"The best part of the weekend was me getting the trophy and playing chess," said Matthew Carter, 8, seen clutching his trophy May 9 on MARTA between Five Points and Peachtree Center. Matthew was coming from the airport where he had just missed his plane back to New York City. "I was tired on the MARTA but I was not mad about missing my flight cause I got to miss school on Monday."
Matthew had flown down to Atlanta from New York City to compete in the Burt Lerner National Elementary Chess Championship which was held at Atlanta's Hyatt Regency over the weekend. He missed his flight, along with his chaperone for the flight Eddie Rosenstein, and Rosenstein's son who was also competing in the tournament. "We missed our flight because I am an idiot," said Rosenstein. "What the kids learn in chess is time management and I guess I have a lot to learn, I got us to the gate two minutes after the flight took off. "
Matthew won his trophy for finishing 17th in his division which included 274 competitors from around the country. "I like playing chess," he said a few days after the photo was taken, "because I win a lot." And what is the best opening move in a chess game according to Matthew? "3-4 for white and 3-6 for black cause you open your pawn into the center of the board and you own the center."
"That was probably the last picture of the trophy intact because a piece broke off when we got it home," said his mother Judith Carter, who took the bus 14 hours each way so that she could watch Matthew compete in the tournament, "but it was a nice Mother's Day because he got the trophy."