Bingo and Life

Q. What is better than playing Turkey Bingo in November?
A. Playing Turkey Bingo TWICE in November.

This past weekend, we were once again testing our Bingo luck in hopes of winning a turkey. Only this time, we had to travel up north. After my St. Mary Knights of Columbus council hosted Turkey Bingo on Nov. 13, another parish in the Spokane Diocese recently took its turn. My parents’ church, St. Thomas More, held its version of the popular Knights of Columbus fundraiser on Sunday.

What made this particular outing special was that all Resers participated. The four in my clan, my parents, my sister and her kids, and my brother and his wife all assembled in the St. Thomas More parish center to play some Sunday Bingo. We pushed a couple of tables together, ordered a bunch of popcorn, and sprawled our cards in front of us.

A portion of us Resers who played Bingo on Sunday.

One fact about Bingo is that it can be stressful. Have you ever sat on the end of your seat needing only one number to win? As others in the hall also await for their winning number to be called, the nervous energy can become overwhelming. If the next number isn’t what you need, surely someone else will yell “BINGO!” followed by the caller uttering those dreaded words: Clear your cards.

Sidney playing some Turkey Bingo at St. Thomas More Parish in north Spokane.

I am not exaggerating, for a game typically stereotyped as an old person’s activity, Bingo can pack a lot of anxiety. I surely felt it on Sunday. After an afternoon of playing some extremely cold cards, I found myself knocking on the door during the second half of the event. Needing just G-49 to notch a victory, I held my breath as the caller announced several other numbers. Luck was on my side as I successfully dodged those bullets with no one hollering out that five-letter word. When the caller did end up calling my new favorite number, all of my built-up energy and anxious anticipation was released when I enthusiastically blurted out that magic word.

Not only did I win, my wife ended up winning too. We were given Rosauers gift cards to purchase our turkeys…although we will probably use the funds to buy cookies and beer instead.

As I exercised yesterday, I reflected on my Bingo experience from the previous day. I thought more about the stress induced from playing the silly game. I contrasted it with other events in life that require people to wait for their number to be called—adoptions, organ donations, medical trials, etc.

Although I have played many a games of Bingo and felt that “stress,” I have never had to sit on pins and needles waiting for a call about whether we were selected to adopt a baby or whether a loved one will receive a new heart. I figured that the feeling of Bingo anxiety might be very slightly relatable to that of an actual life event if you multiplied it by a million.

Are you someone who is waiting to yell “BINGO” with all your might when it comes to something that actually matters? Are you on a list or part of a lottery system that holds real life implications? If so, please know that I am thinking of you and praying for you. Don’t Blink.

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