Musings: Lifetime Card Game

Today’s topic is: “What was the last game you played?” 

Playing Gin with my Hubby

My husband Kurt and I have an ongoing gin card game. Back in March, we had a rare at-home date night and had a chance to play a few hands. Our current point split is 28,764 to 27,498, in Kurt’s favor. We started playing on December 17, 2011 when I taught him how to play gin. But the student soon surpassed the master, because he quickly became a much better player than me.

Lake Tahoe 1991

We were inspired to start this lifelong game of gin because my parents are also playing one. They began keeping score in 1989. Their gin game has been a staple on every family vacation for the last 25 years. My stepfather is currently leading with a score of 125,683 to 119,322. But she says she’s waiting for him to go senile so she will be able to catch up.

Kurt and I decided to use a slightly different set of scoring rules than my parents follow. We get 50 points for what we call ‘greedy bastard’ eleven-card super gin, and aces count as 11 points against you if you hold them ungrouped at the end of the game.

We played a lot on our epic month-long vacation to Belize in 2012. I pulled ahead (for half a day in January) back when the score was around 2,000 points. By his birthday in early February, he had a thousand point lead. He had scored ten thousand points by Valentine’s Day (when I was within 300 points of catching him). I gained a short-lived lead again in late February, around 11,000 points. But since then, I’ve consistently lagged behind.

During the last five years, I’ve had some pretty phenomenal hands. I’ve won a hand after just one card and I’ve earned 116 points in a single win! Even so, I’m always several hundred points behind. Since Kurt is seven years older than me, I suppose I can always hope he goes senile first.

~ Phoebe DeCook

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