I was living in Chicago at the time, tending bar at K’s Dugout which was nothing more than a Cop-Shop – a bar located across from the 20th Precinct of the Chicago Police Department. I wasn’t working that night which means I was on the other side of the bar so when my roommate walked/ran (no cell phones at this point) up to the bar at 10:00pm on a Friday night to tell me that I HAD to call my mother I just knew someone had died so I was freaking out. And freaking out when you’re 22 and half-lit is not fun. So I did what any good daughter would do.. I told the bartender to “watch my drink” and ran home to call my mother.
Turns out no one had died but she had, in fact, had a heart attack because she HAD WON A CAR!! Oh my God, she was SO excited and my reaction was – you made me run home to call you, in the middle of the night, scared half to death because you WON A CAR??!
I obviously missed getting the shock and awe gene where you say exactly the right thing at the right time. I’ve tried to get better over the years.
Since that big win, she made contesting a serious hobby/job of hers. People are always amazed and jokingly ask “what’s your mom won lately” but she puts a boat load of time into the job. Way back in the day before I convinced her to take the internet plunge, she would sit for HOURS filling out envelopes and postcards… strategically going thru her sweepsheets and determining which contests she really wanted to win and which ones would be an okay win. Her Christmas list would include things like stamps, envelopes and postcards which my Dad would gladly supply her with while he was alive.
She’s won trips, jewelry, gold coins, enough t-shirts to clothe a small town, TVs, iPods, an iPad, a giant Nascar gas can, beach towels and a bazillion other things that I could never keep up with. Lucky for me, she has a small library of scrapbooks documenting all her wins which will make for memorable and lovely reading for years to come long after she’s gone. I have said that the only thing she hasn’t won is a major cash prize and knowing her, it’s just a matter of time before that happens.
You would think that I would take after her in the passion for contesting but as I mentioned, she puts a TON of time into and that kind of time is just not something that I have a lot of. But I do dabble and have won a few things myself.. most notably the amazing trip that the Rooster and I went on last September to Big Cedar Lodge for an entire weekend of fishing with some famous anglers. Which of course, I entered because Little Mama sent it to me. If I don’t say it myself, she’ll say it in the comments so there you have it..
I’m proud of her and her wins and it excites me when she wins something because of the sheer joy it brings her. I know she was always so excited to share the big news with my Dad when she won something, and now that he’s gone I have really tried to up my game and reaction from when she won her first car back in 1990.
Yeah.. I said her first car… because you see…
..that photo at the top?
That was the THIRD car she’s won.
She’s lucky and I’m proud 🙂