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).
Call her dead every time she has 14 tiles. She’ll figure out they are on to her after you’ve called her dead a few times..
Easy one. Make a rule, no touching the discarded tiles unless you’re calling it. Also, hands should be behind your rack unless you are drawing a tile. Explain that it makes it hard to keep track of discards when they get rearranged a lot. IF this is happening, she may have the beginnings of dementia, it’s a very abnormal behavior. I say IF because it’s an extremely obvious thing to do, and a player “noticing” it kind of makes me suspicious that maybe it’s not really happening she just suspects it. It’s pretty hard to palm a tile put it on your rack and slip another off.
I think it is very kind of you ladies to consider that it could be dementia, but I don’t think dementia usually involves intentional deception like this. Dementia could explain her inability to recall discards without touching tiles, but palming tiles??? I agree that calling her dead when she has 14 and establishing a table rule that hands must be behind racks are the best bet. Every time I hear these stories of people cheating at MJ, it really makes me shake my head. I wonder if maybe it is some sort of mental illness like kleptomania where they cheat simply for the thrill of getting away with cheating.