Do you play cards? I don’t much anymore, you know, because it’s hard to play cards by yourself. Growing up I played my fair share of Texas Hold’em, mostly with friends – usually having cocktails involved. Every time I was around my Grandpa we would end up playing Cribbage. With Muddah and friends I would play Pitch, even joining in on some Sunday tournaments at the local “watering hole”. I was actually a preferred partner. I’m pretty proud of that. After joining the Church I’ve spent less time playing cards with your standard deck of cards and more time with games like Apples to Apples, Uno and Phase 10. I could tell stories about each one of these games is I wanted. I don’t want to right now though. I would prefer to tell you about the game Faddah prefers to play, being Gin Rummy.
I’m not sure why Faddah prefers this game. Perhaps it’s because of its simple nature. We play to 100 points. We keep ten cards in our hands. We try to collect runs and trips. We don’t “go down” unless we have ten or fewer points. 52 cards. Nothing wild. Straight forward. This is fairly simple but we’re not going to let that take away from the fun that can be had from playing it. Since I’ve been back for the holidays I’ve played with Faddah a couple of nights. The first night things leaned his way. I won the last game, out of four or five. Last night was different though. Last night I had to defend myself… a bit.
We have different playing styles. I prefer to go for the win, every hand. Faddah will accumulate points few at a time, trying to wear you down. As you might imagine that means we sorta clash during our play. I stay quiet and sit back while we play. Faddah keeps up the dialogue, always questioning my motives. The first two games were fairly normal. I won one, and he won the other. During his winning game he was looking for what he calls a “Snider”. Others might call this being skunked. That is, losing the game without scoring a single point. I haven’t been skunked, yet. The third game was quite explosive.
The first hand started out normal. He had won the previous game, so along with that he also won the deal. He shuffled and offered the cut. I cut them “thin to win”. Ten cards a piece were dealt. I picked up my jumbled mess and noticed that things looked familiar. I needed two cards to make “Gin”. There was no way it could be that easy. He flipped the discard and I passed. He picked it up and laid down one of the cards I needed. Holy cow. I only need one card to go down. He took his turn and laid down the other card I needed to win the hand. I can’t believe this is happening. I picked the card up, placed it in my hand, put my discard face down and said “Gin”. I laid down my two runs and one set of trips. Faddah looked at me with complete and utter surprise. “Gin!” I don’t think he said anything else. I couldn’t hear or see anyway because before I knew it he had thrown his hand into my face.
“There, count’em yourself. Gin! Why I never! Must be nice to have a no brainer. I tell you what. Next time you get a hand like that tell me and I’ll give you 75 points right off that bat… so we don’t have to go through these motions next time.”
I ended up with 80 points. I won that game, and I think the next two. I didn’t have a hand that good after, yet.
What kind of card games do you like to play? What kind of card player are you?