Wednesday 20 September 2017

Gadiel M. Szleifer

Gadiel SzleiferGadiel past away recently. I did not know him very well. I don't even know what the M. stands for, but he managed to leave a big impression on me. I have felt his loss keenly and cannot imagine how his close friends and family must be feeling. All I know is that I found it very comforting to read the comments, thoughts and stories of those who also knew him and so I am sharing what small bits I have. Gadiel was a very talented magic player who I met at a couple of tournaments and who I had the pleasure of once playing. He was 15 or 16 at the time and was far too good for his age. You didn't really notice that about him so much as he also seemed far older than he was. A combination of surety in his actions and composure gave him the air of a more experienced player that normally only comes with some age. He stopped playing competitive magic, pursuing other things in life. Had he put all his energies into the game he would have been one of the greats. Not that I am suggesting I think that he should have done that at all. Being good at something is a good reason to do it but from what I understand Gadiel was good at everything!

It feels corny to sat that Gadiel was the kind of person who was a winner even in defeat. However corny it feels accurate. Gadiel not only had the mental acuity to excel at magic he also had an ideal mindset and this was showcased in how he took losses. He was the complete gentleman applying blame in the only useful place - his choices. He didn't take losses out on his opponents. He didn't even seem to resent any good fortune they may had had against him. Instead he was incredibly self critical and would look to what he could do to have avoided the loss. I'm pretty sure every loss made him better and more focused. The opposite of going on tilt. He also had a silly hat... but I'm not sure that had any baring on his success. I am also not one to comment on poor choices of attire.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you very much for writing this about Gadiel, Nick. Igal and I were moved by your note.
    The "M" stands for Marcos.
    It was Gadiel's grandfather's name, whom he never got to meet because he died when I was 12 years old.
    Sorry for your loss.
    Ingrid Goobar-Szleifer (Gadiel's mom)