I had to drink two martinis and take a long hot soak to calm down last evening, but I managed to calm down…and for that, I am very proud.
I’m not sure I made the martinis correctly, they consisted of pretty much plain vodka. Is that really how they’re made? No wonder I like them so much.
On the way to pick up my mom some groceries yesterday, I heard a strange noise creaking in the wind. I turned to see it was an Illinois Lottery swivel sign. I took it as a mystical sign that if I play the lottery, I will win.
After all, it happened once before when I was about to lose my cool.
Mom had locked herself out of her house, in her pajamas, and I was on my way to a funeral. I ended up having to take my mom to the funeral with me, her in her pajamas.
I know when these things happen, it’s not her fault. Even I lock myself out of the house more than I’d like to admit, but never in my pajamas.
Anyhow, can you imagine what a relief it was to go from frustratingly ANGRY with my mom, to ecstatic about my winnings? I had bought two tickets, and offered one to Mom, who declined, saying she was bad luck. I gladly took the liberty and as I scratched the first ticket with a coin and saw that I was the winner of $25,
and then $50
I ran back into the station to retrieve my claims, and the attendant ushered out $100 from the register! I involuntarily held my mouth open in a circular shape and started hooting like an owl, a challenged one.
Mom said it was my reward from God for being so nice to her. So now, that’s always incentive to keep being nice to Mom (of course I love her too, but if the Lotto Gods are paying attention, I’ll trade a smile for a couple bucks any day).
Struggling to keep my head and wondering if maybe the Lotto Gods were watching, and the creaking omen of the sign in the wind, signifying that the time was right, and thinking that maybe I had accumulated enough be-nice-to-mom-points against, I’m-gonna-break-GOD-PLEASE-show-me-a-sign-you-exist-or-I’m-running-to-the-river kind of threats, I pull up to a station. I look over the stacked clear plastic boxes, finding one that felt HOT to my eyes.
The HOT one was $20, no thanks. I chose a $2 ticket, one that depicted the same pot of gold that was flashed around on the spin sign.
I came home with the groceries and mom was crying. She was sitting on my brother’s bed like a little girl, legs out in front of her, head in her hands, tiny white socks on her feet, hair all awry, grey and white at the roots.
What would you want to happen differently Mom?
I gave her a few scenarios to choose from. We decided we got the best deal on things. It’s not an easy deal, and I shudder and tear up as I write that, but if we couldn’t have the Good Old American Family Dream, then at least we’ve got a golden cast of characters to perservere through Our Dear American Catastrophe.
I’ve decided not to take it all so seriously anymore. My friend told me I was in denial. I told her I’m fairly certain it’s the only way I will be able to cope.
She then said, “I don’t know how you turned out so normal.”
In where I replied in defense, “I’m not normal, I throw stuff, I kick stuff, I break and I want to give a stern middle finger to the world and scream, ‘It’s not fucking fair assholes!’”.
She sat back into ease and looked at me like it was all finally making sense and said, “Oh yes, I’ve seen you do that before.”
How much was your biggest win and what do you think was behind the bargain, pure luck or karma?