Existential Reality

by | Mar 15, 2021 | Personal

Life speaks to us in patterns
Existentialists might agree
The events becoming mirrors
Allowing us to see

Things we call as hang-ups
Or blocks that hold us back
keep us from accomplishing. . .
Or throwing us off track

Last night, no exception
My sensibilities molested
Through a brief intense encounter
With my motives being tested

Late-night bingo was the place
A way to end the week
A week that showed up slow
With earning oh so meek*(1)

Despite the week behind me
Bingo called my name
As the night was free*(2)
Excluding the extra games

New faces on the landscape
Some were fairly young
As such beyond our table
Three, anything but dumb

Newcomers more than obvious
From questions heard to ask
About the task before them
Of the workers as they passed

‘Early Birds’ were half way through*(3)
Walk-in on the rise
A cool two-hundred dollars
Would be its’ single prize*(4)

Two Bingos from the early birds
Of patterns quite a few *(5)
But no paper did they have
So, control I took, as do

‘Called to the ‘paper barker’
Bought them one apiece
Three faces weren’t a lot
But experience would teach

Winning wasn’t in the cards
For neither them nor us
The early birds continued
Then a ‘candy-break’ a must!*(6)

Intermission then at half-time
We had another break
I noticed they had no Bonanzas
A four hundred dollar pot at stake

The ‘barkers’ made another trip
Three faces bought for each
Forty-five balls pre-given
The four hundred within reach

Guess you might’a guessed it
One of them had won
Second in a group of two*(7)
Two hundred made it fun

The thought fired in an instant
That maybe she would share
A twenty, just a token
And probably’d be fair

As a benefactor, happy
To be part of the event. . .
Waiting to be acknowledged
For the money I had spent

Their money came with giggles
Sixteen perhaps their age
With whispers back and forth
At last she crossed the space

Six dollars, my contribution
The cost of paper bought
Incredible, my opinion
My first and only thought

The mother was a ‘fancy Pam’
A hair-do costing much
Cute, but needed washing
Looked oily to the touch

The girls were cute, well manicured
Didn’t reflect the neighborhood
But made me feel (they) were selfish
Despite their looking good

Richard, unaware
I’d reached into my pocket
Providing them with traction
As my effort, would he ‘knock-it’

He did, as I suspected
When I told him in the car
“I hope you learned a lesson
I think you went too far”

He left the hall before me
As usual in the past
‘walk-out,’ the ending game
Never finds his shadow cast

“You should have seen their vehicle
A Hummer, Texas plates
Careless on their entry
Affecting others fate

“Selfish and self-serving
Rich bitches, in a zone
No thought for those around
In their world, alone”

The next day, it flowed over
During. . . doing Myrtles hair
Eighty-three and housebound
On Sunday our time we share

“I guess there is a lesson”\
In conclusion to the tale
Did my motives lack veracity?
Are my ethics really frail?

On and on and on I went
With my chatter of the week
She always sits in silence
‘til my stories are complete

On the way back to Richard’s house . . .
. . . I am his ‘week-end’ wife
But that’s another story
And no interest now to write

The events from the night before
Caused my memory to stir
The day that laid before me
And my agenda were a blur

Sue, the day before
Was telling of her luck
In Vicksburg at Ameristar
Of the connection, I was struck

She shares her tales of winning
While few, have I to tell
Conspiracy of the players cards*(8)
Amassing info on which to dwell

“Wonder, if I used your card
Think my luck would change?”
Grocery money in my pocket
And Vicksberg on the brain

The two thoughts then collided
Events from the night before
The thought of spending money
That’s for groceries at the store

I’d asked myself for clarity
And from the pressure, sweet relief
The two became the answer
At last, for me relief

I could take her card to Vicksberg
And plug it here and there
Help them pay their light bill
And grouse of the affair

Or use my time constructively
On this pre-Memorial Day
I was thankful for the insight
It made the pressure go away

The girl who won Bonanza
Did so on her luck
As does Sue, on-goingly
Of this thought was struck

Existential reality
As some philosophers might agree
Means living in each moment
Applauding what’s received

The program that keeps running
Like an algorithmic choice
Can easily be deleted
Giving new tone to your voice

It takes but an attitude
And disposition to be healed
Like exercise or dieting
For a new form to be revealed

Bittersweet the happiness
That causes all our pain
Unless it gives us victory
In a lifetime unrestrained

Our attitudes and emotions
The only thing we can control
They are why we’ve taken residence
In our body, as a soul

This is just conjecture
But a philosophic stand
The only thing I have of value
Would be contested by Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand believed that selfishness
Is a virtue from within
On some levels would agree
But on most would say are thin

If you come from the position
Those others can achieve
What they need in context
Empowerment would receive

For who we are in context
As in the stands we take
Affects the world around us
Of this is no mistake

So the chaos or the calmness
That stir you at last to move
Will be revealed in your daily walk
As the evidence will prove



*(1) “with earning oh so meek” meek, it turns out means somewhat
spiritless, customers were few, my income low. The week did not have me
paying bills, but I did come home with grocery money.

*(2) “As the night was free” It didn’t cost anything to play.

*(3)”Early Birds were half-way through” The Bingo Hall starts out with
what they call early birds. There are 10 games that pay $25 and there are
about seven different patterns that are considered winning combinations.
After 5 games they stop and play a game called ‘walk-in’. They sell you a
card with three faces (that’s what they call the card on which you play, a
‘face’) for a dollar. Most of the time they pay out whatever comes in on
the sale of the paper; but for Saturday, Late Night Bingo they cap it at

*(4) “Would be its’ single prize” If more than one person wins, they have
to split ‘the pot.’

*(5) “Of patterns quite a few” 7 combinations

*(6) “Then a ‘candy-break’ a must!” Since they stopped letting people
smoke in the Bingo Hall, they have what they call a ‘candy-break’ after the
early birds and pull tabs, before they start playing what’s call the
‘high-dollar’ games. That is the games that pay $100 or more

*(7) “Second in a group of two” Two people won it, so they only got $200
from the pot.

*(8)”Conspiracy of the players cards” I wonder if they use the cards to see
who wins and who doesn’t, by figuring out the gambling habits of the
patrons. Some people go, throw money at the slot machines, they may win;
but they keep shoving it back in. On the other hand, some people win, cash
out and take their winnings with them. Do they pay accordingly?

Linda Brady

Linda Brady

Grandma Linda is a squigily peg in a square hole. Her poetry is aimed at moving the world to love, unity and perfect margaritas. And after years of perfecting the art, she has the skill to paint a better world and make it so.

When she is not serving customers, gazing at rocks, or visiting her grandchildren Linda is writing poetry. And even during all the above activities she has been known to write still.

– Zackary (self proclaimed “Favorite Grandson”)