Mah Jongg is not just a game. It has become a part of my life that allows me to entertain my Mah Jongg-playing friends, cook great meals to serve to them and test my mental skills during our game play (which, hopefully, is often).
Yesterday I posted about Crak Bam Dot Mah Jongg, the fabulous catalogue from the Project Mah Jongg exhibit currently on view at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco. Several readers of this column alerted me to the fact that the museum is all sold out of this great souvenir book but that it is currently available on the wonderful website, WhereThe WindsBlow, and being sold for a steal of a price at $39.75, including shipping!
Much thanks to Diane G and Katie A, two great friends to this blog, who alerted me to this great sale!
Recently I heard about a discussion concerning a book called Crak Bam Dot Mah Jongg by 2wice Arts Foundation that is up for sale on Amazon for around $160. Suddenly I realized what book they were discussing – it is the catalogue sold in the bookstores/gift shops of the museums that have shown the exhibit, Project Mah Jongg.
The other day I received a very sweet note from Michele Frizzell, a Mah Jongg teacher in Atlanta. She told me about a great venue for a talk and book signing once our Mah Jongg book comes out. I so appreciate her thoughtfulness and I thought those of you in Georgia might want to know more about her. So, here is some information on a great Mah Jongg teacher in the South!
I love this picture of Michele and the “bling” on the sign behind her is fabulous! Read on for specific information on all that Michele has to offer…
Ever since I started playing Mah Jongg, I have met the most wonderful people. Of course, if you are a reader of this blog then you know how much I love my Wednesday Mah Jongg group, the OMs (Original Mahjettes). But as soon as I started writing this blog – almost a year ago! – I have met (whether in person or over the Internet) so many more truly incredible people…people I feel as if I have known for years and with the hope that our friendship will continue for years to come.
One of those people is a woman by the name of Joy Hamilton. On Friday I received a very special gift from Joy, one that I will always cherish. First there was a lovely note that meant the world to me:
Dear Ann, Please accept this small gift as a thank-you for your fabulous blog. I hope it proves to be a Lucky Bamboo pusher for you during your Mah Jongg games. Wishing you all the best with your new book! Your Mah Jongg friend, Joy Hamilton.
After I dried the tears from my eyes (seriously! This really touched me!!) I opened the package and it was the beautiful bamboo pusher (or helping hand, as some people call them) that had been made by Joy’s husband. I am so honored by this special gift and the thoughtful woman who sent it to me. Here it is:
I wish you could see this in person because this picture does not do it justice. It is really a work of art and, as I said in the heading of this posting, I am so lucky…lucky to have all of you out there supporting this blog and sending me your kind words and thoughts, not to mention this fabulous gift!
You might remember that I have confessed to messing up concealed hands by not paying attention to the fact that they are concealed! The other day I told you that I was going to highlight those hands on the card…well, apparently I am not the only one who needs that colorful hint. Our friend Donna has highlighted in red the concealed hands on her NMJL card as you can see in the picture below – smart move! You know the saying: fool me once…
Here’s yet another informative and valuable Q&A from Gladys Grad, the Grand Master of American-Style Mah Jongg Tournaments:
Q. I was playing at a local tournament. Another player discarded my mahj tile. I said “mahj,” and I picked up the tile to put on my rack. I was declared “dead,” because the director said I had to expose my tiles before I was allowed to touch the discarded tile for my mah jongg. I am flummoxed. Is this a new tournament rule? Barbara
A. Your turn doesn’t legitimately begin until you touch the tile (whether it is to claim a discard or pick a tile from the wall when it is your turn); or you have claimed a tile and begun your exposure. In a sanctioned tournament, that tile was yours to claim and put on your rack, whether it was before or after your exposure. (You may wish to contact the NMJL for their rule in your social/home games).
That said…however….your particular tournament-director had designed a tournament according to her own set of “rules,” and therefore was entitled to put her own personal stamp on it (we can be a creative lot). It should be noted however, that when some tournament rules go too far afield from the official tournament rules, the players might not be entitled to receive Mah Jongg Master Points for their efforts.