Tom Kysilko pds at VISI.COM
Wed Mar 6 05:54:16 UTC 2002

>>From: GSCole <gscole at>
>>Subject: ..skunked..
>>". . . said she knew I could play better, if I would try; and set her
>>chequers again.  But again I had no better success--she 'skunked' me a
>>second time."

In an on-line version of Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (G & C.
Merriam Co., 1913, edited by Noah Porter), we find:
Skunk, v. t. In games of chance and skill: To defeat (an opponent) (as in
cards) so that he fails to gain a point, or (in checkers) to get a king.
[Colloq. U. S.]

I doubt that it's possible to lose at checkers without taking a single
piece, especially since the rules require players to take a piece if it is
positioned to be taken.

In cribbage (the way I was taught it) to skunk an opponent means to peg
through all the holes in the board before the opponent has pegged through
three-quarters of the holes plus one (ie has entered "fourth street").
Here too it is next to impossible to fail to score at all no matter how
dismal the loss.  So the skunk bar has to be reset.

  Tom Kysilko        Practical Data Services
  pds at       Saint Paul MN USA

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