# Will 2022 Be Year of the Ninja Monkey?

“Twenty Twenty Two Gonna Be Great Year!” shrieks Ninja Monkey.

“How so?” asks the Wise Snail.

“Twenty Twenty Two – My Year! Year of Monkey!”

“You don’t have to jump up and down all the time,” gripes the Sand Griper. “It’s annoying.”

“Besides,” roars the Tiger, “you have no evidence to back up your claim. According to the Chinese Zodiac, it’s MY year. The formula for Tiger years is 12x + 6 for any whole number x. Substitute x=168 and you get 2022. Quod Erat Demonstrandum.”

“Tiger is right,” says the Elephant. “I may not be the sharpest tool in the box when it comes to Phil Hellmuth’s menagerie of poker animal types, but I can remember every sign of the Zodiac and which year corresponds to which animal.”

“Not so fast,” says the Ox. “Chinese New Year starts on February not January, so I still get to enjoy approximately 30 more days of fame.”

“To add insult to injury,” adds the rot13(fzneg nff), “the formula for Monkey years is 12x for any whole number x. That means you are the maximum possible distance in either direction from one of your good years – therefore 2022 is the worst possible year for the monkey”

“Monkey don’t care, Monkey don’t care! Monkey invent his own Zodiac!”

“But you can’t invent something out of the blue just because a few unpleasant facts got in the way of a really good story” says the Eagle.

Ninja Monkey presents his own version of events: there are exactly 337 animals in today’s meeting. Each animal represents a different species – if we conveniently ignore the fact Ninja Monkey brought his GF along. Ninja Monkey assigned himself the year 0, his GF the year 1 and the rest of the animals different years in no particular order. How convenient it was that 337 happened to be a prime divisor of 2022. Quod Erat Demonstrandum.

“The monkey raises a valid point,” says the Wise Snail. “If the Zodiac caters for only 12 animals, then the vast majority of us miss out altogether. Monkey’s suggestion is much fairer even if it is not based on accepted tradition”.

With nobody able to rebut the Wise Snail’s statement, everybody stews in awkward silence for a few minutes. Finally Bad Idea Bear #1 comes up with a resolution: The Eagle would deal ten random hands and Ninja Monkey would have to win at least one game without rot13(haqb) using his Improved Random Move Algorithm. If the Monkey could achieve this then the new Zodiac is in. Otherwise, the Monkey would have to reluctantly accept the Tiger’s version of events and wait another six years.

Nobody else has anything better to offer, and for once a suggestion from a Bad Idea Bear gets unanimous agreement. At least there is no BIB #2 around to come up with something even worse. So, without further ado Let The Games Begin!

## Game 3

“I thought things had started well,” sighs the Wise Snail, who is Ninja Monkey’s best friend.

## Game 4

“Some promising signs there,” sneers the Tiger. “Too bad in the end!”

<<Several hands later>>

“Okay fine”, says the Monkey as he slams the cards onto the ground after conceding the last hand. “Year of the Tiger it is!”

# A Merry Christmas to All

Spider GM would like to thank all the characters who appeared at least once in my blog posts. Big shoutout to the following, sorted (approximately) by reverse chronological order of first appearance.

Please let me know in the comments if I have forgotten anybody.

• Rot13(Yhpl Gur Fyhg)
• Simon, Julie and Webb (from Numberwang)
• Hester, Arthur, Pearl and Roger (from The Scarlet Letter)
• Those colourful blobs from Among Us
• Magnus Carlsen and Ian Nepomniachtchi
• Big Red Shiny Question Mark and Rick Astley
• Captain Obvious and Gravelsealer Geoeyes
• N. Kamath
• Schrodinger’s Cat
• Abraham Maslow
• Evil Queen and Magic Mirror (from Snow White)
• Joe Bloggs, some flying pigs and a bird who only knows how to walk and say “oink”.
• Oscar the Grouch and other characters from Sesame Street
• Sherlock Holmes and James Watson
• The horse (from the Watering Hole story)
• Mark Goodliffe, Simon Anthony and Eugene Varshavsky. No prizes for guessing which one famously cheated in the 2009 Philadelphia Sudoku championship.
• The King (from the well-known fable about grains of wheats on a chessboard) and 104 dancing girls
• The White Bishop and Black Knight (from that story with the excruciatingly bad punch line based on a Monty Python sketch).
• Homer Simpson and an army of New Facebook Emojis.
• Parson Gotti and the Dwagon Spidew.
• Hem and Haw
• The Sand Griper and other characters introduced in the Welcome To Peak Stupid story.
• Ninja Monkey’s girlfriend.
• Project Manager One and Project Manager Two
• The Silly Goose.
• Cy the Cynic and Minnie Bottoms (borrowed from Frank Stewart’s excellent Bridge columns).
• Ms. Spider (a somewhat dodgy math teacher).
• Eagle, Lion and other animal types defined by Professional Poker player Phil Hellmuth
• Wise Snail
• Ninja Monkey
• The Queen of Hearts (from my short story trilogy of 2019)

In return, the above list of characters would like to wish all my readers a Merry Christmas. Here’s looking forward to More Of The Same in 2022.

# Merry Christmas and Silly New Year!

Spider GM, Ninja Monkey, Ninja Mouse, Bad Idea Bears, all the other animals in the Animal Kingdom, individual playing cards, the two project managers, their team players, and anybody else who appeared in at least one silly story that I have forgotten would like to wish all Spider Solitaire players a merry Christmas and silly new year 😊

Coming soon in 2020 to a place near you: More Of The Same