Brothers don’t shake hands…brothers gotta hug!

November 30, 2008

I was split on whether to write this week’s article about another current event  I’ve been reading about, or to go the holiday route and talk about something that came up this past weekend during our annual Thanksgiving celebration.

            And although both are timely, I’ll leave the current event article for a future date, as I’m sure it’ll still be debated and relevant in the weeks to come.

            All right, so….Thanksgiving.

            I smoked a turkey…yeah, it was awesome.  We did have 24 people here, ballooning over the last few weeks to include people I’ve never even met before.  However, the ones I had met were fans of poker, and while it’s not a holiday tradition by any means, from time to time we’ll carve out an hour or two and clear off the leftover corn kernels from the tablecloth so we can get a game going.

            Now this brings me to my dilemma, or more accurately my awkward observation…which is I’m actually uncomfortable playing cards with my family.

            I can’t take money from them.

            It has nothing to do with their financial status…has nothing to do with how much we’re playing for, either, or that it’s the holiday season and I should somehow allow that to affect my judgment and “nice” bone.

            I don’t have a nice bone anyway.  I have a naughty bone, but that’s definitely a different article, one I’ll never write on this Web site.

            Anyway, I think the reason is it just doesn’t feel right wagering anything among family members.

            It’s a weird and out-of-character experience for me, since I’ve never had trouble matching stakes against my best of friends.  I’ll gladly take their money or contribute to their videogame fund with a sigh or a smile.

            But for some reason it’s different with family.   Especially my wife’s family.  They’re such good people, and really know the meaning of family.  The coming together just to see everybody, and all that storybook crap.

            Strike a chord in ya, don’t it?  Well, enough of one in me to have to start thinking about backing out of games.

            And it’s not like we’re playing for gas money here.  Sometimes we’re not even playing for pennies, it’s marshmallows and chocolate truffles this year. 

            But hell, it’s their marshmallows and chocolate truffles…and who am I to let a few boats come between my brother in law and his dessert, right?

            For Christmas, I’ll have to do a better job of pre-planning activities to fill the extra time instead of gambling.  Guitar Hero and Rock Band are always strong fallbacks…and since there’s kids around, those do-it-yourself gingerbread houses are a sure hit, as well.

            And, the wise decision would most likely be not giving any decks of cards as gifts from St. Nick….

            ….or Hannukah Harry.