Chess, Romance and Kathmandu - Maurice Ashley

Photo by Braden Moran

Chess, Romance and Kathmandu

The first African American Grand Master details his unorthodox education and the private chess match that defines him; a socialite trying to escape an unhappy marriage accidentally crashes the coronation of the king of Nepal; and an octogenarian makes an romantic connection with a man she worked with over a half a century before. Scroll down for the extras from this week's episode!

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Stories in this Episode

12:57
Slaying King George

by Maurice Ashley

Maurice describes his development as a chess player under the tutelage of The Black Bear School of Chess.

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14:03
Crashing the Coronation

by Bokara Legendre

A socialite trying to escape an unhappy marriage accidentally crashes the coronation of the king of Nepal. 

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16:04
The Case of the Curious Codes

by Cynthia Riggs

A woman reconnects with a man she hasn't seen in over fifty years.

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Extras From This Episode

Maurice Ashley

Maurice Ashley Extra

Maurice working with the junior high school chess team, the Raging Rooks, who won the National Championships in 1991. Photo by Charu Robinson.

Maurice Ashley Extra 2

Maurice playing blitz chess in 2001 with the Brothers at the Oxford Chess Club in Brooklyn. Photo by Daaim Shabazz.

Cynthia Riggs

Cynthia is in her golden years when she reconnects with a coworker from her youth and a romance blooms.

Behind The Stories: Cynthia Riggs at The Moth by mothstories

All photos courtesy Cynthia Riggs.

Cynthia Riggs Extra

Howie’s first package. The archival plastic contains Cynthia’s paper towel notes to Howie and his new message in code.

Cynthia Riggs Extra 2

The first paper towel note from Cynthia to Howie – April 1950.

Cynthia Riggs Extra 3

Cynthia and Dr. Howard Attebery meet after more than half a century.

Cynthia Riggs Extra 4

Cynthia’s wedding dress.

The music in this story