How to Play Double Bid Euchre Part I: Basic Gameplay

Wednesday, 31 March 2004

Four peo­ple in teams of two. Your part­ner should sit across from you.

A pinochle deck or the Ace, King, Queen, Jack, Ten and Nine in all four suits from two reg­u­lar decks of cards. This means each card will have a du­pli­cate of it­self. If you are al­ready con­fused per­haps you should play Memory with them in­stead. You al­so need a pen and pa­per for score­keep­ing pur­pos­es.

Helpful Terms:
Bid: Amount of tricks that must be tak­en. A bid is a num­ber in a par­tic­u­lar suit or no-trump [high or low].

Trick: Four cards, one from each player’s hand.

Trump: The most pow­er­ful suit for a par­tic­u­lar hand. Trump is de­ter­mined by bid­ding be­fore each hand is played.

No-trump: A bid of High or Low means that the high­est card that fol­lows suit in a trick takes the trick.

Bowers [right, left]: In a Trump bid, bow­ers are the jacks of col­or. the Right Bower is the Jack of the suit bid, the Left Bower is the jack of the oth­er suit in the same col­or. Ex: If Spades are Trump, the Jack of Spades is the Right Bower and the Jack of Clubs is the Left Bower. There are two Right Bowers and Two Left Bowers in Double Bid Euchre.

Reneg: Failure to fol­low suit.

Euchre: When the team with­out the bid pre­vents the team with the bid from get­ting the num­ber of tricks they bid up­on. This is al­so called ‘go­ing set.’

To score 52 tricks.


  • A play­er must al­ways fol­low suit. Failure to do so re­sults in a reneg and loss of the hand.
  • A team wins if and on­ly if they score 52 tricks or more by win­ning their bid or by eu­chre­ing the op­po­nent.
  • The per­son who wins the bid has the lead.
  • The per­son who takes the trick has the lead.
  • The last trick may be looked at by any play­er; pro­vid­ed that no cards have been played since it was tak­en.
  • The first in­stance of any card takes prece­dence over the oth­er in­stance. Ex: If both Right Bowers are played in the same trick, the first one played takes prece­dence.
  • Play pro­ceeds clock­wise be­gin­ning with the per­son who has the lead.

The deal­er of­fers a cut to the per­son on their right and then deals card three at a time clock­wise around the ta­ble. When each play­er has twelve cards, the play­er to the left of the deal­er of­fers an ini­tial bid. Bidding al­so pro­ceeds clock­wise un­til it comes to the deal­er who has the last bid. The high­est bid is then marked down and the per­son who made the bid leads.

Trump rank is de­ter­mined in this way: If Trump is Spades the Jack of Spades [Right Bower] is the high­est card, the Jack of Clubs [Left Bower] is the sec­ond high­est and in de­scend­ing or­der of im­por­tance Ace, King, Queen, Ten, Nine. Trump beats any card in a non-trump suit. Thus a nine of Spades beats any off-suit Ace. If no trump cards are played in the trick, the high­est card in the led suit takes the trick.

The num­ber of tricks each team has tak­en at the end of the hand is added to pre­vi­ous hands. If a team is eu­chred they lose points in the amount that they bid. The score can be neg­a­tive.

Tomorrow: How to Play Double Bid Euchre Part II: Strategy

How to Play Double Bid Euchre Part III: How to Really Play Double Bid Euchre

About Schmidt

Tuesday, 30 March 2004

Screw Mock-a-Blog week. I’ve got more im­por­tant things to write on. I watched About Schmidt last evening and it was al­right. Definitely an old person’s movie. It was solid­ly put to­geth­er with in­ter­est­ing shots but noth­ing fan­cy. Jack Nicholson made the movie. It is ob­vi­ous why his per­for­mance got him nom­i­nat­ed for so many awards. Kathy Bates was even nom­i­nat­ed for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her per­for­mance. I wasn’t stunned by her per­for­mance but I was stunned by her get­ting bare-ass naked for a hot tub scene. She is not an at­trac­tive woman.

Watching About Schmidt got me think­ing though. I’ve got the feel­ing more and more films like this are go­ing to start ap­pear­ing in the wake of ba­by boomer re­tire­ments. I’m not and not meant to be in­ter­est­ed in films about old age. The de­mo­graph­ic is my parent’s. I am sort of in­ter­est­ed in how ag­ing and the de­cline of the boomers will be por­trayed. This ar­ti­cle by Michael Moses ap­peared in the January 2002 edi­tion of Reason and sort of gets at some of the prob­lems that boomer cin­e­ma might throw up.

In an in­ter­view Spielberg grant­ed when Saving Private Ryan was re­leased, the di­rec­tor summed up his view of the great con­flict. “I think it is the key — the turn­ing point of the en­tire cen­tu­ry. It was as sim­ple as this: The cen­tu­ry ei­ther was go­ing to pro­duce the ba­by boomers or it was not go­ing to pro­duce the ba­by boomers. World War II al­lowed my gen­er­a­tion to ex­ist.” There you have it. The ul­ti­mate ben­e­fit, the high­est jus­ti­fi­ca­tion and sanc­ti­fi­ca­tion of the great­est, if not the blood­i­est, war in hu­man his­to­ry: the birth of the ba­by boomers.

Pretty in­flam­ma­to­ry; but what he is get­ting at fi­nal­ly shows up in his sec­ond to last sen­tence.

The ba­by boom gen­er­a­tion, for bet­ter or worse, is the first ful­ly com­mit­ted to the view that to con­trol the vi­su­al rep­re­sen­ta­tion of his­to­ry is to con­trol his­to­ry it­self, and there­by one?s own des­tiny.

I find this trou­bling be­cause my parent’s gen­er­a­tion has so much clout that it can en­force cul­tur­al and ide­o­log­i­cal change to a high de­gree. Its the mes­sage of the 60s aged 40 years. In this way, boomers are still re­belling against their up­bring­ing and try­ing to de­fine them­selves. I think I’m un­com­fort­able with this be­cause I feel the same way. I think the boomers are ob­so­lete and should stop wor­ry­ing about them­selves so much. I think by now they should have come up with some sense of sta­bil­i­ty. I think they should give it up and let GenXrs come in­to their own. I don’t want an in­flux of movies about be­ing old be­cause I want to cel­e­brate be­ing young. At the same time I’m in­ter­est­ed in what boomers are go­ing to pro­duce in their evening years.

I sup­pose every gen­er­a­tion feels this way as the pre­vi­ous gen­er­a­tion ages. So I guess my tirade is noth­ing more than the pot call­ing the ket­tle black.

Mock-a-Blog: Five Dollar Beer

Monday, 29 March 2004

Since no one has asked me to guest blog for them, de­spite my own will­ing­ness to whore out my prime lo­ca­tion- URL with a view- vir­tu­al es­tate by let­ting oth­ers sul­ly its sanc­ti­ty with their in­fi­del paws; I am go­ing to mock a blog each day this week. Five Dollar Beer gets the first treat­ment.

Last night for din­ner I fi­nal­ly made a tra­di­tion­al American recipe that I have heard about but nev­er re­al­ly tried. Apparently it is a fa­vorite of many school chil­dren for their lunch. It is called, strange­ly, the ‘Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich.’ I had to make sev­er­al trips to the gro­cery be­cause even though I have ran­dom spices like grey fen­nel and weird veg­eta­bles like Quorn and Clamatos in myr­i­ad quan­ti­ties about my house, I didn’t have the nec­es­saries to fol­low the recipe. 

The first and most im­por­tant in­gre­di­ent in this sand­wich is peanut but­ter. Apparently this can be eas­i­ly pur­chased at any nor­mal gro­cery store but I de­cid­ed to try to make it my­self. I hulled a bag of peanuts left­over from a Cleveland Indians game last year and ground them in­to tiny bits. Then I stirred them in­to some melt­ed goat but­ter and put the mix­ture in­to the fridge to thick­en. Next on the list was straw­ber­ry jam or straw­ber­ry jel­ly. I tried mak­ing jam first but that didn’t work out so well. I had heard from some­one once that lit­tle straw­ber­ries get up­set when they are in a jam- so I threat­ened them. I told them I would purée them, mix them with sug­ar and boil them. I fig­ured that would be con­sid­ered a pret­ty tough jam to a straw­ber­ry. But those were mean bug­gers, they stayed just the way they were. I de­cid­ed to go the jel­ly route.

We have a big tub of pe­tro­le­um jel­ly that I am quite fond of in the bath­room. I took it out and re­al­ized that I’d al­ready used most of it. So I had to go back to the store and buy some more. The clerk looked at my kin­da fun­ny and men­tioned that this was the third tub I’d pur­chased in the last three days. I’ve re­al­ly got to cut back. Anyway, steal­ing one from my peanut but­ter recipe I mixed the straw­ber­ries in­to the pe­tro­le­um jel­ly. It didn’t look too ap­pe­tiz­ing but who am I to judge what chil­dren will eat.

The last thing was white bread with­out crust. Thankfully, I have a spe­cial friend named Whitebread. He is quite crusty un­for­tu­nate­ly. His hy­gien­ic habits mir­ror my own, that is, he has none. It was easy to get him naked but a bit hard­er to co­erce him in front of the fire hose. Once I turned it on, the crust was knocked right off of him. I apol­o­gized and lured him back in­to my place with promis­es of a peanut but­ter and jel­ly sand­wich. Apparently, he had eat­en those as a child. 

Once I had him se­cure­ly tied to the bed as usu­al I came back with the thick­ened peanut but­ter and my fresh­ly made jel­ly. I spread it on thick, us­ing a put­ty knife. Then I cut him in half di­ag­o­nal­ly [as per the recipe] and ate my sand­wich with some Tang and Cheesy Poofs. I’m go­ing to have to make PBJ more of­ten.

Grandma’s 80th

Sunday, 28 March 2004

This week­end was an­oth­er whirl­wind spent­ly most­ly in my car. I got home in Connersville at 8:30 Friday, ate din­ner and then passed out. Saturday I was up at 7:30, ate break­fast, packed my car and went to Cambridge City to put some stuff in my mom’s an­tique booth. Then I con­tin­ued on my way to Noblesville, stop­ping briefly to pick up some fresh­ly baked Amish pies. I got to Noblesville [My sec­ond cous­ing Melissa rid­ing with me] and un­loaded. I did valet park­ing briefly as my grandmother’s friends ar­rived. A lot of old peo­ple. Grandma showed up around 3:15 and wasn’t sur­prised be­cause ap­par­ent­ly some of the peo­ple RSVPed their re­grets to her in­stead of my aunt. Everyone vis­it­ed for awhile then we ate and my un­cles told some sto­ries about grand­ma. Then I sat out­side with the rest of the men un­til it was too dark and too cold to stay out­side any longer. We came in­side and my un­cle Corbin and I laid the smack down on my grand­ma and Willard in two games of dou­ble-bid Euchre. It doesn’t mat­ter if it is my grandma’s 80th or not. If we are play­ing cards, no holds are barred. Then I passed out again [I got to sleep in ac­tu­al beds for two nights in a row!] and woke up this morn­ing around 7:30, show­ered, packed up mom’s car and then went to Mass. I left to come back to Cleveland from church and got back here around 3:10. I un­loaded my car and went to the store. I’ve got to do laun­dry tonight and then pass out be­fore work to­mor­row. I won­der how the team did at NCAAs… I should check that next. This is all one para­graph be­cause thats how my week­end felt.

Things To Do Before 30

Friday, 26 March 2004

  • Run a marathon.
  • Spend a sum­mer wan­der­ing through Europe.
  • Write, sing and per­form an orig­i­nal blues piece.
  • Publish some­thing I’ve writ­ten.
  • Buy a clas­sic au­to­mo­bile.
  • Learn sign lan­guage.
  • Find the right woman and get hitched.
  • Initiate con­tact with my fa­ther.
  • Buy a house.
  • Direct a short film.

NCAA Fencing 2004

Thursday, 25 March 2004

Today and to­mor­row many of my team­mates will be pass­ing through Cleveland on a road­trip out to Brandeis University for the NCAA Fencing Championships which are this week­end. Twice this week I have been in­vit­ed to ac­com­pa­ny my team out there. ‘Adam, we can pick you up ear­ly Friday and drop you back off on Monday.’ or ‘Hey, man I’m com­ing through Cleveland to­mor­row and I’ve got an ex­tra seat.’

It frus­trat­ed me ter­ri­bly to say no. I want to go root them on, I want to be there and help them fight. We didn’t qual­i­fy the full 12 this year. Men’s épée on­ly got one in. The mid­west­ern re­gion is start­ing to get alot more com­pet­i­tive than in the past. I don’t know if we have a chance to win this year, it is al­ways so very close. I wish I was go­ing to be there with my video cam­era and I wish I was go­ing to make the end of the year video for the team as I did in the past.

I miss be­ing on a team. I miss fenc­ing with my friends. I miss team din­ners at Bruno’s and team par­ties and tail­gates. I miss the glo­ry. Now I’ve got a job in CubicleLand® and bills and ‘re­spon­si­bil­i­ty.’ I’ve al­so got to head to Indiana for my Grandmother’s 80th birth­day this week­end. That should be a good time, see­ing the fam­i­ly and all. At the same time I wish I was go­ing to be at Brandeis.

Mary, Queen of Victory, pray for us. Go Irish on three. 123.

The 47 Ronin

Wednesday, 24 March 2004

I fi­nal­ly fin­ished watch­ing Genroku chushin­gu­ra [The 47 Ronin]. This film is con­sid­ered one of the clas­sic films of Japanese cin­e­ma and was di­rect­ed by the al­ways im­pres­sive Kenji Mizoguchi. The film was re­leased in 1942 and was com­mis­sioned by the Japanese gov­ern­ment to be a na­tion­al­ist rhetoric in fa­vor of war to re­al­ize Japanese su­prema­cy blah blah.

What Mizoguchi end­ed up giv­ing them was the last thing they ex­pect­ed I’d bet. The film is long- 222 min­utes- and moves so very slow­ly that I had to watch it in half hour in­cre­ments and then take a break. It is very Japanese. I might have missed it, but I can­not think of one in­stance in the en­tire film where there is phys­i­cal con­tact be­tween two peo­ple. Bushido is a cen­tral theme and rigid obe­di­ence and po­lite­ness are al­ways present. It was very hard for me to watch be­cause of this. The re­straint was so pal­pa­ble, at times I knew the char­ac­ters were hold­ing back the urge to em­brace [or would have been had they been Westerners]. Even when close friends com­mit hari-kiri, no one touch­es.

Oishi- the main char­ac­ter and cham­ber­lain of the Asano cas­tle at Ako- is the per­son­i­fi­ca­tion of bushi­do. He is the per­fect samu­rai, sac­ri­fic­ing his en­tire life, his hon­or and even en­dan­ger­ing him­self po­lit­i­cal­ly in or­der to ex­act re­venge for his lord. He is al­so so very kind­heart­ed that the amount of willpow­er it must have tak­en him to be so stern is amaz­ing. I’ve nev­er seen such a mas­ter­ful­ly and enig­mat­i­cal­ly por­trayed char­ac­ter as Oishi. He de­mands re­spect from the au­di­ence. Although the film con­cerns it­self al­most whol­ly with vi­o­lence, there is no vi­o­lence in the film apart from one sword stroke in the first scene.

The film is ab­solute­ly beau­ti­ful to watch. It cuts rarely, most shots are long takes. I think, per­haps, that they on­ly cut when the mag ran out of film. The block­ing is al­so ex­quis­ite. The amount of things that can be done with tra­di­tion­al Japanese ar­chi­tec­ture pa­per doors, screens, open walls and all that let the cam­era move seam­less­ly from in­doors to out­doors and al­low the shot to change shape com­plete­ly with out the cam­era mov­ing at all. This is def­i­nite­ly a film worth see­ing. The dif­fi­cul­ty you might have watch­ing it, the pa­tience nec­es­sary; mir­rors quite ef­fec­tive­ly the dif­fi­cul­ty the ronin must have had in plan­ning their re­venge. I’m not sure if it was in­ten­tion­al, since this is so ob­vi­ous­ly a Japanese film, per­haps I am mere­ly feel­ing this since I am a Westerner, but it works any­way.