Sunday, January 16, 2011


Until a year ago, I had never heard the word "Bunco".  Never in my life.  I could have been standing in the middle of a Bunco Convention and I would have assumed it was a giant Yahtzee Rally.

But last Spring I got the email.  The email from my girlfriend Denise about a Bunco group.  The email was brief. 

Let me summarize:

"Yada yada yada.  My friend is forming a Bunco group.  It's a group of 12 ladies.  We play a dice game, eat and drink.  We gather one a month.  Yada Yada Yada...."

I took a leap of faith. 

I envisioned a movie about 12 ladies playing Bunco and all the laughs.

The cries.

The good times.

Mind you I still had no idea what Bunco was when I directed this movie in my head.

But this movie was just like Steel Magnolias.

Except no one dies, and instead of meeting at Truvy's for a cut n' color we play Bunco and talk trash.
I have a flair for the dramatic.  So does my seven year old daughter.  Stay with me here...

The trick with Bunco is you need 12 ladies.  Preferably 12 fun ladies.  No one wants a dud at Bunco.

You also need a few ladies "on call" to sub in for a regular player.  You need twelve at each game night or people get confused.  And then they shouldn't be traveling. 

If Bunco night rolls around and you're playing with a "phantom", you'll have eleven ladies so confused they can't travel.

Hence, 12 fun ladies. 

Each month a different player hosts the game.  When you host, you supply the food and drinks.  You also need to make certain you have any necessary subs lined up to play.

The emails are flying the week of a Bunco night. 

If you are married or cohabitating, one last necessity is a hideout for your Hubby.

No man wants to be within 50 yards of 12 women playing Bunco.  Remember the sleepovers you had when you were in middle school?  All the loud, excitable friends that drove your parents crazy?
Age these girls twenty years and give them alcohol.   
Every player brings $20 in small bills to the game.  One person needs to be in charge of the group.  Consider this brave lady the "Gatekeeper".  She needs to keep the numbers.  Hand out the winnings.  And know the rules. 
Our group is like a patchwork quilt.  A few ladies from here, a few from there.  But we all lead back to the same lady.

I would say it's like the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon but I really don't know what that is. 

Anywho, the first few Buncos was a getting to know the group (and the game) process.  To be honest I just recently learned the names of every player.  But we share a strange Bunco kinship that can only be understood by fellow Bunco players.
Before I go on, I must admit there were many nights I was saying, "Ugh, I have Bunco tonight.  I just want to sit and watch a movie and eat a gallon of ice cream like every other night of my life!"

But I went.  If I was available, I went.  I broke out of my shell.  The shell that all Moms find themselves in if they aren't careful.  The sweatpants, ponytail and no makeup shell.

Friday night was my night to host Bunco.  I fretted about what to serve, what beer to buy and where to hide the clutter. 

If you only host once a year, you want the night to be fabulous. 
And the night was fabulous.  It always is.  Even if the house is cluttered and the beer is cheap. 

A night out is a night out.
And we're all very much the same when you peel away the layers. We all hide clutter and speed clean with Windex. 

And so even though I only made half of the Buncos this year, I'm in for another year.  Because the option to go out once a month, and be with ladies who also wipe boogies and hide clutter is good to have.

Plus I feel cheated because I never ended a night with the Fuzzy Die.

I beg you to go ahead and find 12 ladies to play Bunco.  No Duds allowed.

You'll be glad for the laughs, the camaraderie, and the option to get out once a month.  A commitment you can complain about but then be thankful you made.  Because you always go home refreshed and ready to wipe more boogies.
Happy Sunday everyone!

Mommyhood Footnote:  After eleven months I still have no clue how to explain the game Bunco.  You just have to dive in and play.  Or, you can read up here:
Bunco Rules


  1. I have not idea how you play bunco either, but from this post, I sure want to play! xx

  2. I love Bunco nite! Unfortunately, I work most evenings, so I had to back out..sniff sniff!

  3. Awww, crap. You got me. I'm emailing Kerri right now...damn Bunco!!!

  4. LOVE me some BUNCO!!! And I can so relate to the Mommy shell of comfy pants and ponytails!! My goal is to wear mascara at least 5 days a week!! HA

  5. I've been playing bunco with the same group for 35 years. Eight of us are originals. We have such a great time and are the best of friends after all these years. We didn't all know each other in the beginning, but depend on each other for everything now. We have gone through baby showers and births and now grandchildren. Life's been good to us. Birmingham, AL Rolling girls!!!!


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