Writing Echoes

Aside from the ever-present pachinko, hanafuda has been for a while one of the two games I associate with yakuza. The other, probably due to Rurouni Kenshin’s [link] influence is dice; actually when I read Confessions of a Yakuza (a Life in Japan’s Underworld) [link] they did mention dice quite a few times, back in the 1920’s, but I don’t remember if they mentioned hanafuda at any point.

For some reason, however, hanafuda captured my curiosity, and I did give Okonogi Kazuki a liking for the game. I wanted to learn to play, so there I went, with Beta-san’s help.

Hanafuda, 花札 (flower cards), is a card game, extended among yakuza in Japan and ‘normal’ people in South Korea. There are twelve suits that represent months, and each month is illustrated with a different flower.

January Pine 一月 松 Ichigatsu Matsu
February Ume 二月梅

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