Black has a relatively easy time of it in the opening and by move 9 has his pieces comfortably placed. I decided not to get too fancy in the early middlegame and was thinking about quietly increasing the pressure on the d-pawn when White threw in the tactical surprise of 15. Nxd5. Black is objectively fine here, but the failure by both of us (apparently) to spot the key ...Nxe5 countermove - made possible by the unprotected White queen on d3 - is quite instructive. I had the mental assumption when both queens were on the d-file that opening the file would not do anything, only seeing the ...Nxe5 possibility once I had a rook on d8. This is a good example of how doing a general tactical status check can be a help (and should be a regular feature of one's thinking process). (I first saw this idea expressed in Understanding Chess Tactics by Martin Weteschnik.)
Despite missing the best reply, I manage to hang on and after the sequence is completed, regain equality. White nevertheless retained what initiative was left in the position and I soon felt under pressure again after he pushed in the center with 24. d5. Further inaccurate defending by Black leaves him with a somewhat scary-looking position as of move 29, although it was still objectively OK. Attempting to counterattack in the center, I play Rxe3, which would have lost had White taken the fleeting opportunity to play d6 that was presented by Black's overloaded pieces. Luckily for me, I immediately extricated myself and then was able to head for a setup that would force perpetual check.
My opponent didn't want to accept a draw, though, so decided to roll the dice with a rook exchange that lost him two pawns, leaving us with a R+P endgame featuring three Black kingside pawns versus two White kingside pawns. With time growing shorter, White got very aggressive and failed to do a CCT (checks, captures and threats) check on move 41, allowing White's rook to check and then pick up the b-pawn. The end came quickly afterwards.
My thanks to Tim for playing an interesting and strong game, which gave me a lot to look at during analysis.
For anyone else who wants to join the fun during the next cycle, the 2012 Double My Egg Nog FICS tournament still has a space available.