Monday, February 20, 2012
"Do things that make you feel awkward and uncomfortable." That's a good motto for everyone. It forces you to have experiences that you might not, and you get to find out about yourself as well as the world around you that you might not have otherwise.
That's how I found myself in the basement of a Catholic school in Staten Island, terrified that an old person was going to yell at me. Eddie and his mom assured me they would help me out, but also agreed there was a chance that someone would yell at me.
We were playing BINGO. When we walked in, the two of them got sheets and markers and I had no idea what was going on. There were also side bets and all kinds of other wagers that could be taken, and I was completely lost. They were like, don't worry. Ok, I didn't worry, but I was still confused.
BINGO seems like a very simple game. Get five across, down, or diagonally, and you win. Nope, that's not all. There's also four corners, round robin, and full board. You can also win a line. The number comes up on a screen and then gets called out loud afterwards.
When the caller is too slow, someone will help her or him to speed up by yelling things like, Shake a leg!
When the caller is too fast, well, the caller is never to fast. Only for me. I kept my mouth shut and let Eddie and his mom review my sheet. One game was going so fast that I didn't even realize I had only one number left to win. Actually, no matter what speed, I didn't know if I was near winning. I was too focused on getting all the numbers right. I didn't want to yell out BINGO and be wrong and have everyone yell at me.
When the air conditioning goes on, everyone gets loud. It's not a pleasant loud. It's a complaining loud. The a/c makes noise. The a/c is too cold.
I need a troll. Remember those troll dolls with the colorful wild hair? Some woman had one. She rubbed it before winning a big round.
I need photos and stuffed animals. The first winner of the night had a bunch of frames and dolls set up all around her board.
Someone needed a money sandwich. They called out that they had extra sandwiches and that's the response they got and everyone laughed.
Old people are funny.
FYI: we were the youngest people there. We here includes Eddie's mom. She was at least a decade younger than the youngest of the other people.
Not one of the three of us won any money. I didn't have to yell out BINGO and risk being yelled at. Phew!
Fast forward to five o'clock in the morning after BINGO. I'm awakened by a shooting pain in my left arm. It's all achy. I can't seem to shake it off. I'm twisting it and turning it and nothing seems to alleviate the pains. I'm all discombobulated. I'm thinking about the workout I'd done the day before and what I could have possibly done to my arm. Then it clicks. BINGO! Three hours of stamping and my arm goes south. How do these old people do it?