Once a month, I play poker.
It’s a long story. I played poker with members of my dad’s family from when I was little until I was a teenager and they all became born-again Christians and decided that God frowned on a flush beating a straight. My dad played poker with a group of other local school administrators, and when I was grown up and back home he’d invite me to play when he hosted. Eventually I became the group’s first Permanent Female Member. I’m the youngest by at least 20 years, which is nice because that isn’t often the case for me any more. We now have two women in the group, and the guys like to bitch about how they used to win once in a while, until they let all those females in… 😀
The group has 6 members, and we take turns hosting.Tonight is my turn. But here’s the thing.
- A year ago, the evening I hosted, our golden retriever went into a seizure that we couldn’t bring her out of. We called our veterinarian, who told us to bring her to the clinic (at 10:00 p.m.) and he’d meet us there. Our guests left early, and we spent an hour at the clinic while the vet pumped increasing amounts of valium and phenobarbitol into our golden girl until she finally relaxed. It was a scary night. (The dog is now on maintenance meds, although she still seizures occasionally.)
- Six months ago, when I hosted, it was the night before school started. Part way through the evening, my daughter called me into the living room to say that it hurt her to pee. Shades of horrible, UTI-cursed, pre-child-bearing years of my life: I knew what it meant. Called various urgent care centers; all closed. Called our pediatrician; she refused to call in a prescription, saying we should bring C to her office the next day. The first day of school. C was frantic. Called Humana’s nurse line, where a saintly woman gave me an authorization number to take C to the ER. Our card-playing guests once again went home early. Spent a couple of not-too-awful hours at the ER and came home with prescriptions, so all was well.
I don’t believe in Fate, Destiny, Bad Karma, etc. But you know, these things come in threes… Will a blizzard knock out all power in the region? Will one of the kitties fall over, deathly ill? Will my son fall off his bike and break his arm? Or will the night be crisis free?
Wish me luck — and I wouldn’t mind winning some money, either!