(a.k.a. Zardoz) Elias Palmer Hellige. His true name.
The official band of Bridge Night. Simple enough really. It's more than a feeling. (Song Break)
Box, The
The preferred cards for Bridge Night are kept in a small, black, plastic box in the dining room sideboard. In addition to the cards, there is a fund administered by The Box. Funds are paid to The Box whenever the sum of the monies contributed to pay for dinner that night exceeds the amount needed to pay the delivery driver.

The Box pays no interest and the purpose of the funds remains unclear. A party at the Drake Hotel is anticipated, but the required amount for such an endeavor is unknown. Why the Drake? Because Chris Ege said so. Any questions? I thought not.

Borrowing or theft from The Box is of course strictly forbidden. Though making change from The Box is acceptable. It is considered customary to pay The Box a convenience fee on the order of 5-10% when exchanging money.

Because The Box pays no interest and therefore represents an inefficient allocation of capital, it serves as a source of annoyance to Randian-Libertarians, a great benefit.

Haskell Reading Group
(a.k.a. HRG) Another mailing list on the immute server that ostensibly concerns matters relating to Haskell programming.

Lords of Lore
(a.k.a. LOL) A reading group devoted to science fiction and fantasy. The Lords have a library, a blog, meetings, a mailing list, and other props. Endless discussions about the correctness of the terms genre fiction and literary fiction are the order of the day.

Psychic Five Match Sprint Bridge
An improved version of the game of bridge that requires five players.

Psychic Five solves one of the basic problems of standard bridge, viz.: your partner is the only person you have a reason to be mad at. And then only when your partner does something stupid. In Psychic Five, you routinely have reasons to be mad at any or all of the other four players.

Riding the Dan
While Boston is the official band of Bridge Night (see above), we acknowledge the existence of other great music in the history of the world. We note the greatness of Steely Dan.

Others have noted the band's greatness. In particular, when John Davy was tending bar in Champaign years ago, there was a regular, a creepy old dude who would come in and drink and tell a story to John. The story was always the same. It was the history of Steely Dan. It concerned how Donald Fagan would find his muse by vigorous masturbation aided by a particular sexual device, named the Steely Dan. Donald Fagan would later repay his debt to this device by naming his band, the greatest band of all time, after it.

What does this have to do with Bridge Night? Don't ask stupid questions.

Usage Note: This should be spoken in a gravelly, low, hoarse voice, in homage to John's impersonation of the creepy old dude.

Ropes, The
What does every woman want?

Now, first of all, I don't want to hear anything from the literal-universalist crowd. I know every woman doesn't want the same damn thing. Despite Witold's theory that a lesbian is just a woman who hasn't met a man who made her ovaries pop (a theory that probably has as many problems with correctness as political correctness), I know that there are lesbians out there, and women who want other things who aren't even lesbians.

Nevertheless, I ask, what does every woman want? And I think we all know. You know. She wants a man who can produce voluminous, thick, rich, lustrous streams of ejaculate. The Ropes is a dietary supplement for men that can help to turn the pitiful grey ooze of snot you call come into a healthy load of full-fat Greek yogurt suitable for a porn shoot.

Don't believe me? Look into it.

Uncle Chen's
The official and most preferred condiment of Bridge Night.

Sadly, due to quality control issues (too much salmonella in the mix), Uncle Chen's is no longer available for purchase.

Photo credit: Jen Palmer Hellige.

Usage Note: That shit is spicy!

Unterman Tens
It's called Bridge Night goddammit. Anyone who thinks we don't take that avocation seriously is unaware of the advances in the theory of the game that have been made by our resident expert, Josh Unterman.

Antiquated traditionalists of the game still insist on the antediluvian point-counting methodology: A=4, K=3, Q=2, J=1, perhaps even with disclaimers about how this count may undervalue aces, and overvalue jacks, or even about how the individual shape of the hand is a more relevant criteria in hand evaluation. Wusses.

Thanks to Josh's guidance, at Bridge Night, we recognize the value of tens. It's conventional to give yourself an extra half-point for each 10 in your hand. We likewise recognize the value of the sequence 9-10-J. Shit, you're holding *-9-10-J in a no trump hand, you gotta think that is going to win you a trick, right? Especially if your partner is holding a queen or something.

If you're holding all four 10s, it is more-or-less obligatory to open the bidding somewhere, regardless of other cards in your hand. I mean, four tens, that's gotta be good for something.

Wright, Jeff
A mythical creature. Many doubt his existence. Unreliable reports have placed him at certain weddings and other gatherings of import.