Some good news for dedicated chess idiots like me from Kathy Sierra, via The Atomic Patzer: it's never too late to become a Grandmaster.
"How many people think they've missed their opportunity to be a musician, or an expert golfer, or even a chess grand master because they didn't start when they were young? Or because they simply lacked natural talent?" asks Kathy. "Those people are (mostly) wrong." And since she found this out via "some brain scientists," there's obviously not much room for doubt either.
(On the other hand, I recall being determined once to learn Salsa Dancing, since a girl I met on a train decided upon a lesson as a first date. One fractured toe and a Thursday night in Casualty later, I vowed never to return, and just stick to Chess Club the week after.)