Judge Ford thinks that Westing is insulting her personally with the clues because they have a past together.
There are several clues in this chapter that Judge Ford knew Samuel Westing well. First of all, look how she reacts to the word “cousin.” Then, Judge Ford questioned Westing’s sanity, and complained about being a “pawn” in the “foolish game” and especially having to listen to “minstrel show dialect.” (Ch. 6). She thinks that he is insulting her personally with the game’s script.
Judge Ford does not have much faith in her doorman partner or the game. He asks her not to quit because of “nonsensical words,” saying that he would lose his pension. Again, she acts like she was paired with a loser, for whom she holds no pity. She also feels that the clues are directly written for her.
Judge J. J. Ford had no doubt that the clues she shared with the doorman were meant for her, but Sam Westing could toss off sharper results than:
SKIES AM SHINING BROTHER (Ch. 6)
When it comes to interpreting the clues. she also seems to know Westing. The judge believes that Westing was not murdered, because if his life was in danger he would have contacted the police. She’s using her knowledge of him and his personality to determine that. She also believes that that dimwitted clues are part of a longer statement. She has agreed to play his game. She knows the kind of man he is.
Judge Taylor has a past. We do not know at this point what it is yet. However, it is clear that Sandy has one too. It is interesting that the two are paired together, given that she knows Westing so well!