Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Soup or Football

   A cheer went up around the bar as Percy Harvin returned Denver's second-half kick-off to put the Seahawks up twenty-nine to zip.
   "Wow ... that was amazing," said Eb.
   "Sure puts the Broncos in the hole," said Hank.
   Uncle Billy shook his head. "There goes a hundred bucks."
   As the furor in Reggies died down, I turned to Billy. "You put money on the game, Uncle?"
   "Of course ... who could watch this over-hyped spectacle if you didn't?"
   I looked around the table. "Hey, does anyone, besides Billy, have a bet on the game?"
   Several heads shook no. Hank said, "Sports are too unpredictable to bet on."
   "Besides," said Becky, "who has the money?"
   "Not me," laughed Dottie.
   "Who cares about the game, anyway," said Cheryl, "I just watch for the commercials ... and the half-time show."
   "What a bunch of light-hitters," said Billy.
   "Well, it's not like the Lions are in the Superbowl," I said.
   That brought a round of sighs and groans.
   "Don't get me started," said Hank.
   "When did you get a chance to place a bet, Uncle ... you haven't been to the Casino lately."
   Billy shook his head. "Didn't need to go ... Mike took my bet."
   "Mike Burczyk?" I asked.
   "How many 'Mikes' do I know?" said Billy.
   "Mike Burczyk is a bookie?" asked Hank.
   Billy snorted. "No, he's not a bookie ... he told me after bowling on Thursday that he was going to the casino on Friday and I asked him to place a bet on the game for me."
   Eb scratched his head. "Doesn't that kinda make him a bookie?"
   Billy ignored the comment. "He was sure Denver was going to win."
   "So was everyone else," said Dottie.
   "That's gotta be tough, Bill ... to lose a hundred bucks, I mean," said Hank.
   Billy took a drink of his beer and said, "I just hope that's all I lose."
   "What do you mean, Uncle?"
   A mild cheer went up around the bar.
   I swung around to look at the television screen. "What happened?"
   "Denver got a first down," said Becky.
   Billy laughed. "Gee ... I better not tear up this ticket just yet."