The Ancient Game of Go
What is Go? It's a 4,000 year old board game! You saw Russell Crowe play Go in the movie A Beautiful Mind as John Nash, the Nobel Prize-winning mathematician. Perhaps you saw Go in the cult film, PI, a fictional story about mathematicians. Go is also featured in the novels, "The Master of Go" by Yasunari Kawabata, another Nobel Prize winner, "Shibumi" by Trevanian, "Starborne" by Robert Silverberg, and "The Girl Who Played Go" by Shan Sa. Fans of Japanese anime cartoons and manga comics will enjoy the Hikaru No Go stories about a boy and his ghostly ancestor, a long dead master of Go, whose adventures revolve around playing the game.
Why will geocachers like this game?
One of the legends about the origin of Go says that its Chinese inventor intended the grid of intersecting lines (19x19) on the board to represent the Earth. The four corners are the four cardinal directions: north, south, east, and west, so a Go board is much like the GPS coordinate system. The lines can represent latitude and longitude, and the intersections are waypoints. For centuries, the military, government, and corporate leaders in China, Japan, and Korea have been playing Go as an exercise in long-range planning and strategy. See this article on Chinese strategy at the U.S. Army War College. Last, but not least, Alex Jarrett, founder of The Degree Confluence Project, once played Go at N43, W73 in Vermont. More recently, The Ancient Game of Go II geocache was created by a Go player in New Hampshire.
The Cache Box and Terrain
This geocache is a military surplus ammobox hidden in Westminster Park. The small, steep-sided hills, like the one you'll see at the cache site, are called drumlins. It will be impossible to find this cache under snow. Real geocachers will take the more challenging approach from Euclid Avenue. Get ready to pump those quads as you climb what the locals call A Thousand Steps! Students at Syracuse University in the early 70's called it the Stairway to Heaven. Governor Schwarzenegger says, "Wimpy, girly-man geocachers can drive up Westminster Avenue."
Do not add anything to the cache box - that includes travel bugs. This is a letterbox-hybrid geocache in a little-known city park. Let's reduce traffic to a minimum to keep the cache secure. Follow letterboxing tradition, and bring a rubberstamp to mark the logbook. Then use the Yin-Yang stamp and ink pad in the cache box to mark your own logbook. Please take a free copy of The Way to Go booklet to learn about the history of the game and its very simple rules. If you happen to take the last booklet in the cache box, state that in your log and I will add more. Consider visiting the local Go club. Several Syracuse Go players are also geocachers!
As the Japanese say when starting a new game of Go: "O negai shimasu!"