My dad has been talking about taking a mahjong class at his church (Episcopalians being ambitious when it comes to tabletop entertainments), so for Christmas, I surprised him with a set of his own. He was delighted, and we both got very excited about it. And then we started reading the directions.

Me: “Okay, so the dragons correspond to the suits.”

Dad: “Dragons correspond to suits. Got it.”

Me: “There’s a red dragon, a green dragon, and… soap.”


Dad: “I’m sorry, what was that last one?”

Me: “Soap.”

Dad: “A soap dragon.”

Me: “Yup.”

Dad: “Huh.”

Me: “Oh, and there are flowers and seasons, but they’re, like, interchangeable. I think.”

Dad: [flipping through the rule book] “And at some point, there’s something called a Charleston. Are… are we supposed to Charleston?”

Me: “Apparently. But we should probably figure out what these dice are for first. And all these coins. And this little spinner thing.”

[contemplative silence]

Dad: “Let’s play backgammon.”

Me: “Yes, please.”

He won.

Happy Boxing Day!

Author: Thumper (MJ)

Thumper Marjorie Forge is a Gardnerian High Priest, an initiate of the Minoan Brotherhood, a devout Discordian, a recovering alcoholic, and a notary public

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