Bingo Buddy System
Dear Aunt Bingo:
I love Bingo, play weekly, wish I were luckier, but win or lose, really enjoy the whole Bingo experience.
My one problem is that in recent years I have been unable to get any of my friends or family to go to Bingo with me.
Do not misread my point—I am not a needy person. But I know from experience that it is far more fun to do an activity when you have someone along enjoying it with you.
In the past I have had several Bingo buddies who I would go to Bingo with, but for various reasons they stopped going to Bingo which is why I am now making these trips on my own.
My husband has “consented” to go with me one or two times. Unfortunately, it was only after I pestered him into it and from beginning to end it was clear that he couldn’t stand being there. This is the one scenario where I would absolutely rather go alone than have him along as a Bingo buddy!
Which leaves me with the same dilemma—not having Bingo friends to play Bingo with. So, I thought I would email you and see if you had any suggestions on how I might team up with a Bingo buddy or two.
I’m not the kind of person that is going to walk up to a stranger in a Bingo hall and ask them if they’d like to be my Bingo buddy. But except for that, I can’t really think of another way to do it. And that seems pushy and I imagine I could get some pretty strange looks or be seen as some kind of Bingo hall stalker if I tried that.
What would you do in my case? Any advice is appreciated, and hopefully will help me and others.
—Solo Bingo, via email
As kids, it was so easy for us to fall into friendships. The classroom, the playground, the neighborhood—daily opportunities abounded for crossing paths with kid by the dozen.
Unfortunately, as adults, especially older adults, striking up new friendships can be a real challenge. No one likes being a recipient of the suspicious, narrow-eyed glare of someone you’re trying to chat with who clearly wants you to go away. So, we avoid the risk by keeping our distance—being polite but aloof—when we’d really like to reach out and make a deeper human connection.
In your case, you have a big leg up: You share an interest in Bingo with a room full of people who have the same interest.
The next time you visit a Bingo hall, why not look for someone who is also solo and sit at their table. Before Bingo starts, you can chat with them casually and see if they respond positively. If they are short with their responses, drop it. If they are pleasant, then you’ve succeeded with your first step.
From there you can try a little more chatting during breaks and perhaps exchange names. At the end of the games, joke about winning or losing, wish them a nice evening and be on your way.
You have now established a basic connection. From there all you have to do is look for the person again, sit at their table, chat a little more, maybe bring a tempting snack to share, and wait and see if the two of you are heading down Bingo Buddy Boulevard.
If you do not see the person, look for someone else and repeat step one. Eventually you will click with someone, or even several people, and develop a whole Bingo entourage! —Aunt Bingo
Share your views! Write to Aunt Bingo c/o the Bingo Bugle, P.O. Box 527, Vashon, WA 98070, or email her at STENGL456@aol.com. Be sure to include your name and address (you can request that your name not be published), as typically she will not include anonymous letters in her columns.
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