What card game does George play in Of Mice and Men?
In chapters two and three, George is first playing solitaire and then plays a game called euchre with the laborer Whit. Obviously, because of its name, solitaire is generally a game played alone. George's constant playing of solitaire helps strengthen two of Steinbeck's themes in the novella. First, it indicates that, despite his friendship with Lennie, he is essentially a lonely man. His relationship with Lennie is mostly that of a caretaker and he has to be constantly vigilant of Lennie's actions because the big man often does things which are not socially acceptable. Second, the playing of cards suggests the ideas of chance and fate. In a card game, luck is essential. Any card could turn up at a given point in the game. Unfortunately for George and Lennie, their arrival at the ranch will prove that fate is very much in control of their lives. While some things are lucky (Candy will contribute money to the farm), they run into bad luck in the form of Curley and his wife. Lennie's fight with Curley foreshadows more trouble which will ultimately lead to Lennie's death at George's hands and the shattering of George's dream of owning his own farm.
George initially plays a game of solitaire and then plays a short game of euchre with Whit before going back to playing solitaire by himself. George's games of solitaire and euchre metaphorically represent his life's trajectory throughout the novella. Before George became friends and traveled with Lennie, he was alone, which is represented by his first game of solitaire. George then began to travel the country as a migrant worker with Lennie, which is represented by the two-player game of euchre with Whit. After a lynch mob attempts to harm Lennie for accidentally murdering Curley's wife, George is forced to shoot his best friend. Unfortunately, George will have to travel throughout the country without Lennie's company for the remainder of his life, which is represented by his final game of solitaire.
George also began to play a game of euchre with Whit, but Whit quickly lost interest so he went back to solitaire.