WSOM: getting a little excited around here

The World Series of Mahjong is almost here. Am I ready?

The last World Series I have to say I felt ready. I’d been playing well and felt good about my play too. How have I been playing lately?

Well, I’ve been kicking serious…ummm…well, I’ve been doing pretty well at work the last couple months. I’ve won 45 of my last 112 games at Sentenbo in Kinshicho and Ochanomizu for a winning percentage of more than 40%!!

But then there’s League play. I finished barely positive in normal league giving me at least the possibility of moving up through Special League if I could maybe win one hand for the love of God! But no, I could not. Serious crash and burn on Saturday.

Which was followed by me administering another beating to the poor players on Fight Club Sunday. I got 13 Orphans twice! In one game! One hand after the other!!! My winning percentages this month are 63% for 3 player and a mere 32% for 4 player games. Though I took 4th place in 3 out of 4 games this afternoon.

In a word, my current condition is “bimyou”. Unfortunately for our English readers that word is in Japanese. And it’s one of those words that the dictionary doesn’t do justice to as the nuance is more complicated than just the “dicey or questionable situation” you get there.

I’m totally ambivalent about my play at the moment.

And the structure of the tournament is different this year so that it throws into question my strategy of simply going for big hands all the time.

Round scores will be square rooted before being added to one’s running total which somehow has the curious effect of magnifying negative scores. Or smallifying positive scores. Somehow I’ve forgotten how math works. Anyway, the point is that the system is designed now to reward players who get consistently positive scores each round rather than big scores some and negative others.

So, in my confusion, what is my path to riches?


We had a cool team a couple years ago but it was a little short on experience.

Holy b’goley do we have that covered this time! Just to name a couple, Makoto Sawazaki and Yuko Ito who just by themselves may have more Mahjong experience than me, Jenn, Konno, and Gemma combined.

And several other pros from our association too. I plan on using this resource to its fullest extent. Because if there’s one thing I do remember about the way I felt going into WSOM two years ago, it was a sincere humility regarding my ability and how much I still had to learn and how much I could still take from the other players around me.

So that’s where I’m trying to get back to these days, learning mode. And what a team I get to be a part of and try to learn something with!

I hope I learn something in Macau this week…

RM on Social