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By Tom Sloper
January 8, 2017

Column #664

American Mah Jongg (2016 NMJL card). Continuing the dance with It's A Wonderful Life's Buffalo gals, from Christmas. Our foursome's situation after the second left:

1.5. Player 1 has been hanging onto that dragon pair, shooting for Consec. #4 two ways. There are wasted tiles here (positioned right of the joker), but it would be a shame to trash 1C and 2C with so many low numbers. Pass F 6C S across.
2.5. That dragon pair is new. Only thing it suggests with these tiles is Consec. #4. 67C and 89D suggests Consec. #2, the most powerful hand on the card. Oddly, the only passers left are 7B 9B and... 3D. Pass across.
3.5. Mostly high numbers. Can pass lows and winds; how about... N W 4B. Across they go.
4.5. Somewhere in 369 land. Pass N W 2D across.

1.6. If player 1 thinks the low craks ought to be kept, she can pass N W, with a blind pass from player 4.
2.6. All three new tiles are junk; pass N W 2D.
3.6. Staying with high numbers, player 3 passes S 1D 2C right.
4.6. Stronger 369 now; pass 7B and blind pass two from player 3.

1.7. "I have two."
2.7. "I have three."
3.7. "Sure, I have two."
4.7. "One."

Players 1, 2, and 3 made no progress in the second Charleston. Player 4 got a lot more 369s, and now has a target: she's leaning towards 369 # 4.

As skillfully as the Buffalo gals danced, "a very interesting situation" eluded three of the four.

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See Tom Sloper's 2014 interview at

Need rules for American mah-jongg? Tom Sloper's book, The Red Dragon & The West Wind, is the most comprehensive book about the American game, including official rules not in the outdated official rulebook. AND see FAQ 19 for fine points of the American rules (and commonly misunderstood rules). AND get the official rulebook from the NMJL (see FAQ 3).

Where to order the yearly NMJL card: Read FAQ 7i.

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