July 18, 2011

Mahjong and Chuck E. Cheeses.

I babysat last week at a Chuck E. Cheese's. Honestly, places like that are breeding grounds for future gamblers--bright lights, loud bells, joyous screams, heartbreaking cries. Tickets are dispensed liked rapid fire as tokens are devoured by various games. Children are begging parents to buy more and more tokens, which they waste on one unbeatable game that promises one unbelievable prize.

For some reason, I get rather competitive when I play games with little kids. I guess it's because I never win against people my age so I feel some sort of satisfaction in beating three-year-olds at target games. Pathetic, I know. But hey, you try trampling over forty-ish three- to six-year-olds on your way to the game that held the biggest jackpot: 3,000 tickets. It's another game in itself, and the prize? The realization that you possess the ability to combat scores of children jumping on you.

But I shouldn't say anymore: What happens in Chuck E. Cheese's stays in Chuck E. Cheese's.

Now, Mahjong. No, not the internet Mahjong where you mindlessly match tiles (but I admit that I play sometimes). I'm talking Mahjong. With the physical tiles.
Those are pretty awesome tiles...I want my own set...
With the gambling.
100 HKD (Hong Kong Dollar) = 12.84 USD
You know how movies always depict groups of old men gathered around a chessboard in the park (I've never witnessed them in reality...)? Well, in Hong Kong, and I'm guessing China too, they're gathered around a Mahjong board. And I've joined in on the gathering myself. There's just something about the clicking of the tiles when you "shuffle" them and the joy you feel when have a good hand. And I'm generally a good sport. That is, only if I feel I've been beaten by a worthy hand. Otherwise, all emotions break out on my part.

But in all honesty, if your hand, which would have been worth about 20 USD per loser had you grabbed a winning tile, was vanquished with someone's "winning" hand worth 1 USD per loser, you'd be upset too. And if you were defeated three rounds in a row by such cheap hands, you'd cry too...um...which I may or may not have done.

Here is a clip from a Hong Kong movie called "Mahjong Warrior" so you can get a taste of Mahjong is like. I find this clip hilarious, but that's because I understand what they're saying; you probably won't think the same, but it's here anyway.
Sorry the subtitles weren't very good. That's just how they are in Hong Kong movies. You generally don't switch tiles with your neighbors, but the version they were playing, which they called the "American" version, allowed them to do so.

And there you have it. Mahjong. I've been trying to resist the urge to play since there aren't enough players here to Mahjong with me  (you need four players and the only people I know in my area who plays is my own family, but at the moment, only two members of my family are here) and I know I'll end up sitting at the table by myself, staring longingly at the tiles, wishing there was someway we can play with only three people.

A quick shout-out to Crystal who will be satisfying my need to play Mahjong when I'm back at school. Anyone want to join? (You are a lifesaver, my friend.)

But while I'm home, does someone want to come Mahjong-it-up with me? I'll teach you.

p.s. "Deathly Hallows Part Two" review to come on Thursday...along with pictures, which I know I said I'd post last Friday. I apologize. I lied.

1 comment:

  1. I'm up for some Mahjong... though chances of that happening are like 1%.
    You should start a mahjong club. XD