In an effort to add some clarity to a topic that has baffled Mennonites for centuries, the Daily Bonnet has devised a handy ranking of the relative evilness of particular card games. In descending order, the most evil card games are:
10. Rook – The great thing about Rook cards is that you’re not using real playing cards, which, apparently, are really really bad. Instead of suits, you have colours, and that makes a world of a difference. Plus, you’re playing in teams. Mennonites like teams. Rating: not sinful at all.
9. Dutch Blitz – not sinful at all, unless someone gets hurt and you don’t apologize right away. Rating: not sinful, but has potential to be.
8. Uno – also not sinful at all, but we much prefer if you refer to the game by its Plautdietsch name Een. Rating: not sinful if played in Low German.
7. Big Boss, Little Boss – Also known by a variety of more colourful names, this game is sinful if you’re using real playing cards. Please try to play this with Rook cards instead. Also, before commencing please remind players that, as Mennonites, we do not believe in any kind of hierarchy. Consider playing Go Fish instead (or, perhaps, go actual fishing). Rating: 40% sinful.
6. Solitaire – Using playing cards is bad. However, there are worse games. At least with solitaire you’re playing alone and are not being a stumbling block for anyone else who is struggling with card-playing. Rating: 50% sinful.
5. 52 Card Pick-up – this is not so much a game, as it is a trick you play on people. We like that there’s no actually card-playing involved, and we like that a lot of time is spent literally picking up cards off the floor, but given that the entire premise of the game is based on a lie, we cannot endorse it. Rating: 52% sinful.
4. Three-Card Monte – this is a street scam designed to dupe tourists in European cities into giving up their money. As Mennonites we’ve had more than enough trouble in Europe. Avoid this game. Rating: 70% sinful.
3. Poker – This game is often played by men with their buddies on a Saturday night and sometimes involves alcohol consumption. This is not the sort of fellowship we want to encourage, even if the buy-in is just $20. Rating: 81% sinful
2. Blackjack – Not only does Blackjack use playing cards, but it also involves gambling and often takes place in a casino. Plus the number 21 gives me the creeps. Rating: 100% sinful (unless you donate all your winnings to the church).
1. Strip Poker – unless you’re playing the Mennonite variation, which involves adding layers of clothes, this game has everything going wrong with it: playing cards, alcohol consumption, gambling, and cavorting with the opposite sex. Rating: 100% sinful. Avoid at all costs.