Chess on Ice

John Lanchester · Wall Street's Favourite Sport

To file in the department of 'Can this possibly be true?' – a piece from the New York Times about Wall Street's fascination with curling. That's right, curling, the mesmerically boring sport which is basically bowling on ice with heavy flat stones. After the closing bell in the markets, CNBC switches to showing the curling from Vancouver. Apparently the chilled-out boringness is why the moneymen like it. The guys on the Street say it is 'like chess on ice'.


  • 26 February 2010 at 7:14pm
    Dunnock says:
    In view of the guys' remarkable performance over the last few years I wonder which variant they like the best, hair curling or toe curling?

  • 26 February 2010 at 9:32pm
    Phil Edwards says:
    It's not bowling on ice, it's bowls on ice. Bowling is a quick hit, an instant win or lose with no judgment required. Bowls (like curling) is slow and careful, with results that only reveal themselves gradually. What do they know of bowls who only bowling know?

    (Can't see the 'chess' analogy, mind.)

  • 27 February 2010 at 9:33am
    Geoff Roberts says:
    The curlers shout and scream as the stone glides over the ice - behaviour very similar to the brokers earning their living, yelling at somebody off-picture somewhere.

  • 3 March 2010 at 1:47am
    bilejones says:
    Jeeze, you guys know nothing.
    Curling is the only sport in which men and women could compete on a level paying field: Size, strength and speed don't matter here.
    We know how Wall St. loves a level playing field.

  • 7 March 2010 at 9:10am
    Geoff Roberts says:
    Thanks for the insight, Bilejones. That's why the curlers (?) all look like brokers in mufti, is it?

  • 8 March 2010 at 2:04am
    adam_burke says:
    The angelic visages of the successful Japanese women's team do not seem irrelevant to this phenomenon ...

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