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This column contains an error that was reported by a reader on the Q&A Bulletin Board, (see Comments section). Reporting goofs is fun! Maybe you can be the first to report one and get a tip o' the Sloper hat!


By Tom Sloper
June 26, 2022

Column #765

American Mah Jongg (2022 NMJL card). Defend!

1. There's only one hand on the 2022 card that uses a pung of N: W-D #7, a concealed hand. Your best course of action is to call the player dead. If they deny being dead, then they will owe you 50 when you prove the point at the conclusion of the hand (if not before).

2. Clearly these are consecutive numbers, so this has to be a Consecutive Run hand. These exposures fit Consec #1, and also Consec #5, most powerful hand on the card. The hot tiles are 1C 2C 3C 6C. 1C and 2C are key tiles. If either 1C or 2C is dead on the table, then Consec #5 it is.

3. A couple of possibilities here. Scan the card looking for DDD, in families (card sections) where sevens can be used. The left pane is out, and so is the right pane. The possibilities are Consec #7 and Odds (13579) #5. The hot tiles are F 5D 6D 9D; 5D and 6D are key tiles.

4. Most likely a 369 hand, right? Specifically, 369 #6. But guess what, there's a reason why I call Consec #5 "the most powerful hand on the card." The hot tiles here are F 4C 5B 6C 9C. F and 6C are key.

5. Consecutive. Could be #3 (hot tiles F 4D 7D) or #5 (hot tiles 3D 4D). Flowers are key, but flowers make lousy key tiles since there are so many of them. You'd have to see seven of them dead on the table before you can eliminate Consec #3 from consideration.

6. Could be W-D #1 or W-D #6. The hot tiles are N S and... well... all numbers in all suits. Your only option is to scan the table to look for three Souths dead on the table, because the numbers hand is hard to defend against.

7. Consec #7. The hot tiles are 6B 7B (both key tiles) and F.

8. 2022 #2. The hot tiles are 2B and 2D.


Question or comment about this column? I often, um... intentionally... "miss" something; maybe you'll be the first one to spot it! Email and the discussion will be posted on the Mah-Jongg Q&A Bulletin Board. Hit me with your best shot!

Join Johni Levene's popular Facebook group, "Mah Jongg, That's It!" and Donna and Dara's newer group, "Mahjong Community for lively conversations about American mah-jongg and all things mah-jongg.

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

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, a good supplement to the League's official rulebook. AND see FAQ 19 for fine points of the American rules (and commonly misunderstood rules). AND every player should have a copy of Mah Jongg Made Easy, the official rulebook of the National Mah Jongg League (see FAQ 3 for info on mah-jongg books).

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