The world means more when the volume hurts

Advertisements

Sevens

So, continuing with the card games theme (as started in my last post quite a while ago), today’s game is Sevens.  This was a game we used to play a lot as a family, in fact I think it was my mum’s favourite game.  As a child I used to find it boring – it didnt involve anythinbg exciting like knocking on the table (Oh Hell! will be a future game described), and you didnt get to call someone names (like Donkey or Dog) when they lost – it was a serious card game.

Now I’m older it is actually one of my favourites, but I dont get to play it too often as you need at least 3 players, and I usually just play cards with my boyfriend on holiday.  I like the strategy of it, and just the general ability to screw people over (bit of a competitive edge there!) – it helps that I’m quite good at it!

Anyway, here are the rules, along with a few variations.

Set-up:

  • Needs at least 3 players (with 2 it doesn’t really work as you know that any cards you don’t have your opposition has instead)
  • The full deck of cards is dealt out between the players. Players can look at their cards and sort them as they want.
  • The player with the 7 of diamond goes first.
  • The aim of the game is to be the first person to run out of cards.
  • At the end of the game the cards will laid out in the centre with the 7 in the middle in a line and then in suits, on one side a pile of cards going from 6 to ace, and on the other side a pile going from 8 to King.

Sevens set-up

Play:

  • The player with 7 of diamonds goes first. They place the card in the centre. Play continues in a clockwise direction
  • The next player can then either play another 7 or the 6 or 8 of diamonds.
  • Play continues round with each player taking a turn. The 6 or 8 of a suit can only be played once the 7 has been laid out, and these are built on in order (i.e. the 4 of spades can’t be played until the 5 of spades has been laid out, and the King of clubs can’t be played until the queen of clubs has been laid out.
  • If a player doesn’t hold a card that goes they knock and play moves to the next player.
  • If a player can play they must.
  • This continues round until one of the players runs out of cards and is declared the winner.

Variations:

  • The game can be played for money, with each player putting in a stake to play and then putting in further money each time they knock. The winner then takes the pot at the end.
  • The game can be played with a randomly selected number in the middle (rather than the 7). The cards are then built in the same way, but with the numbers one above and one below being the starting point for the building, e.g.

Sevens alternative

Shithead!

Back in February I went to Israel for a friend from work’s wedding.  Another friend from work also went and stayed in the same hotel, and one night we sat in the bar area playing cards together.  Playing cards is something I grew up with, especially on holiday, and I have accumulated quite a few games in my head (and have probably forgotten many more!)  Especially when I was at my granny’s and the whole family were together the card table (yes, we had a proper card table!) would come out and we’d have a round of something.  Its something I’m still adjusting to with my boyfriend’s family, they are either working (either at work, or doing something in the garden, or housework, etc) or watching TV.  All of their down time is spent watching TV.  It is so bad that whenever my boyfriend and I go on holiday, the first thing he does in a new hotel room is turn on the telly.  And even worse, I’ve started doing it to!

This weekend the same friend I played cards with in Israel sent me a text to ask me to write down a few of the games I know so she and her boyfriend could play on their holiday.  I thought as I have already taken the time to write them down I would publish them on here one at a time.  The aims being a) remind people the fun of card games; b) show myself I have something to give the world (even if it’s very tiny!); and c) to try to encourage myself to play cards more often, not just on holiday!

So, first up, the beautifully titled “Shithead”.  This game is actually mainly from my time at 6th form where we would sit round for hours during study periods playing this game.  I am pretty sure my granny had actually introduced it to the family a few years earlier after learning it on holiday, however she definitely didn’t call it “Shithead”!  I generally find that most people of a similar age to me know the game shithead but everyone plays different rules.  These are the rules we used to play at school, I don’t profess them to be accurate to the international laws of Shithead!

Set-up:

  • Can be played with 2 or more players
  • Deal each player 3 cards face down, 3 cards face up (on top of the face down cards) and 3 cards for their hand.
  • Remaining cards go face down in the centre in a pile
  • Each player can swap the cards in their hand with the cards face up in front of them (they can’t look at the face down cards at all). Generally it is best to have your best cards down laid out in front of you (see special cards below).
  • Players call their lowest card (excluding a 2 and ace is high) to decide who goes first. Black is lower than red (i.e. black 3 is the lowest someone would call) and if there is a tie, the person that called first gets to go first.

Play:

  • The person that goes first plays the card they called from their hand.   If they have multiple cards of the same number they can play them all together. They then pick up from the main pack as many cards as they put down (i.e. if they put down 2 cards they pick up 2 cards). Each player should always have a minimum of 3 cards in their hand.
  • The next player must play a card that is either the same number or higher (there is no restriction of how much higher), or an eligible “special card”, on the same pile. They also then replace the cards they’ve put down with cards from the main pack.
  • Play continues like this moving in a clockwise direction.
  • If a player cannot go, they must pick up all the cards that have been played. They don’t have to replace the cards they put down each time until they are down to having less than 3 cards.
  • If at any point 4 of a kind are put down (either in one go or by multiple players playing the same number), the pack is cleared and those cards are then out of the game. The person that placed the final number down then restarts play putting down any card they like.
  • Once the central pack of cards runs out, each player finishes the cards they have in their hand and then play the 3 cards that are face up in front of them. Rules are the same as when they were playing from their hand.
  • Once all three of a player’s face-up cards are played, they must play the face-down cards one at a time blindly.
  • The winner is the person that clears all of their cards in front of them first.
  • Play continues until there is just one person with cards left. They are then the “shithead”.

Special cards:

  • 2 – Can be played at any time, brings the number back down, i.e. allows a 3 to be played.
  • 5 – Can be played at any time, is “invisible”, i.e. the next player then has to play on the card that had been played before the 5. If multiple 5s are played one after the other, play has to be made on the last card that was played before a 5.
  • 9 – can only be played in order, the next player must then play a 9 or lower, play then continues as normal
  • 10 – Can be played at any time, clears the pack (in the same way as 4 of a kind) and then the player of the 10 gets to restart play, playing any card of their choosing.

Other rules:

  • There is no rule that says you have to play if you can and so a player can choose to pick up if they wish.
  • Ace is high, only another ace or a special card can be played on an ace.

Progress

Just wanted to share this as it made my day!

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/08/13/science/top-math-prize-has-its-first-female-winner.html?hpw&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&version=HpHedThumbWell&module=well-region&region=bottom-well&WT.nav=bottom-well&_r=1&referrer=

Sometimes I really wish I had stuck with my maths more after university. I guess I was too lazy. Maybe I should add that to my list of personal improvements!

Does this annoy anyone else?

Sky Sports

I spotted this advert at the station the other day and it really annoyed me.  I actually tweeted Sky Sports about it because it annoyed me that much.  It wasnt just the fact that it is already football season (I swear the Premiership only finished about a month ago!), but it was more about the image this advert is portraying – I don’t think it could look less diverse if it tried!

I’m not saying they shjould put a black man or a woman or any other “diverse” person just for the sake of it, but really what is this saying about football and who you have to be to watch football? Maybe I think about these things too much, but I’m sure this must be sending out some submiminal messages to people.  From Sky’s perspective, surely this will limit their viewership in some way?  It just seems bonkers.

Anyway, thought I’d share my views.

 

Progress?

So, as expected, keeping a blog is hard work.  When do people find the time to write it?!  I know when I should do it, when I’m procrastinating at work and achieving nothing (there’s a good 4 hours every day), but if I’m struggling to find the motivation to work I’m unlikely to find the motivation to write.  Although, at least this blog is about my favourite topic – me!

Anyway, stuff has happened since my last blog.  And other stuff hasn’t happened.  To give a run down:

  • I havent been for a run.  This is bad.  I’m working away for the rest of the week and I’ve brought my running kit in the hope that my hotel has a treadmill.  I would say its odds on that I’m essentially taking my trainers on little holiday for no reason.
  • I’ve had an above average amount of sex (for me anyway).  This is good.  Very very good.
  • I have been much better with my teeth and they seem to be getting whiter (they weren’t that bad in the first place – it’s my gums that are bad!)
  • Work has gotten busy again, which I should be pleased about, but I’m still finding motivation hard to come by.
  • I have felt guilty about not telling my boyfriend I’ve started a blog – I’ve never kept a secret from him before.  I don’t feel I can tell him following my first blog post where I said that helping him lose weight is an aim – he would be heart-broken.  Can you edit these posts once written?!
  • I’ve thought of a million and one other things that I want to improve since I made that list, and told myself for being too lazy to really think it through before I wrote it down.  For example, ahead of getting my boyfriend to lose weight, I want to lose some myself!
  • I found a hair on my leg that had been growing under the skin.  when I found it and freed it, it turned out it was about half an inch in length!  I nearly gagged!
  • I’ve been using moisturiser with self tan in to help build on the tiny amount on tan I got on holiday.  Its going better so far, with only my ankles looking a bit orange and patchy!
  • I have been annoyed at myself that I’m clearly not as funny as I thought I was – for some reason my blog posts aren’t coming out with the humourous twang I had hoped!

So that’s about it for now.  My next blog will most likely be a list of all the other improvements I want to make!  Does everyone give themselves such a hard time or is it just me?!

Spritz

Another area I think I need to improve in, especially for my work, is being a bit more on top of new technologies.  I genuinely find the new things I find out to be really cool, but I’m just rubbish (lazy) at getting round to seeking them out or looking them up.

A couple of weeks ago I got to try Google Glass, completely by chance, and was almost star struck by it – it had only been on the market in the UK for a week at the time and so it did feel pretty special.  If you’re interested in my view, I think it could well be the future, maybe not for social reason – I don’t think it will replace the smartphone or the tablet or anything like that, but I think there will be a number of applications for it in industries.  However, it needs to massively improve – it feels very temperamental at the moment and battery life is a bit rubbish.  The voice controls also don’t work that well (the guy showing it to us seemed to be able to control it better than the person wearing it).  I have visions of being stood a train station with Google Glass on and the person next to me trying to use theirs to looks something up but my Glasses reacting to their voice and showing me what they had requested!  Could lead to some awkward scenarios I’m sure!

I have finally gotten round to looking up the new technology for speed reading, in the format of Spritz (http://www.spritzinc.com/#) – I heard about this months ago, and then got reminded of it last week and have just finally gotten round to looking it up and having a go.  If you’re interested I got to about 500 words a minute.  It was a lot easier than I imagined but a little it stressful.  I don’t know what happens if you need to go back because for whatever reason you missed something.  Maybe I’m a cynic (actually I’m certain that I am) but I don’t really see it catching on, except for on things like wearables such as the Samsung Gear watch thing, but it is one of those things that unless it is adopted quite widely, people just wont be able to get used to it and it wont catch on.  That doesn’t mean it isn’t really cool though, and I like that they are challenging the norm with it.

Anyway, that’s just my view, but I’m not exactly what you would call a visionary so I will probably be proved completely wrong!