In addition to Pete's actual presence gambling, this was an unusual gambling outing for a couple of other reasons. One, we made it a family affair, bringing the three kids with us. I can hear you saying to yourselves, "Are they nuts?" Or perhaps, as a fellow gambler, you're thinking, "Hey, where can I take the kids and still work in some gambling?"
To the first set of folks I say, "No, we're not nuts." To the second set of folks I say, "I've got just the place for you." And that's the second reason it was unusual. We gambled $52 each to save the life of a little boy who is not even six months old. We went to a bone marrow drive that his parents and sisters and aunts and uncles and grandparents and friends hosted. They hosted a desperate attempt to save Trevor from leukemia. Here he is, adorable little boy:
There were balloons. There were forms. There were crayons. There were coloring books. There were very long lines. There was homemade red wine. There were cotton swabs. There were lots and lots of people. And it just takes one of us to be a winner for Trevor. And it just takes one of us to be a winner for any other soul waiting for three 7's to line up in the National Marrow Donor Program database. His parents were there, talking to each person standing in line, thanking them for coming. His grandfather was there, pushing that homemade red wine. His sisters were there, staving off the tedium with the other kids. These are his sisters, of course:
Our kids were playing on the stage in the auditorium of the school where the drive was held. They were a noisy bunch. No noisier than the other kids. The kids who aren't sick. Who can dance on stage to new moves choreographed by an older sister. Who can color a Finding Nemo or Winnie the Pooh coloring page. Who can play Go Fish with their older siblings. Who can run around chasing a balloon and yelling "Ba! Ba!"
Pete and I don't know Trevor. We don't know his sisters. We don't know his parents. We don't know his grandparents. To the best of our knowledge, we don't know any relative of his. I hope against all hopes that my father is from the same line as Trevor's mom and that my mother is from the same line as Trevor's dad so that my parents created in me the marrow that Trevor's parents created in him. So that Trevor can live.
And if me, #109 yesterday, can't be the winner. Let it be #108. Or #31. Or #42. For Trevor's sake, let it be.
[If you'd like to learn more about Trevor, you can go to Caring Bridge. You'll want to visit the Caring Bridge site trevorkott. His mother, Angela, keeps a journal there and has a lot of photos of him and the family. I know of his family because of a mutual friend. I learned of Trevor and the drive when my friend sent me an email yesterday morning. If you'd like to become a donor -- and finally be a winning gambler or at least a hero regardless of your spin of the wheels -- you can check out the National Marrow Donor Program's website.]