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We are a family of members twenty-four.
There used to be more,
But we threw them out the door.

Except four of them would rather stay
And I think that's okay
As long as they don't play.

Every day into five tables we split.
In the kiddie table, some sit.
But sometimes a kid doesn't quite fit.

Then with an adult, we make a swap.
And then a noise: pop!
On the floor someone drops.

Then one by one, everyone proceeds to fall.
My right-hand man can crush them all
Even though he's only 3.5 inches tall.

After all the commotion, we regroup.
Alas, again to the same level we stoop.
The events keep repeating in a loop.

Remember the guys who can't participate?
They determine the night's fate
When they say "that's enough, mate."

What kind of family are we?

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  • $\begingroup$ Does this have something to do with sports? $\endgroup$ – Victor Stafusa May 18 '18 at 0:17
  • $\begingroup$ @VictorStafusa: (rot13) cerggl fher vgf fbzrguvat gb qb jvgu purff, but then I can't make most of the clues match... $\endgroup$ – Xenocacia May 18 '18 at 5:47
  • $\begingroup$ @Xenocacia Be purpxref, gur 8k8 inevna unf 24 cvrprf. But I have the same problem with some clues. $\endgroup$ – PL457 May 18 '18 at 11:57
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Building off of @Mick O'Hea's answer, I think it's probably:

A game of Euchre

We are a family of members twenty-four. / There used to be more, / But we threw them out the door.

Standard Euchre is played with 24 cards: the Ace, King, Queen, Jack, ten, and nine of each of the four suits of a deck of playing cards. Any other cards are left in the box or, in the case of Euchre-specific decks, aren't even printed/sold at all.

Except four of them would rather stay / And I think that's okay / As long as they don't play.

A Euchre game goes to ten points, and it is tradition to use the unplayed fives of the deck to keep score. One team gets the red fives, and one the black; starting face down, points are displayed by flipping and covering one card with the other so that the number of visible shapes matches the number of points.

Every day into five tables we split. / In the kiddie table, some sit. / But sometimes a kid doesn't quite fit.

As @Mick O'Hea guessed, the five tables are when the cards are dealt into four hands of five cards each, and a central pile of four cards. The central pile is smaller than the rest, hence it is the kiddie table. [EDIT: @Chowzen points out that the central pile is called the 'kitty', which is a way better connection to have drawn, both as a sound-alike and in reference to a young one.] The kid that doesn't quite fit is the top card, which is flipped face-up at the start for the beginning of the bidding process.

Then with an adult, we make a swap. / And then a noise: pop! / On the floor someone drops.

If a bid is made in the first go-around, then there is one last process before the trick-taking starts: the dealer of that round swaps one card from their (adult) hand with that face-up central card. Now the trick-taking portion of the game begins, with each player laying down cards one at a time.

Then one by one, everyone proceeds to fall. / My right-hand man can crush them all / Even though he's only 3.5 inches tall.

@Mick O'Hea has noted the trick-taking and the 3.5 inch reference to playing cards. The "right-hand man" is a specific reference to the right Bauer/Bower trump card, which is the Jack of the trump suit and is the most powerful trump card.

After all the commotion, we regroup. / Alas, again to the same level we stoop. / The events keep repeating in a loop.

When all five tricks have been played, count them up, score the points, and then the next dealer collects the cards to be shuffled and redealt.

Remember the guys who can't participate? / They determine the night's fate / When they say "that's enough, mate."

Back to the fives that are used to score the game, which ends when a team has ten points, with both their fives face-up and uncovered.

If you like this answer, please like @Mick O'Hea's as well, since they made the major identification. This answer is just an attempt to get the finishing touch and collect it all.

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    $\begingroup$ After reading @MickO'Hea , I was going to suggest this answer. The "kiddie table" is what we referred to as the rot13(Xvggl) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 18 '18 at 14:04
  • $\begingroup$ Ah, yeah, that's better than my reasoning in a couple ways; updated the answer to add your note. $\endgroup$ – ManyPinkHats May 18 '18 at 14:10
  • $\begingroup$ Good job! That's definitely the right answer. Although I'm used to keeping score with a 4 & 6 instead of two 5's. Must be a variation. $\endgroup$ – Riley May 18 '18 at 14:18
  • $\begingroup$ Yeah, I was taught with 5s; I've seen 4&6, and I've also seen 2s-and-3s. (I don't like scoring with 2s and 3s though; it's not intuitive in the way 5s and 4&6 are.) $\endgroup$ – ManyPinkHats May 18 '18 at 14:22
  • $\begingroup$ 2's & 3's here... :) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 18 '18 at 14:35
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Partial answer

I'm fairly sure it's

Some type of card game, maybe a form of solitaire, that's played with 24 (or 28) cards? Or has that many dealt initially. The 3.5 inches high is the biggest clue to that

The five tables

could be either piles for four suits, or hands for four people, plus a central pool of cards. Cards are swapped between them

My right-hand man can crush them all / Even though he's only 3.5 inches tall.

Sounds like a trump card

Remember the guys who can't participate? / They determine the night's fate / When they say "that's enough, mate."

Some kind of stop cards that signal the end of the game when they're dealt

After all the commotion, we regroup. / Alas, again to the same level we stoop. / The events keep repeating in a loop.

A game made up of multiple tricks where the same actions are repeated. Or the whole game is repeated until someone reaches a certain score

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I like your theory. I would even add that the four that don´t play can be the aces. And when all the cards of a suit are on the corresponding ace it ends the pile : "that's enough, mate." $\endgroup$ – guillau4 May 18 '18 at 11:44
  • $\begingroup$ Nice work! Now is where the knowledge tag may come into play. Also look out for a keyword or two. $\endgroup$ – Riley May 18 '18 at 12:11
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is it a,

Snooker family !?

  • one by one, everyone proceeds to fall
  • repeating events in loop
  • splitting tables most of the phrases match
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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Sorry, that is incorrect. There is too much that isn't explained. $\endgroup$ – Riley May 18 '18 at 3:30

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