Category Archives: Mah Jongg and Me

WISH WE WERE THERE…

Not only is Dottie on a wonderful Mexican vacation but she has managed to put together Mah Jongg games on the beach…and with the new card!

Dottie wrote: “I am on Playa Anclote, Rocio’s Restaurant in Coral de Risco, Punta de Mita, Mexico.  Second day of playing on the beach with the new card. This was the second game of the day….off to a good start! Do you like the new card?”

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MAH JONGG ON THE CENTRAL COAST…

From the Central Coast of California – not far from the majestic Hearst Castle – a wonderful message comes from our good friend, Donna, including photos, all about her Mah Jongg group (including the indomitable Boots Hersh!).

“You have asked for photos of groups playing MJ. I have a group of lovely ladies at my house on the second and fourth Wednesday of every month. We started out as a group of us who all belong to the same Corvette Club. I have added ladies from my past two classes and now we are three tables. Here is a group photo of us and I’m the one in the red shirt. Boots is on the far left as she is our “expert” having played “forever”. Everyone else has been playing less than 18 months but we have a great time. The other day there were 13 of us. We are on all on the Central Coast of CA and come from Lompoc, Santa Maria, and Grover Beach.

Hugs,

Donna”

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I DIGRESS…ONCE MORE

I love the photo of Toby and Gail so much that I had to keep this posting up for another day. I did receive a message from Gail and this is what she wrote:

“Ann: I DROVE that van for about 1,000 miles of our cross-country odyssey – I’d totally forgotten about the Ed Hardy connection so loved reading this! The van had a manual transmission with the gear stick on the column, and a clutch pedal so stiff you had to stand up to engage it. I learn to drive a manual on that van – talk about trial by fire – and we all somehow survived my learning curve. P.S. Toby and I are planning a big, as-yet undefined, adventure somewhere in the world in 2016 to celebrate our 50th anniversary of friendship!”

I wonder where Toby and Gail will go to celebrate their 50th year of a very wonderful friendship…any ideas for them?

Oh – one more thing…I received a request from Maggie in Virginia – see below this paragraph – can anyone help her? Please let me know if you are a teacher of American Mah Jongg in her area and I will connect you with her. Thanks so much!

“Hi Ann…in my quest to find a MahJongg teacher in the Tidewater area, I landed at your site. Do you reside in the Va Beach area?  My friends and I just started to play and are in dire need of a teacher. We took a beginner’s Chinese MahJongg class at the library but we are ready for the next level-and want to learn American. Do you know of someone who could teach us?

Thanks~!

Maggie”


 

My friend Elizabeth commented on yesterday’s posting, asking how it happened that Toby Salk and Gail Friedlander – two great friends and great Mah Jongg mavens – were driving to California in the car owned by Don Ed Hardy.

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Here’s what Toby had to say:

“So my friend Richie and I went to high school together (with Gail Friedlander). WAAAY before everyone and their grandmother had tattoos, Richie and his cousins were covered by Don Ed Hardy. Richie wound up buying his van. 

The better story:

Don Ed Hardy was speaking at Mills College in Oakland, CA. Richie and I had a date to hear his lecture. Richard got sick and so I went alone. Afterward, I waitied in line to say hello from Richie in a sea of half naked people touting their INK.  Well…when I said I was a friend of Richie Mandracchio, you would have thought I was the Queen of England. The seas parted and he called for his wife..HONEY! HONEY!!! THIS IS A FRIEND OF RICHIE’S!!! I was probably the ONLY person there sans tattoos! No one could figure out why Ed got so excited to see Pollyanna!”

I love this – Thanks to Toby for sharing this story. And now, here are those dear friends, Toby and Gail, showing off some of their Mah Jongg treasures:

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I wrote some of the lyrics from a Girl Scouts song the other day but, in honor of Toby and Gail, here it is again with yet another verse:

Make new friends

but keep the old.

One is silver

and the other’s gold.

A circle is round,

it has no end.

That’s how long

I want to be your friend.

I DIGRESS…

My friend Elizabeth commented on yesterday’s posting, asking how it happened that Toby Salk and Gail Friedlander – two great friends and great Mah Jongg mavens – were driving to California in the car owned by Don Ed Hardy.

don_ed_hardy_03

Here’s what Toby had to say:

“So my friend Richie and I went to high school together (with Gail Friedlander). WAAAY before everyone and their grandmother had tattoos, Richie and his cousins were covered by Don Ed Hardy. Richie wound up buying his van. 

The better story:

Don Ed Hardy was speaking at Mills College in Oakland, CA. Richie and I had a date to hear his lecture. Richard got sick and so I went alone. Afterward, I waitied in line to say hello from Richie in a sea of half naked people touting their INK.  Well…when I said I was a friend of Richie Mandracchio, you would have thought I was the Queen of England. The seas parted and he called for his wife..HONEY! HONEY!!! THIS IS A FRIEND OF RICHIE’S!!! I was probably the ONLY person there sans tattoos! No one could figure out why Ed got so excited to see Pollyanna!”

I love this – Thanks to Toby for sharing this story. And now, here are those dear friends, Toby and Gail, showing off some of their Mah Jongg treasures:

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I wrote some of the lyrics from a Girl Scouts song the other day but, in honor of Toby and Gail, here it is again with yet another verse:

Make new friends

but keep the old.

One is silver

and the other’s gold.

A circle is round,

it has no end.

That’s how long

I want to be your friend.

I COULDN’T BE PROUDER…

My class on Beginning Mah Jongg ended last week but we have started a new class called Supervised Play. Nine of my twelve students have signed up for these sessions. Today was the first Supervised Play class and not everyone was able to make it – but those that did come showed me that they are really beginning to understand the game. Although we didn’t get a lot of games into the two hour session, some really great hands were played (we are still working on the 2014 card…waiting for the new cards to arrive…don’t ask!).

Peggy had the first Mah Jongg of the day – all on her own – and I regret that I didn’t get a photo – but she really nailed it! Way to go, Peggy!

The next two games went to Minkie even though she kept saying that she didn’t have any tiles to make a hand.

Check out this proud winner…

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with her great winning 2468 hand of 22 44 444 666 8888

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Her next win was with a CONSECUTIVE RUN hand of 55 66 777 888 9999. Good job, Minkie!

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Brenda came really close with a very tough SINGLES AND PAIRS hand – bravo to her for trying one of those hands! Chris had to choose between two different hands and she also came very close to a win with an almost completed 369 hand.

I am so proud of these ladies that I could just burst!

WISH I COULD BE THERE…CONTINUED!

An update to yesterday’s posting…I heard from our dear friend Toby Salk who had a wonderful and very heartwarming story to add to that great photo. It reminded me of this short poem:

“Make new friends but keep the old… One is silver and the other gold.”

Here is what Toby wrote to me:

“Gail asked me to learn to play in the ’70s when I arrived in San Francisco. We had driven cross country with everything I owned in 4 cartons. The van we came in was owned by the renowned tattoo artist, Don Ed Hardy. When Gail asked me to learn she got a stubborn, flat out NO. BUT Gail can be more stubborn than me and here we are almost 40 years later, playing and teaching and still the best of friends.”

Thanks to Toby for sharing with us a great story about a great friendship – I’d love to hear from all of you about your long-lasting Mah Jongg friendships! 

Our friend Gail has shared a wonderful photo with us and based on what she said about Ruth and her cooking and baking skills, I wish I could be there right now! Gail – we know that whatever she serves will be fabulous but please tell us about her game play…a great cook and a great Mah Jongg player – that’s a real double threat!

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Gail wrote: “Here are some of my regular Monday group members, playing at the home of our red-shirted hostess Ruth. She has cooked and baked professionally for much of her life, so let me tell you – there is eager anticipation all around when she hosts.

 This Rottgames set is the one Toby bought for me 40+ years ago, and it wasn’t until last autumn that I finally overcame sentimental value and replaced the NMJL joker stickers with beautiful new ones.”

Don’t forget to share your Mah Jongg photos with me so I can post them on this blog!