thursday: Kane Webb’s ‘The Great Jude Acers’

The Great Jude Acers

by Kane Webb/Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
September 2, 2007

LITTLE ROCK — NEW ORLEANS “Still five dollars a game?” I ask the man in the red beret, his nose buried in the New York Times.

“Have a seat!” says Jude Acers, stuffing the Times under his folding table and straightening out the pieces on the chess boards. I sit across from him and pull out a ten. “Got change?”

“What do you think this is, sir, an ATM?” Jude says as he snatches the $10 bill and, rabbit out of a hat, produces a fin from underneath his magic table. Then he picks up a black chess piece and presents two closed fists. “Pick a hand.”

I pick the wrong hand. Jude goes first.

Jude Acers is the Chess King of Decatur Street. World famous. Perhaps the equal of Bobby Fischer, whom he’s played several times. Once on TV. If you don’t believe me, just ask Jude. He’ll confirm it all with, as he puts it, “my usual humility and modesty.”

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