taking the passive out of passive-aggressive

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

I bought a scratch-off ticket tonight at the liquor store near Marcie's house. She'd paid for my drinks all night, which was just too sweet, and so I felt lucky.

I don't buy these things very often, maybe twice year, and even then I only buy the BINGO scratch-offs, because they require work. (OK, OK, to be perfectly honest, you can just buy a scratch-off and actually not scratch anything off of it, handing it instead to the store clerk to run the barcode through the machine, but that's not fun.) My sister had showed me the glory of scratch-offs when I was twenty, living in her attic, and learning how to be a human being. I dunno why part of the training, in between workouts and dish-doing, included the lottery, but I guess she figured I was entitled to some fun. Anyway, I always won SOMETHING, as long as I didn't buy them very often, and so I started to see scratch-offs as part of that Giant Hand of Fate. You know, the one hovering over me all the time. And I decided that whenever I felt it was the "right time", I would buy me a Bingo scratch-off.

Well, tonight I only won three dollars. But, as usual, I did win. Still, it was nothing compared to the glee I felt one night with Nick, when I bought a scratch-off from the Korean's in the lobby of my office building and won fifty bucks. That night, I met him out somewhere and told him I was buying, because hell, I'd won scratch-offs!

Now, he has always disapproved of this side of me--the redneck side, you know, the side that unironically loves Miller High Lifes and low-rent gambling, the side of me that disdains the idea of free will--but even he was taken in by the idea of free money. So he promptly marches off to the Royal Farms to spend my winnings on more scratch offs because dammit, we were on fire that night! We were lucky! Well, needless to say, we lost a bunch of money, maybe half of the fifty I'd won, and so we learned a hard lesson that even the most seasoned gamblers forget. Kenny Rogers said it best: you gotta know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away, know when to run.

Anyway, tonight, inspired by my reckless abandon, as I threw away two dollars on a worthless piece of cardboard, Marcie decided she wanted scratch-offs too. But she didn't want the difficult kind--she bought two of the instantaneous kind, the kind that only require a moment's scratching. And lost. The young man behind the counter, in his Sean John t-shirt, laughed giddily as he threw the scratch offs in the trash. "Losers!" he said. I hope he wasn't talking about us.


At 6:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now, I didn't buy the easy ones because they were easy but because they had clever names. Have you seen the new Valentine's Day themed one, the Scratchelor?

At 5:53 PM, Blogger chang said...

Further proof you're from the south. Cheap beer and scratch tickets... Why, you could actually be from Massachusetts!

Nah, you tallk too funny.


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