I love to think of myself as the Mahjongg Maverick. According to dictionary.com maverick has three definitions: (a) an unbranded calf (b) a lone dissenter or (c) an electro-optically guided U.S. air-to-ground tactical missle. Yep, that's me. I graze in the field, play mahjongg where others fear to tread, and, with laser-pointed accuracy choose a hand and win, win, win!
Okay, so I don't look like James Garner. And I did go pie on Friday night. (Isn't "go pie" a strange expression? Only a mahj player would know what it means. Experiment: Next time you buy a coffee and your server says "Have a nice day," say "I hope I don't go pie!" Report what s/he says.)
Today I played mahjongg in the back room of a game store - the kind that could double as a tattoo parlor. The store was decorated with figurines of aliens and wizards. Groups of kids with striped hair and sneakers clustered around computer screens. We played next door to a group of poker-playing Goth types, beneath photos of zombies. It was strange, but I broke my losing streak. Here's how:
I ended the charleston with FFF 222457J88G all bams. What to do, what to do? Seven-eight-green? Two-five-seven? Two-four-six-eight? Two-eight-green? Two-four-green-six-eight? four-five-six-seven-eight-green? What to do, what to do? Things moved quickly - two five bams went out, I picked another seven, called the flower, threw the four then picked four jokers in a row. I picked so many jokers that I threw out two 2s and an 8 but ended up with FFFF 2JJJ 8JJ8 G. Finally I picked the green when there were only three tiles left, but I got it. Better than Friday night when I was sitting naked with FFFF 1111 5555 exposed, the lone 3 dot on my rack, watching everyone break up their hand rather than throw to me. But, that's mahjongg.
We are all mavericks when we sit behind the rack. We may not have guns in our holsters, but we wear our gambling cowboy hats and love that lady luck. So we nosh a little - is that a crime?
This maverick will be on the move next month. I'll be playing at the Mahjongg Madness tournament in Ft. Lauderdale the weekend of April 29. I've added a tournament schedule to the site. If you know of a tournament coming up, let me know and I will post it. Meanwhile, I will be in the Hollywood, FL area the first two weeks in May. If you are looking for a player, my card is below. Have set, will travel.