Okay, well, now we've truly heard absolutely everything...
The world of professional chess has been rocked—rocked, we tell you!—by a cheating scandal. But not just any cheating scandal. A cheating scandal involving anal beads.
No, that's not a technical term for something chess-related, nor is it a euphemism. A chess champion is literally accused of cheating by receiving messages, in his butt, via remote-controlled anal beads.
Is it true? That remains to be seen, but boy howdy, has it stirred up drama.
It all began when Norwegian chess champion Magnus Carlsen, widely regarded as the best chess player in the world, lost to American Hans Niemann in a shock upset that ended Carlsen's 53-game win streak.
Shortly thereafter, Carlsen abruptly withdrew from the 2022 Sinquefield Cup.
Carlsen announced his withdrawal on Twitter with no explanation except for a video clip, frequently used as a meme in Europe, of former soccer star and manager of Italy's Roma soccer team José Mourinho saying “If I speak, I am in big trouble."
The lead up to Carlsen's mysterious withdrawal provided more clues. After beating Carlsen, Niemann attempted to publicly embarrass Carlsen, gloating about his win during a post-match interview in which he said:
“It must be embarrassing for the World Champion to lose to me. I feel bad for him!”
Then, the next match between the two was delayed 15 minutes after security stepped up their searches to ensure no one was cheating. Niemann was reportedly searched for a full 90 seconds on his way to the match.
It's at this point that Carlsen decided to withdraw. Japanese player Hikaru Nakamura attempted to fill in the blanks in Carlsen's cryptic decision during a Twitch stream in which he said he believes Carlsen withdrew because he thought Niemann was cheating.
Suddenly a rift ensued among the championship chess community as many figures came to Niemann's defense—until one player didn't. Eric "Chess Brah" Hansen claimed Niemann had been receiving signals via vibrating anal beads in his rectum, and that was how he beat Carlsen.
Of course it sounds ludicrous, and the theory may or may not have origins in chess-world fan fiction on Reddit (yes, that's real), but after it circulated online enough, many came to believe it.
The bizarre theory even made it to the eyeballs of Tesla CEO Elon Musk. In a since-deleted tweet, Musk repurposed a quote from German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer. Musk's tweet read:
“'Talent hits a target no one else can hit, genius hits a target no one can see (cause it’s in ur butt)' – Schopenhauer”
Who knows what the actual truth is, but the potent cocktail of chess, Elon Musk, and anal beads had certain sectors of Twitter in a tizzy.
For his part, Niemann mounted a passionate defense of himself.
Niemann: I Have NEVER Cheated Over The Board | Round 5youtu.be
Niemann said in an interview:
“I am not going to let Chess.com, I am not going to let Magnus Carlsen, I’m not going to let Hikaru Nakamura, the three arguably biggest entities in chess, simply slander my reputation.”
Sounds pretty much exactly like what a guy who cheats at chess with anal beads up his a** would say. 🙄