World Class Bingo Player


Grandma would be the organizer of the grand-kids bingo games and we all sat around the kitchen table, each of us grand-kids watching one or two bingo cards and buttons to place on the cards. The stakes were high to us. Each bingo game winner received a penny! We thought that was just exorbitant. You could then pile up your winnings or pennies next to where you played. Orange sodas were all around the table in various stages of being emptied.

My Grandma was a world class bingo player. She loved to play bingo and her sons and daughters (my aunts and uncles) would often drive her to local bingo places, churches etc. She had quite a reputation and her house were filled with prizes that she would often give away as gifts. She had one entire room in a second story bedroom filled with her prizes. She just loved to play bingo and would play for hours on end or until the bingo establishment closed. She had strong Italian accent but would often teach me about American history. She not only had excellent knowledge about the history of our country but was extremely proud of it. Because my first name was Thomas, she had nicknamed me “Thomas Jefferson” with the emphasis on the son, thus pronounced Thomas JefferSON. She would often give a good history lesson to us grandkids when we were in her house. Her house was neat and spotless. Every item or knickknack was professionally arranged with a hand knitted do lie under it. She went to spectacular lengths to spoil us all with her great cooking, Italian cookies like Pizzelles and ever-present orange soda. We would often beg our parents to let us go on “vacation” to her house for a week. That week was paradise with superb food, great stories, sleeping late and non-stop games of bingo. No one ever seemed to misbehave or act out.

I was amazed at Grandmas bingo skills. She would often watch a dozen or more bingo cards of her own. You could tell that she was really concentrating and enjoying the bingo game. At the same time, she would look at or audit your cards and help you out if you missed a number! He never rebuked you if you missed a number but just smiled, sort of winked, and put a button on the missed number. You could tell that she really loved to play bingo. The good part was so did we enjoy it, and never tired of playing!

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