After 3 years of owning the laser, I’ve finally been shamed into making myself mahjong rulers – one day too late. I am the proud aunt to a lovely, heavy, mahjong set. It lives at my house, but belongs to two friends who bought it jointly.
For those who don’t know mahjong, or think they know it from playing the solitaire tile matching game on the computer, check out the Wikipedia post.
My friend Lorraine, of the crowd that taught me how to play and is half owner of the mahjong set I babysit, just got back from a two year stint in South Korea teaching English. So, just as we sent her off, we had a welcome back mahjong and grilling party last Saturday! I’ve been talking for YEARS about making mahjong rulers, so all the appropriate ribbing took place. So, of course, I made them Sunday.
Before play starts, even before dealing, 144 tiles need to be built into walls. Each of those walls need to be touching to make a box, so the dice don’t go flying all over the place. Smooth plastic tiles + trying to move them right next to each other (+ a drink or two) can lead to a lot of blow outs. And giggling. And rebuilding. There are reasons we’ve never finished a whole game of 16 rounds. Mahjong rulers (sometimes called pushers) are the perfect trick – 18 inches long, and it applies even pressure to your wall when moving it into place.
Calling them a ruler is pretty fancy – the commercially available versions are simply long, 3mm thick plastic rectangles, with no markings. Each player gets their own ruler, and the dealer is usually designated with a different color. (In my set, the dealer has the blue ruler). I decided to step up ruler game by engraving them with a guide to the tiles. Some mahjong sets are totally in Chinese, without any English number translation. This can be a detriment to to new players, who have to ask for identification.
I LOVE how they turned out! I would clean up the images a bit for production purposes, but they are more than adequate for my personal mahjong set. Anyone up for a game?