Betting and Mah Jongg have always gone Hand in Hand…no pun intended! When Mah Jongg is “five-handed,” the fifth player can become a Bettor. This fifth player can rotate in to play games, and, when sitting out, can act as a Bettor and participate by choosing the player they think will win the upcoming game. Having a Bettor adds another dimension and extra excitement to the game of Mah Jongg. Betting allows the fifth player to be a part of the game, albeit a silent observer. T
Attempt a Singles & Pairs Hand YES, YOU CAN go for a Hand in the category of Singles & Pairs (S&P)!! If a player finds related Single tiles and/or Pairs of tiles and collects more of these related tiles during the Charleston, you may choose to challenge yourself and venture to a Hand in the Closed Singles and Pairs category. These Hands are ALL CONCEALED Hands, but each can easily convert to other Hands in other sections on the playing NMJL Card. Converting Singles & Pairs Ha
April is a time for new Mah Jongg Beginnings! The arrival of the 2021 playing card brings much excitement and eagerness to players of all skill levels. I survey the card's categories and dissect each and every Hand with a fine tooth comb. I analyze the changes, additions and deletions that are made to the playing card by the National Mah Jongg League. Did you know there are 67 Hands as written on the card? However, due to the myriad combinations of suits from which to choo
I was delighted to once again be a guest Mah Jongg Instructor interviewed on Fern Bernstein's podcast entitled, "Mah Jongg Mondays!" We had an interesting and detailed conversation about the Charleston that included passing tips and strategies as well. Fern's podcast topics are all related to Mah Jongg and she is a wonderful host! I enjoy tuning in on different episodes during each of my many walks. The following are some of the subjects we discussed during the "Charleston
Decoding the Mah Jongg Playing Card The Mah Jongg playing card is issued each year at the end of March or early April (after the Chinese New Year) and every player will need to purchase a current playing card. American Mah Jongg players look forward with much excitement and enthusiasm for the new playing card to arrive! I pre order playing cards through the NMJL website at www.nationalmahjonggleague.org. You may also choose to purchase a playing card through an organization
Introducing... The Mah Jongg Charleston Assist Created BY a Mah Jongg player & instructor… FOR Mah Jongg players & instructors! During the many years I have been teaching Mah Jongg, I have noticed that many players seem to get lost in the Charleston! The Mah Jongg Charleston Assist (MJCA) is a device to be used during the Charleston of American Mah Jongg game play and can be used alongside all American Mah Jongg sets. The MJCA takes the guesswork out of Passing and reminds al
Mah Jongg is not only a challenging, creative, complex, and strategic game, but also, and importantly, it is a social experience. Whether you are a Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced player, and whether your group plays more competitively or more casually, kindness goes a long way to making the Maj play environment enjoyable. Many of the ideas for friendly protocol suggested below are not rules of play but are suggestions to foster a friendly and supportive milieu for playin
Right-Across-Left, second Left-Across-Right – All six passes of the Charleston MUST each contain THREE tiles. The seventh optional pass is decided between players sitting across from one other and may include zero, one, two, or three tiles, agreed upon for the lesser amount. Any player may independently choose to Blind Pass only on the FIRST LEFT or LAST RIGHT pass of the Charleston. Tom Sloper in his book entitled, The Red Dragon & The West Wind, defines the American Mah Jon
Every MahJongg tile that is discarded during play must be clearly, verbally named. Six Crak, Four Bam, Seven Dot, West, or Green are just a few examples of tile names. The following tiles have unique names that you must remember: ~ 1 Bam may be called “1 Bam”, but I have also heard this tile named “Bam Bird” ~ Flower tiles are simply called “Flower” even though in many Maj sets the Flower tiles also have numbers or seasons on the tiles. I teach my students to disregard the F
May I introduce you to the frequently forgotten category on the bottom right side of every Mah Jongg playing card called “Singles & Pairs”!! ~ these Hands are all Closed/Concealed: Hands in which NO tiles may be called during play except for the final 14th tile for Mah Jongg. ~ Jokers may NOT be used in any way in any of these Hands ~ this is the most challenging category ~ this is the most rewarding category (Hand values are .50 and .85) How about taking a chance and gi
A misconception is to look at 2020 and NEWS and view them as KONGS of tiles.
As printed on the playing card, with no spaces between the tiles, you may indeed surmise these sets of tiles to be KONGS.
However..... 2020 and NEWS are NOT KONGS. KONGS are made up of four identical tiles with or without Jokers. Identical tile means the exact same tile number & suit (ie. 6 Bam, 6 Bam, 6 Bam, 6 Bam in a KONG of 6 Bam or 3 Dot, 3 Dot, 3 Dot, 3 Dot in a KONG of 3 Dot), or the same Wind