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Life is only what you wonder.

Monday, July 21, 2003

A Five Minute Story

Monday Night Spades

Stubby was my partner, which was perfect because we had our special signals.
It's not really cheating. Well, technically it is, but is it our fault we can read each other so well?
It was my turn to shuffle. I've never been really good at this, my big paws awkward and clumsy with the cards, but I got the job done.
We were playing against Howie and Mook who made an absolouely lousy team. You'd think they'd realize that by now.
Howie would throw his best cards away and Mook always underbid terribly.
The game was Spades and we played every Monday.
"You gonna deal them cards, Eyeball?" Mook said and took a long pull on his beer.
"Yeah, I'm dealin' 'em. I'm dealin' 'em. Keep yer pants on, Mookie." I said.
I offered the deck to Howie to cut, but he waved it away as I knew he would. He had this strange superstition that cutting the deck was bad luck or something.
So I dealt.
Mook would pick up each his cards as soon as they were put in front of him, pissing me off to no end.
"Mook, you don't pick up yer cards 'till their all dealt," I said, "You'd get shot for that in the Old West."
"Yeah, well in case ya hadn't guessed, this ain't the Old West." Mook said, cigarette dangling from the corner of his mouth.
I decided to let that one go.
Stubby had already picked up his pile of cards and was sorting them, so I did too. It was a pretty good hand.
Howie was looking at his cards and squinting, sorting them and resorting them. In about ten minutes he would be done and ready to place his bid. He wasn't the sharpest knife in the drawer.
That was OK, though. It gave Stubby and me time to strategize.
I looked over at Stubby. He was rubbing his nose with his index finger and his thumb and second finger were extended. He looked at me and raised his left eyebrow.
I tapped my cigarette in the ashtray four times and looked over at him to see if he caught it. He winked back at me.
We knew exactly what to do.
We were going to mop up the floor with them.