Brett’s Corner – May 2007

Welcome to Brett’s Corner – a monthly column by the 2006 Bingo Caller Of The Year and GalaTV caller.

All The Luck Of The Balls…

Bingo superstitions. They’re a strange thing aren’t they? Every time I play bingo at my local club I always try and buy my tickets for the game as late as possible, and I have no idea why I do this! I have been involved in bingo for 7 years and I know that there is no possible way of predicting which tickets will win on which game; and yet I still wait until the last possible moment to purchase my tickets.

And there was a while that I had a lucky dabber that I used whenever I played as well. It was a green one (not my favourite colour – I am a fan of the red dabber) and I won £100 using it once. So I used it again and again until it ran out, even though I didn’t win on it again, that was my lucky green dabber! And that is exactly how it is for most of us who play this wonderful game.

Why are bingo players like this? I used to have a player who would arrive at the bingo two hours before the session started and queued to get the very first tickets. And then she would dash back home and give the kids there dinner and come back later?! Think of all that effort! And she had just as much luck as the next person on her games. Another player would always turn up with the same top on every time they came to bingo as it was the top they were wearing when they won the link house 3 years ago!

And what is it with lucky seats?! In my club I can guarantee which players will sit in which seats. And woe betide any new player that sits in a regular’s seat! I have seen many a heated conversation involving players laying claim to a particular area. Bingo players are very territorial in many ways. I know of players who purposefully sit at a table where a customer the night before won a lot of money on (the interval game party bingo boards) because they think doing so will make them win big too!

Trust me, this rant is going somewhere! The reason I am flagging up superstitious players is that it’s another one of the many reasons I like working and playing this great game of bingo: I find it reassuring that I know that Edna always sits at table 100 and that Gladys’s always has 5 tickets from the top (never the bottom!) It’s great that I sit at the same table when I play bingo because I like talking to the player opposite who keeps on telling me to propose to my girlfriend!

Bingo is one of the last leisure activities that has a truly social feel about it. Whether you are young or old, rich or poor, black or white; when you are in a bingo hall everybody is the same. We are all there to meet our friends, have a good time and maybe even have a win or two! So no matter what happens with the explosion in internet bingo, the introduction of bingo on the TV and the supposed doom and gloom of the forthcoming smoking ban; traditional bingo, and all the superstitions that go with it will stay with us for a long time to come!

Right, I’m off now to finalise my holiday to Las Vegas (one of the perks of winning Bingo Caller Of The Year) maybe in my next column I’ll show you the pictures!

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