To be honest with you, Reader, earlier in my life I had judgments about people who played bingo night after night.  

Sitting for hours at a time in close proximity to overly-perfumed ladies and farting old men who yelled out the news of their win like some country auctioneer selling farm equipment never appealed to me. That is until Trixie taught me the finer points of life.

The first summer Trixie and I dated, we took my nieces and nephews to bingo as a favor to their parents. I was doing my normal shenanigans to entertain the troops when suddenly I noticed that my card was filling up in a vertical line and I was one number away from that magical event known as “winning.”

Now Ol' Dutch suddenly became interested in the numbers the barker was calling and after a few anxious moments she called B-8. I had a bingo. A quick check of my card for accuracy took place all the while I was sweating like a new father outside the birthing room.

The prize money of $12 was ceremoniously waved high above my head and I found myself sitting like Cooper, my yorkie, begging for a treat. And that is how I entered the bingo winners’ circle.

Trixie did her usual and won several pots and three door prizes and our table won 11 out of 18 games for the night. Not bad for a bunch of amateurs is it?

Thus began a legacy that has lasted until today. Now for those of you who would rather sit at home and watch TV claiming that it costs more to play bingo than you win, shame on you. How can you pass up the opportunity to see people of every make and model making complete fools out of themselves in every way imaginable?

It’s a sideshow at best and fun to watch people having a good time. Kids get lost, tables and chairs fall down, women screech giving their neighbors heart attacks, food and drink goes down in huge quantities, grandparents spoil their visiting grand kids and dogs wander in from the street.

We won’t even mention the announcements made from the podium other than to say that one caller brags about washing his balls twice a year bringing 12-year-old boys to their knees in fits of laughter.

One thing I have noticed, though, is that no matter where you are playing often the same numbers always come up.

Whether this is due to the weight of the balls themselves or residue on them from the caller’s hands I have no idea but always get a card with O-75.

Trixie and I have really become experts at the game and seem to win more regularly than those around us.

Last year at Creede we won so much that an old man threatened to throw me in the creek. I ended that night with a $145 blackout jackpot and had to call 911 for a police escort to my car as old ladies were set to attack me with their marking dabbers.

I have found that a slow and methodical approach to the game somehow brings Karma to my soul. Not so with Trixie. She is wound up tighter than a nine day clock during the entire event and takes it upon herself to not only watch her cards but mine, too. She also robs Ol’ Dutch from proclaiming his own success. And that is a shame as I have been known to stand and sing the old song we all learned in grade school about Bingo the Dog.

My kids were fed up with hearing about our bingo monopoly. So, last Christmas they purchased a Bingo game for us all to play --- with one twist. They covertly gave Trixie and me the same cards and then proceeded to remove the majority of numbers on our cards so that there was only one possible bingo on them. The scene was thus set to upstage two old pros. Trixie and I, unknowingly, settled down to play a game that was stacked against us.

Numbers were called until finally – yes you guessed it – Trixie and I won. A huge uproar took place as they all were in on the joke to break our streak and hence our winning spirit.

With laughter all-around they had to concede that yes indeed Trixie and Dutch were professionals after all.

So if you visit the local parlors for bingo entertainment, take a quick look around and if you see us there, take your money back home and enjoy another episode of Matlock because we’re destined to be winners.