As if my nation had pinned its medal hopes on me and I had lost, I hang my head, find myself down 3-0 in best-of-nine backgammon. I buoy at the sight of double fours bringing me wins in the next two games. But the only reason I'm here right now is that I lost the match in about five seconds after that. Barely had time to lecture my opponent on how to sit at the backgammon table, even a virtual one.
I'm leaning toward naming luck as one of the elemental forces of the universe. A profound shaper of character. Better than weather for turning a day around. Because it's luck (best of all), you never know where its boundaries are, and you have to consider your own. No point in getting too satisfied. Before long, things are going to change.
Part One: Bad Luck