You are now entering the Jewish Currents archive.
World champion bridge player Charles Goren, who popularized the game worldwide with books and a television show, was born to Russian Jewish immigrants in Philadelphia on this date in 1901. Goren, who got into the game when a college girlfriend laughed at his ineptness at bridge, became world champion at the Bermuda Bowl in 1950. His books, Winning Bridge Made Easy and Contract Bridge Complete, sold millions of copies, his daily bridge column appeared in nearly 300 newspapers, and he wrote a weekly column for Sports Illustrated and a monthly column for McCall’s. Between 1959 and 1964, he hosted a television program, Championship Bridge with Charles Goren. His point-count system became the basis for most bidding system. Goren died at age 90 in 1991. “[T]hat lovely, intelligent, desirable girl was laughing at me. . . . she had made me so ashamed that I went home that summer and practically memorized a book on bridge, thus inadvertently taking the first step toward a life of all play and no work.” —Charles Goren