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By Tom Sloper

November 18, 2007
Column #344

American Mah-Jongg (2007 NMJL card). World Mahjong Competition madness is behind me, so - as promised - some Charleston exercises. What three tiles would you pass, and why? My thinking below.

1. One joker, and one pair (nines). Could go towards odds, consec., or 369. Precious very few other tiles that go with the nines to point in a particular direction. There are four easy disposables here - the evens and the W. Pick any three of those to pass.

2. Nice selection this time. Clearly everything is pointing to a high numbers hand, probably in odds, but possibly in consec. The winds can go for sure, and you don't need three flowers. ESF. It might give your neighbor ideas, but you'll be able to determine that very quickly and play accordingly.

3. Three pairs: twos and eights in dots, and another pair of twos. Clearly a sign to think evens. Pass any odds or honors.

4. The pair of fives has much interesting (if odd) company. Clearly a sign to think odds. Pass any evens or honors. You might keep the 6D if you like consec.

5. This would be a wonderful hand if you played Mahjong Competition Rules, but this ain't China. This is the good ol' U. S. of A., and this hand sucks. Big time. It's primarily low numbers, so I'd chuck the 7 and 9, then for the third passer I'd have to thimk. Either 2C or 4C, probably.

6. Finally, a joker! And wow, those dots. Might be good for S&P #2, but the joker'd have to go. Also good for 13579 #1 or consec. #1. The dragons can go, and 2D.

7. Two pairs: 5D R. Clearly points to consec. #6. Keep G, pass ones and E.

8. This is so terrible it makes me regret I ever took up mah-jongg in the first place. One pair and a buncha junk. I'd pass the winds and the 7B, hope something happens to "even" things out soon.


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© 2007 Tom Sloper. All rights reserved.