Sunday, November 8, 2009

Playing to win.

I don't really understand betting.

Ok, on a human level I can understand the desire to win - and I know that the lottery ticket I occasionally purchase technically constitutes betting, but the whole horses, dogs, cards, roulette wheel, dice thing - I just don't get it.

Only once have I attended horse races, and I thought it was an incredibly dull day. But last week, as with the first Tuesday in November every year, people seemed to get extremely excited over the Melbourne Cup. In fact I can't imagine anywhere else in the world having a public holiday in honour of a horse race. And although I changed channels at 3 o'clock to watch the race, I didn't really care who won.

It's the same with cards. I've played poker once or twice, even recently saw some on TV, and I don't understand the fascination with the game. At the moment it seems to be enjoying some kind of 'rock star' status, but to me it seems like all luck of the draw with the only skill being the ability to pretend your hand is better than it actually is.

The one card game I love playing (virtually every lunchtime) is 500s. From what I've seen, this is a game with similarities to Bridge and Euchre. It involves tactics and strategies, working with a partner, and just a little bluffing from time to time. It's also one of the few games I know where you can choose to play to lose if your hand is good enough (or bad enough) to do so.

I used to play 500s quite a bit, and then didn't really have to opportunity to play for almost 20 years.  But now I'm playing it again over lunch with the guys at work.  It make for a break from the classroom with lots of good humoured joking and banter. (usually at my expense) And on Friday night a few of my mates played 500s for around 5 or 6 hours with a few drinks and snacks.  It made for a great Friday evening.

I suppose different horses for different courses (pun definitely intended) and each to their own and that kind of thing, but for me poker, horse racing and games of chance hold little attraction. As for life, love and career?  Well, I don't believe in much gambling there either.  I'll grab opportunities, and even take a few calculated risks, but no out and out gambles. I've seen that go wrong for too many people.

It doesn't mean I haven't made mistakes, though. But those were definitely my own fault.

1 comment:

Emma McLaughlin said...

I won $46 bucks because I was having a disagreement with my boss - hence the choice of "Crime Scene". Nice....