Getting Fischer on my show that first time, before the big match, was considered a major catch at the time. If anyone in the audience shared my image of what a chess genius probably looked like, Bobby’s entrance erased it.
Here was no Nabakovian homunculus. There appeared, somewhat disconcerted, a tall and handsome lad with football-player shoulders, impeccably suited, a little awkward of carriage and unsure how to negotiate the unfamiliarity of the set, the bright lights, the wearing of make-up, the band music, the hand-shaking and the thundering ovation — all at the same time. I had hoped to avoid the cliché “gangling,” but Bobby gangled. He sort of lurched into his chair.
The accompanying video, too, is not to be missed. From Was It Only a Game?