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Location: Midwest, United States

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Gambling Man

I never played craps. I never got into cards. Sure, like all teen-agers,
I was taught blackjack and poker by my “elders” (i.e., high-schoolers as opposed to us grade-schoolers). I promptly forgot how to play these games of chance. I simply didn’t enjoy gambling. Never have.

I’ve never been to a horse race (or dog race, for that matter). I never joined the office betting pools during March Madness, the World Cup, or the baseball, basketball, hockey and football play-offs. I don’t play the lottery. I never thought Ed McMahon would knock on my door.

I drove to Vegas to see what the hoopla was all about. That was first in the early 70’s, I'd guess. I arrived shirt-less, barefoot and quite the longhair. I was not welcomed (then again, very few establishments were inclined to welcome people such as I). I quickly decided to simply keep on going...(there is a great, big ocean just a day's drive west, after all...). But I remember this scene vividly (it is 3 AM):

A man in a stylish tuxedo is sitting on the curb, head in hands, crying. More than crying…wailing. At that very moment, a Vegas cab cruises by, roof-top billboard flashing horse race results, and megaphone blaring: Ain’t we having fun!?!”

I chewed on that for a bit. “No.” This wasn’t fun. This is something
I can never understand. Gambling away your fortune, perhaps your life, just doesn’t seem like it’s all that much fun.

* * *

OK. I’m not a gambler. So riddle me this: Why did I gamble everything…my possessions, my fortune, my heart and very soul, on the love of a woman? (More than once, I might add).

I’m not a gambler, I say. But, I went all in, I bet it all and lost…repeatedly…for love.

Who’s the addict with the problem?

* * *

Gratuitous non-sequitor: Origami intrigues and delights me.

* * *


Blogger ever_trying said...

I know very few people who don't gamble on love. So tell me this -- why is it so much easier to part with your heart than with a few dollars?

Sun Dec 17, 01:59:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

"why is it so much easier to part with your heart than with a few dollars"

It isn't. I'd gladly give up fortune for love. Love is the only thing in life worth the gamble, I guess.

Sun Dec 17, 02:18:00 PM  
Blogger PattiKen said...

The question, and the answer, have not to do with ease, but rather with value. A win at love is worth ever so much more than a jackpot at the tables or track, the slots or the lottery. Not only that, the game (though I'm hesitant to call it that) is more engaging and oh, many other things as well.

Sat Mar 26, 11:10:00 AM  
Blogger Jonas said...

I like your answer to ET's question far more than mine, Patti.

Sun Mar 27, 02:24:00 AM  
Blogger PattiKen said...

Well, I may not really be qualified to give a meaningful answer, since I do on occasion gamble (being an inveterate dreamer; you know, "what if..."). I've played the lottery, bet on races, won big in Vegas ($29.00 on the penny slots), lost big in CT ($200 in 10 minutes at a blackjack table in an Indian casino). I have never bet on a sports game, however; I have my standards. ;-)

Sun Mar 27, 10:39:00 AM  

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