Pocker Night

It’s nigh on the bewitching hour: that time just after I should be going to bed and just before the Holy Ghost will be going to bed. The Mexican boy down the way, in consistency with the rest of the world, waits to erupt without warning into the living room until I have removed any trace of makeup and traded out the clothes I would be comfortable seen in public with for baggy, stained sweatpants and a delicious Snuggy. My hair is in a messy bun that makes Lady Gaga look like she is having a great hair day and my slippers exude Eau de Hobo Steve.

Taking my blank stare as a warm invitation to share his hush-hush secrets, he looks slowly around the room as if to scan out any government spies or evangelical leaders. Far from the low tones I expect, he grins and bears his mission statement with enthusiasm:

“I am a here to invite you to play the Pocker in my apartment,” he beams. “Do not worry, we only play for candy. Texas Hold, I think. You should all come.”

Taking my blank stare as one of excitement and agreement, he gave me the thumbs up and promptly spun out of our front room, no doubt in search of other eager female gamblers.

I thought of my new motto stenciled above the closet:

“You are a strong, independent woman, and you only need your boots to complete you.”

One challenging look from my ultra-conservative apartmentmates later, I traded out my slippers for my boots, nodded a “good evening,” and marched, chin-up, down to the hideaway.

A quick survey of the dimly lit kitchen afforded me approving nods and candy-hungry scans from the Relief Society President, her probably high up on the Elders’ Quorum foodchain boyfriend, and several guys who I knew lived there but had never seen before in church. “Slept in,” "Lost my Sunday Shoes,” and "Mormon Hangover" were their names. The latter gave me a glazed grin over the top of his 2-Liter of Dr. Pepper. 

The winnings were borderline substantial. Hershey's new Air Delight line is a joke, but not as much as the "Fun Sized" movement.

Our Poker Faces won Dottie and me further invites the following Sunday, but the line must be drawn somewhere. Sorry, no gambling on the Sabbath.

postscript: I had a Thanksgiving post ready, but after eating my way through my fourth chocolate pie it kind of fell through the cracks. Nonetheless, I'd like to say I'm grateful for a mother who shoots vaccine up my arm for freeeee. Flu free for five years and counting o'er here. Food baby for four days and counting o'er here.

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