Date: Tue, 4 Aug 1998 01:30:15 EDT
Subject: Mike Wise
You may recall that it was just six weeks ago, while Mike Wise was still in the hospital, that you emailed me Mike's request for information regarding points I had raised about the "Canadian WSC qualification process, so that he can study and respond to it."
I found it truly amazing that during his own overwhelming struggle, he would retain his focus on matters Scrabble, especially as they might affect Canada. But, then, that was his passion, and I have no doubts that his passion ameliorated some of his pain. I will miss the glint of that wonderful childlike eagerness and joy in his eyes.
Mike and I were comembers of the first appointed Advisory Board, when it met (8/87), with Alfred Butts also attending, to discuss what we had hoped would be the first World Championship in New York City in 1988. Mike's participation on the Board was always appreciated. I recall one AB meeting (NSC92, Atlanta) when future WSC slots were discussed. I had pointed out that if 20 could be allocated for North America, 18 of the top 20 were in the US at the time, also reflecting the 9:1 ratio of those countries' populations, and likely NSA membership rosters. Mike would not hear of that! He felt there should be at least 5 Canadians. Horse trading ensued, and rather than the 9:1 ratio, we settled on 4:1 (16 US, 4 CAN). And I am certain that the 2:1 (US 12, CAN 6) ratio at WSC97 was a function of Mike Wise's perseverance and personality. Us Yankees savored his honey and never knew what hit us! :) Yeah, I'm gonna miss that smooth talkin' man with the boyhood grin.