The Winner

“Winner! Winner! We have a winner!”

The ebullient sound of victory could be heard above the constant drone of the casino. In fact, the level of noise tempered slightly as gamers paused to take in the sight of a bald man at the roulette table with both arms raised in victory. His jaw dropped as he surveyed the enormity of the winnings before him – knowing this event completely changed his future. With tears in his eyes, he watched as stack after stack of chips were raked toward him by a portly croupier who seemed a sour fellow.

Several employees were summoned to help the bald man collect his good fortune so he could cash out. Each was tipped handily by the generous winner, none so much as the hand that had spun the wheel. The croupier’s attitude improved as his pockets bulged under the weight of the gift.

When the tally was exchanged for legal tender, the winner searched out a quiet place to rejoice and contemplate his haul. Beyond the rows of gaming tables sat an open bar that looked somewhat removed from the madness. The buzz of the casino resumed and seemed to have forgotten the interruption that had occurred just moments before. Aside from a few congratulations on his way to the bar, most of the gamers had already moved on from his win as they gave their concentration wholly over to chips, dice, and cards. Read More

Where I stand (Flip-Flops & Blue Jeans)

Sometimes, a seemingly insignificant event shows you exactly where you stand. This happened to me Sunday as I dressed for church.

As a male in my late forties, fashion eludes me. I could lie and say that I used to be on top of the latest trends, but photographic evidence would sell me out. Even though I see the genius of old-man high-waist pants and I yearn for the day when Sansabelt makes a comeback, I keep those opinions to myself and try to blend in. That’s my wheelhouse and my fashion goal – Not Standing Out. NSO makes me feel like I can make the women in my life happy.

NSO starts with the purchase decisions. The women weren’t there for buying of the kilt, two dozen Hawaiian shirts, or impact ties and the aforementioned items are strictly verboten. I still keep them in my closet, but if I want to wear them I have to low-crawl out of the house to escape notice. (Low-crawling in a properly worn kilt can cause distinctive carpet burns.) Most of my purchases get disgusted looks and upturned noses from the daughters. Every once in a while I get raised shoulders and an ambivalent “meh” – which I interpret to mean I have struck fashion gold. I live for a “meh”. Read More