The Mush

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You know what I got?  I got ungatz. I’m a mush.

I bought a bunch of raffle tickets at the Greybeards Dinner Dance in January and all my purchases became pure donations. I rolled that lack of good fortune into three different Super Bowl boxes and didn’t come close.  And then…

Well, first let me explain mush. I’m pretty sure mush is familiar to anyone who’s taken a bus to Atlantic City with a roll of quarters or who’ve lost their rent gambling. But for those who’ve been wise and/or stingy enough to avoid the pitfalls of gambling, you might not be familiar with the patron saint of losers: Edward Mush.

  1. Mush was made famous in the movie, A Bronx Tale. His losing ways were legendary as he could turn any sure thing into a longshot. But his misfortune wasn’t contained to himself. Anyone in his vicinity, anyone making the same bet as him, was done. In the movie, tellers at the racetrack betting booth handed him his tickets already ripped up – saving him the trouble.
  2. Mush was the personification of bad luck and spread his misfortune inadvertently. Evil Eye Fagin, on the other hand, spread bad luck on purpose. He was a character from the Bowery Boys who’d cast a bad luck spell on you if you made eye contact with him and his bugged-out eyeballs.

My luck has been so bad lately, I’m starting to wonder if one of you gave me the evil eye and I was too obtuse to notice.  Yea, some of my readers can be pretty treacherous.  And those are my friends.

I capped off my season of mush with the NCAA Basketball Tournament. I was in an NCAA survivor pool. The premise is you have to pick the winner of ONE game a day. One. The trick is you can’t pick the same team again throughout the tournament.  But I pick with a kiss.  The Kiss of Death. The SMU basketball team is out looking for me because I picked them.

I also had a box for the Championship game. You win based on the numbers of the final score. The guys who ran the box treated me like the racetrack tellers treated Mush. They gave me letters instead of numbers.

My mushiness extended to merely rooting for a team. I didn’t have to have money invested in the outcome. I’d tune into a game just to watch. I’d have no particular preference for either team but I’d usually pull for the underdog. Invariably, the games I watched had the underdog surge out in front.  I’d get caught up in the hysteria and as soon as I committed my rooting interest, the mush gods would awaken. Without fail! 

When you’re bad luck you change the channel.  Because, you know, logic tells you that if you’re not watching, the team will do better. I will swear that this is true. There have been times when things were going bad, I have left the room and then a few minutes later, from three rooms away, I hear the TV. Good things are happening again. The underdog has a shot.  I can’t stay away. I go in to see what all the excitement’s about. And I mush them.

I’ve even tried rooting for the other team hoping some sort of reverse mush would work.  Doesn’t work.

The scary thing is when you’re on a mush roll you think everything can be affected by your bad luck.  I had my car washed the other day and then it rained.  Sorry, I mushed the day for the rest of you.

Anyway, I’m betting things get better.  Ah, sh*t, shouldn’t have said that.

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