Sublime Creativity of Online Bingo Chat Roomies

By Ben Hamill - March 20 2016

Many bingo aficionados prefer playing at home on their computers. There are several very acceptable reasons. One, it saves them the inconvenience of driving to a bingo centre. If you live many kilometres from a centre, it may make sense to play online. But, if a center where you feel comfortable is nearby, I consider it a pretty lame excuse to say that driving is too big a hassle. Everything changes, of course, during the long Canadian winter generally and when it's raining in the other "seasons".

As bingo centers add gaming machines and generally jazz up their venues, some erstwhile bingo centre players have discovered the convenience and anonymity of online bingo. This is the theme of this blog entry.

All For One and One For All

When I began playing bingo at a center near my home, I reveled in the camaraderie there. I was one of the "young ones" as the veteran players called us but everyone got along well. We usually sat with the same people; we got to know something of their lives although we never spoke about the absolutely most personal things with our bingo pals at a centre!

We also developed a kind of slang. The callers might slangify the numbers. There was one elderly woman who had been bingoing for decades and knew slang terms for every number! I was never all that committed to learning the slang so I was often amused anew when I heard a slang term that I had heard before but had forgotten.

Online Anonymity: Plusses and Minuses

If there's anything that is missing from online bingo it's the in person contact with people you see only at the bingo centre. We all have social friends and people we consider friends but not social friends. These might be people we see only at church or synagogue. When we were kids, we had friends from school who we never got together with outside of school or possibly birthday parties. But, years later, if we bump into them, we're happy to see them and reminisce about old times! Work friends is a very common category—people you'll eat lunch with but never invite to your home for a social visit.

Chat Rooms Provide "Family"

So, online bingo lacks that face to face connection. Knowing this, online bingo sites offer chat rooms. In addition to being able to chat with your faceless online bingo pals as long as you like, the Chat Masters who run these chat rooms also play chat room games and give away prizes. A recent survey found that fully 70% of online bingo players also use the chat rooms regularly.

– Now is the Time to Become Part of the bingo Family –

A Short Compendium of Chat Room Slang

Online bingo chat rooms have developed a slang all their own. Such as:

  • Anyone playing and chatting at an online bingo site is a "roomie".
  • 1TG means "one to go" before invading cyberspace with our virtual "bingo" yelp. When you're playing a fill-in game, you'll also see 2TG or 3TG.
  • If you stop playing you might send "poof" over the online bingo Force. If you leave for a short time you might send BIAM, BBL, or BBS for "back in a minute", "be back later", or "be back soon".
  • ^5 means high five
  • BRB means be right back" but protocol dictates you use it only when you also mean "bathroom break"!
  • 4AO means "for adults only". This is a precautionary warning, based on the genuine anonymity of cyberspace, that was is to follow or what is being discussed may not be appropriate for really young people even if it passes the code set out by the Chat Master.
  • Replacing the ubiquitous LOL is VBG meaning "very big grin".
  • ROFL means "rolling on the floor laughing". There are a few variations on this theme that my editor would rather I not include in this article. But she can't edit out my EG, "evil grin".
  • If a chat friend has sent a 1TG and loses out, you should send BLNG for "better luck next game".
  • CM means Chat Master.
  • BMHATW means "banging my head against the wall". It can be used in any appropriate situation like when you lose a couple of close games in a row or when you're complaining about the dog from next door whining and crying all the time or when a charity you respect declines to pull out of the lawsuit against Windsor and Tecumseh. Many mothers use BMHATW when they are bemoaning their daughter's latest "boyfriend".
  • When a friend sends a BMHATW it's nice to send a DWBH in response meaning "don't worry be happy".
  • GBH means "great big hug". It's used when a roomie relates very good news or very bad news.
  • When someone wishes everyone well and leaves the chat room, it's nice to respond CYA for "see ya".
  • If you've had an illness and have been away from the chat room for a few days or longer, you might announce your return with G2BB for "great to be back".
  • Online bingo is really a fantasy world in which we are all superheroes so when something is said or happens to bring us back to Earth we might send out an IRL for "in real life". This is also a gentle way of telling a roomie that she's being unrealistic about her daughter's new boyfriend.
  • KOTC and KOTL are best reserved for people who know each other very well. They mean "kiss on the cheek", usually a safe remark woman to woman and "kiss on the lips", too be used only when you are 100% sure that the recipient will respond U2.

I used caps to indicate the chat phrases just because it looks better in this type of writing. When you chat, you should use small letters.

– GLE (Good Luck Everyone) –