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Places Merlina Never, Ever Wants To Be

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-02 16:38:55 EDT
Rating: 1.45 on 36 ratings (36 reviews) (Review this item) (V)

Now this thought came to me tonight. The Bloke was going to a staff leaving drinks thing in a pub in Stratford (London)and I was invited. I really hate going to bars... I’d much rather be an unsociable bitch in the garden with the gladioli and radishes – but I figure its all networking and it’s the rail trade (like me) so... I said sure...

I got ready to go – now I have to mention this even though it’s nothing to do with the story – I went on the Aitkins diet on the 1st February and have lost 28bs since I started. So in a knee high leather boots, a tweed mini skirt and this cute top I got from a boutique in Covent Garden yesterday and my perfectly recently cut bob – I headed off. Incidentally photos will follow – it’s impossible to get full body shots by yourself and is so indulgent to get someone to take one of you. But I will get some. Am so not the podge I was. And you won’t recognise me.


I got a taxi to the bar and on the way I passed a ‘William Hill’. Now our US guys won’t know this but they are places you go to, to bet on horses. I swear I have never seen what’s inside those places and am frankly curious. The same could be said for a ‘Carousel’ – which is a place that holds slot machines. Again I have never personally visited one but have an idea of what they look like inside as they always have the doors open..... Generally people who looked like they died about five years ago putting money in slots, in some belief that because ‘one day they won £40’ - that it might happen again. The irony of the fact that they probably put that same £40 BACK IN the machine is lost on them of course.

Basically my belief is that if the big shot companies LOST money on slot machines – they wouldn’t exist.

Another place I wouldn’t be seen in is a Bingo Hall.

Now I have no idea what it’s like in America but Bingo has been big in England for years and has generally been seen as a hobby for the elderly.... a kind of £1 a go, sociable night out for them.


But now because of the internet – we are flooded with internet bingo... with £10 free start....with a chatline.... to make friends.


This is not the same things as the old ladies - this is for poor fools who think they will win money.

And then...

And then I realised.

I appear to have a problem with gambling...? It must be that... why am I so disgusted by these places. It makes sense when they all do the same thing.

The only gambling thing I ever did was when I was about 9 years old – my father used to get us to pick a horses name for the Grand National and if we won we got money. I never won from what I can remember (but then again I always picked horses by names like ‘flower’ or ‘forest’...

Is gambling loved by most people? To be fair I don’t think I actually know anyone who is into gambling?

But I am curious.

Am I odd to be irritate by it?


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Submitted by RoadSong at 2009-04-25 23:55:30 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Horse races in wild places give me the urge to gamble. Not with money. With trade goods and other interesting items.
There are the wildest horse races up near the Canadian border.Ride down a cliff, swim a river, and THEN race your horse to the finish line. Crazy riders and strong horses. The same horses outran the U.S. Calvary....

Submitted by ghola at 2009-04-23 15:05:45 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by apollo88 at 2009-04-07 11:27:17 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

i gamble on the football.

in fact i'm exposed for about $4k right now if liverpool don't finish above man u.

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-07 10:27:56 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Bob! Good to see you around.

Submitted by BLITZKREIG_BOB at 2009-04-07 10:10:24 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I have a lot of bad habits, but I never gamble. I've never been in a casino. Bingo makes blood shoot out of my ears. Slot machines insult my intelligence.

Submitted by Caulaincourt at 2009-04-04 20:09:36 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

you know what for :)

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-04 04:24:08 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Submitted by Caulaincourt (user info) at 2009-04-03 23:39:40 EDT (#)
Ranking: 2

thank u =)
what for hon?

Submitted by Caulaincourt at 2009-04-03 23:39:40 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

thank u =)

Submitted by kaos-king at 2009-04-03 12:28:35 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by inion_de_trua at 2009-04-03 11:56:49 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

i play the lotto now and then when i'm feeling particularly poor. i went to vegas and did slots for about 20 minutes before i got bored. i DID get a gold chip dropped from one in the golden nugget though, that was kinda nice.

so where are the pics?

Submitted by Sage at 2009-04-03 11:13:13 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by BranDo at 2009-04-03 05:30:05 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Gambling is up there next to alcohol. Both are legal in most places and are seen as socially accepted.

I was in rehab in the early 90's and those with gambling and alcohol problems dropped out within the 3 week detox period before the actual treatment started.

Most of them lost all in the long run.

Submitted by EmissionImpossible at 2009-04-03 04:33:42 EDT (#)
Rating: 2


Submitted by Berty at 2009-04-03 04:21:11 EDT (#)
Rating: 1

Scientists have conducted experiments on rats where a rat can push a button and recieve food. When the button always results in food being dispensed when it is pushed, the rats eat only what they need to get by.

When the button dispenses food randomly, the rats will push that button like their lives depend on it and will balloon to absurd weight from eating food constantly.

Slot machines, and gambling in general, takes advantage of this same mechanism which exists in humans. Fundamentally this is a response to anxiety with the gambling 'win' being the easing of this anxiety. There is a relation between the low-key euphoria smokers feel when they placate their addiction and the enjoyment gamblers get out of gambling.

I would guess, and I'm probably wrong but what the hell, that when you look at gambling establishments, slot machines or gamblers that you observe the existence of this anxiety and experience a negative reaction to being made aware of such a cause of anxiety existing. This is not abnormal, but it probably means that if you ever quit smoking that you will become one of those annoying 'born-again militant non-smokers' for the very same reason that you feel distress at seeing gamblers.

Submitted by Ducky at 2009-04-03 02:36:32 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Once a week, on Wednesdays if I don't get called in to teach, I go to Cottonwood Center and play Euchre with a group of senior citizens. We play for quarters, and I lose everytime. Lovely people...and FUNNY. That is the extent of my gambling - 8 quarters.

I love euchre.

Submitted by YourNameHere at 2009-04-03 02:06:32 EDT (#)
Rating: -1

Submitted by TuTs at 2009-04-02 21:50:14 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Every year I spend a $50 on the melbourne cup, last year I won $250. I buy lotto for $7.20 once a week, every now and then I win $30 and go to the greyhounds every now and then, have some food, drink and a bet. I wouldn't do any of these things if I couldn't afford it though. It is just exciting to win. However, I can see how the little old nannas get sucked into the pokies, especially when you know that this is all some of them have in their lives.

Oh and my godmother won division one lotto and paid off her house, its just the luck of the draw ;)

Submitted by CrapWeed at 2009-04-02 21:30:51 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Yeah, I dislike gambling as well. And I don't have much respect for the attitude "oh, it's their money; they can do what they like." There's been numberous studies showing just how physically addictive gambling is. I don't think we should be allowing big business to exploit a natural human weakness for their own profit.

Atkins, eh? Is that the one with all the meat?

And congrats on the diet progress, as well.

Submitted by skrapmetal at 2009-04-02 18:21:53 EDT (#)
Rating: 1

I suck at gambling, so I don't do it. Much.

I play the lottery. Astronomically bad odds, but if you think about it, it is the best entertainment value there is. You spend one measly dollar and then for three or four days you get to fantasize about the real (though very remote) possibility that you could have to spend some more time figuring out what to do with $10M or more in cash.

Submitted by monkeyswithguns at 2009-04-02 18:01:35 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I've never cared for gambling, gluttony is more my thing, though I had a good friend whose father was literally addicted to the act of gambling. It didn't matter what the game or bet was, he wanted to throw his money away.

Ended up being ostracized by his family after the divorce. Went on to become a magician with some kind of television show in the Philly area, but still gambles to this day. To be fair(er) he was an awesome magician.

Submitted by captainrads at 2009-04-02 17:57:37 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Old people play bingo in the U.S. too...its just about all they do.

As for the slots, I just turned 18 today so I'd like to give them a try...although I plan on being smart and only bringing 20 bucks. My brother actually won like $300 when he went, but of course he got incredibly lucky. I don't think he's been gambling since.

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-02 17:26:45 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Not at all. There are all these myths and none have happened to me.I just eat healthy food and don't eat potatoes, bread, pasta, rice or sugar. It's so easy when you get used to it.

Submitted by orphelia at 2009-04-02 17:24:26 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

nah, I'd say a stone of that was baby/water and just not eating a few days after the birth.
I have to lose a little bit more to get my tummy tuck. I am so excited!!
well done you but that aitkens thing would be no good for me, you must get awfully constipated :/

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-02 17:19:51 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Well done Orph..

Submitted by orphelia at 2009-04-02 17:16:50 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I lost two stone since new year just walking more, using a trampoline and eating less.
I still want to remain tubby, it suits me, but I got worried by that stroke advert (?) on TV and don't want to die before my kids are old.

RE gambling - I do the Lotto and the odd scratch card and every saturday I do the accumalator on the footy scores - about three quid usually with a possible win of 1,000 - 30,000 quid.
When I go to the pub I like the odd go on those quiz machines but I absoultely loathe the casino and arcades - anything over a fiver I just think is frivilous.

Submitted by RoadSong at 2009-04-02 17:12:02 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I won $100.00 on a scratch off ticket.

{Looking forward to your sure to be stunning photographs!}

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-02 17:08:37 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Submitted by HadToBeDone (user info) at 2009-04-02 16:53:09 EDT (#)
Ranking: 0

The problem is the glorification of gambling as a way to MAKE money. Promotion the idea that you can hit it big in a casino is almost guaranteed to bring in a ton of money from those who really can't afford to blow it. Sad, really.

In london you see these women with their 4 kids in tow with the benefits money, buying scratchcards instead of food. Aggh. Its almost cruel.

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-02 17:06:38 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Submitted by Crystle (user info) at 2009-04-02 17:04:17 EDT (#)
Ranking: 2
and congrats on the wieght honey.. it's tough, but you can stick it through! I'm doing atkins after Easter myself.
thanks hon,it so works. Just a change of food - you get more energy too.

Submitted by Crystle at 2009-04-02 17:04:17 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I don't 'GET' the facination gambling seems to hold for some.

You're very right - if they didn't make money off the slots, they wouldn't be there..

In Reno and Vegas, generally it's the past-expiration-date crowd that sits at the slots for hours on end. No expressions, just staring at the machines as the lights blink and the tinny "bingy" noises fill the air. I always find it utterly depressing to walk through those areas.

that being said, if I'm stuck in the Vegas airport and have a quarter in my pocket, I've been known to throw it into a machine and give it a whirl. I don't consider it anything more than getting rid of a quarter, though.

and congrats on the wieght honey.. it's tough, but you can stick it through! I'm doing atkins after Easter myself.

Submitted by Sacrilicious at 2009-04-02 17:00:06 EDT (#)
Rating: 1

I live an hour from Atlantic City, and if I find myself in a casino, I'll occasionally spend <$20 on slots, but I'm not much of a gambler..when it's gone it's gone and it's really to pass the time in the event I end up there (usually to visit a friend from the area and we literally walk through the place as a shortcut, or meander over feeling lucky around 3am after all night at the Irish Pub). Once, I won enough back to pay for my portion of the (non-casino)hotel room, which was about $50. Last year, a friend of mine won over 20K in a night playing slots. WTF.

Submitted by Hadley at 2009-04-02 16:53:09 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

I don't have a problem with people who have money to burn (read: not Hadley) going and hitting a casino. If they choose to lose their money, so be it.

The problem is the glorification of gambling as a way to MAKE money. Promotion the idea that you can hit it big in a casino is almost guaranteed to bring in a ton of money from those who really can't afford to blow it. Sad, really.

Submitted by forensicgirl3 at 2009-04-02 16:49:24 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

I always considered gambling to be very dubious, but once I took a semester of advanced statistics, I considered it evil as well.

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-02 16:46:46 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

ignore that - now I can't read - let alone type.

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-02 16:46:09 EDT (#)
Rating: 0


Submitted by Brdn_Nkd at 2009-04-02 16:42:40 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

i don't mind gambling every now and then, a trip down to the boats in dubuque is fun, poker is always fun, shake dice sometimes. not one to sit and play slots for hours on end or anything like that.

Submitted by Merlina at 2009-04-02 16:41:27 EDT (#)
Rating: -2

ohmigod my typing is shot to shite. I blame the new laptop.


What's everyone so worked up about? So there's a comet. Big deal.
It'll burn up in out atmosphere, and whatever's left will be no bigger
than a chihuahua's head.

-- Homer Simpson
Bart's Comet