Discussion in 'Community' started by keysersoze, Sep 3, 2004.

  1. keysersoze macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    Well, I searched the forums for this topic and was shocked to find absolutley nothing, save for something about IBM gambling on a future product etc. So I have decided to bring it up, as I am sure people out there have thoughts/feelings on the subject. Personally, I have very little experience with gambling, although small wagers are in a sense "betting" and I would be lying if I said I never placed $5 bets on football games etc. The reason I have been thinking about this recently, is that my brother has decided he wants play Texas Hold-em, like in the World Series of Poker that's on ESPN, for money. I, as well as the rest of the fam, have strongly pushed for him to NOT do this. But it's difficult to tell someone not to do something-- it's not like he's got a problem, but I'd like to be able to help him avert it if it should become one.

    I would like to hear thoughts on gambling, on-line or not, and also thoughts/experiences with addictive personalities. Anyone have any experiences to share?

  2. jsw Moderator emeritus


    Mar 16, 2004
    Andover, MA
    Well, first of all, most people who gamble do so truly recreationally, losing a little money over time, but not so much that it doesn't count as entertainment.

    That said, a few addictive-personality types ruin their lives - and those of others - once entrapped by the downward spiral of trying to win back major losses. When gambling against the house, long term, you always lose. Of course, you can walk in, win big, and never gamble again. But most - as in "the vast and overwhelming majority of" - people ultimately lose money.

    As far as your brother is concerned: I guess the good news is that, in poker, most of the money is given back to the players, so it's not as guaranteed a loss as in other forms of gambling. It relies on luck, yes, but mostly - and, over the long run, almost entirely - on skill at (1) knowing the odds, and (2) knowing how to bluff. If he can do those things well, he might come out ahead. But chances are, he'll be playing against people better than him. I'd tell him to decide how much he's willing to lose, make a hard limit, and leave it behind after those losses are met (of course, he might just be good at it and win more often than not!). If he doesn't have an addictive personality, he should be able to walk away.
  3. gwuMACaddict macrumors 68040


    Apr 21, 2003
    washington dc
    gambling has become a big thing at the local dc colleges, mainly george washington and georgetown from my own experiences. i have been to games where pots reach excess of $1,000- and i've heard of parties where the stakes have been higher. i think its pretty ridiculous myself.
  4. iJon macrumors 604


    Feb 7, 2002
    I like gambling but i am not addicted. I am not good enough to wager so much money. On my Alaskan cruise this past summer we would take about 10-20 dollars to the video poker machines and play till we lost. If we were good we would take the winnings and save them for the next day. I wasted about 40 dollars that week, but that lasted me the whole week, and it was fun.

  5. jeremy.king macrumors 603


    Jul 23, 2002
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    Living in a state that uses proceeds from gambling for improving the quality of life (roads/education/bigger salaries :D ), I say let them gamble!

    I bet you he doesn't make a living from playing hold 'em. Tell him to take up golf, where even the last place guy (after the cut) makes money and sponsors love to pay you to use their products.
  6. jxyama macrumors 68040


    Apr 3, 2003
    easier said than done... :D

    i don't really believe in gambling so... i don't condone it or anything, but i don't participate beyond friendly wagers.

    i gambled once in atlantic city. i happened to have three quarters in my pocket. the second one won me $40 on a slot. i didn't even feel all that *lucky* or anything, it was just strange to think that 75 cents suddenly turned into $40...
  7. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Here in California, it's amazing how much income gambling resorts bring in. Gambling used to be illegal, then some specific types became legal, and then Indian reservations became home to gambling resorts because they were exempt from the laws that applied elsewhere in the state. Now the state has a lottery that generates big bucks and the education budget has been made beneficiary of lottery income. So feed those slot machines, and help me put more Macintoshes in schools!

    And I'll bet you that gambling will increase, not decrease, in California's future.
  8. Calvinatir macrumors 6502


    Nov 8, 2003
    In the last year and a half of playing poker recreationally I have made over $2000. I play low stakes poker with college acquaintances and low stakes at the casino. I play low stakes because i enjoy the feel of the cards and the excitement of the game. I've become a fairly decent player, walking out of the casino in the Green about 90% of the time..which is great. TIP:: Don't gamble more than you can afford to lose...heh..common sense
  9. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I don't gamble, I'm not one to take chances. The seem reason that I stay out of the stock market. It's an individual decision, so I don't complain about someone that does. I find it very sad that some spend more on gambling than they can afford. Recreational gambling is like any other recreation, the problem is addiction.
  10. jxyama macrumors 68040


    Apr 3, 2003
    like you said, it's an individual decision, but i hope you realize that properly managed portfolio of stocks is almost never a gamble. it will yield far greater return than anything else, at least given long enough horizon.
  11. yellow Moderator emeritus


    Oct 21, 2003
    Portland, OR
    Tell him to get together with a group of friends and play nickel, dime, quarter texas hold'um to get a feel for it. If he blows through $25 in change, that should allow you to give him a gentle nudge that maybe he needs some more practice before going pro/am.
  12. virividox macrumors 601


    Aug 19, 2003
    Manila - Nottingham - Philadelphia - Santa Barbar
    gambling is fun :) but just know ur limit and when ur losing know that sometimes quitting even when ur in th red is the right thing to do, rather than try to fight ur way to the green.

    personally set yourself a limit that your willing to lose, once u reach that, stop.
  13. keysersoze thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    Thanks for all the input-- much appreciate it.

    I just don't want him to get @#$#ed that's all, being my younger brother and all. I also don't want to be paranoid.

    Everything in moderation, I suppose. :)
  14. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Some people blow $125 in one night on Gold seats to an NHL hockey game, and some people blow that in one night at the casino. They all have entertainment value.

    I had an argument with a friend about this very recently. He says that casino's should get most of the blame for people go into gambling debt as casino's actually prey on the hopes and dreams of financially desperate people who go to casinos and pray that they make money. He said that casino's should just be taken away, as with all gambling. Casino doesn't really care about the people who lose $50 a night, and instead likes to prey on the people who are just hoping for some luck. Sorry, but you had to be there to really understand his point.

    I said that most people do it for fun, and the problems of a few shouldn't mean that the choice to gamble should be taken away from everyone. I also said that anything can be addictive, and that maybe shopping malls should be banned, since some people have a bad spending habit that puts them into major debt. My friend had to go for help because she had put $10000 debt on her father's credit card. She's much much better now. :)

    Needless to say, I don't think either of us won that argument. I'm more liberal than he is. It's just how you think about it, similar to the abortion issue, or other similar issues where nobody is clearly right.
  15. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    There is absolutely nothing wrong with going to a casino and playing some games for fun.

    The problem arises when it is an addiction. Just like alcohol.

    My personal favorite is Blackjack. I play on the cheap tables ($5-$300 per bet). My goal is to play for the evening on $100. When it's gone, I'm done. Usually I can stretch it out 2-3 hours, and sometimes I even come out ahead. Either way, I get the drinks and sometimes snacks for fee while playing. And it is just darn fun.

    Also, I love to watch Craps. And if I ever figure out the game, I may just play it someday. Wheels are cool too. Just watch, but fun to see folks play.

    Bottom line, if you feel the need to gamble, and can't live without gambling, then you probably have some sort of addiction. This addiction can lead to financial ruin, loss of family and even death (suicide). If you are addicted, you need to get looked at by a professional.

    If on the other hand, you occasionally gamble for entertainment and fun, then I would not worry about it and just keep having fun. Folks that travel to Las Vegas once a year to have some fun gambling come to mind here.

  16. jefhatfield Retired


    Jul 9, 2000
    i have seen the same thing with people who are into investing...depending on the investment, it could be a little safer than gambling (which in a casino is around under 1% up to 4% advantage for house/dealer), or much riskier than gambling...unfortunately, many people get addicted to investing and ruin their whole lives

    safer investments where the investor usually wins are not get rich quick schemes and favor the long term investor such are real estate, but in the long term

    i have known people who have used the real estate market to ruin themselves so there is nothing 100% percent "safe"

    the best advice i have heard, over and over again, is that investing IS gambling...remember that, then you will be much better off

    but to be on topic...i went to las vegas once and used up 18 dollars in small coins and lost it all over several hours in a weekend, but sometimes winning five or ten coins in a slot then losing them...i was down to my last two dollars, a roll of nickels, and in 40 pulls over ten minutes, i hit three jackpots and i ended up with somewhere under 10 dollars in nickels...but right then and there i had to catch my plane

    i wondered if i had more time, if i would break even, and then actually "make" some money...i was just 21 or so and it was exciting...that whole weekend i hit no jackpots on the slots and in the last ten minutes in las vegas i hit three...i wondered what the odds of that could be ;)

    i knew a drug store manager who used to spend a dollar every day for coffee and after years of that, he gave up the habit and felt a lot better...he instead put the money into one lottery ticket a day in the last 10-12 years he was coffee free...while drinking coffee, he only got irritated and often got the runs, but with the lottery, though he spent a dollar with nothing to show for it 75 percent of the time, he did win 100 dollars a few times, 250 and 500 a couple of times, and 1000 dollars once

    so his one dollar a day justification on coffee vs gamling was a good gave him nothing, but at least the few times he won a lump sum with the lottery tickets, and he got to buy goods and services, a used motorcycle, and a small vacation...last time i checked, drinking a dollar a day of coffee won't get you any of those things and may even hurt your health in the long run
  17. revenuee macrumors 68020


    Sep 13, 2003
    A place where i am supreme emporer
    I do the occasional poker night with my buddies, usually walk away 10$ or so up ... i like black jack at the casino ... i can walk away 50 - 125$ up for the night

    some nights i lose 20 - 40$ ... depends on the table
  18. Macmaniac macrumors 68040


    Me and 5 other guys get together every tuesday night and play Texas Hold'em. Every one starts out with $5 in change and we play until 1 or 2 people go broke, its a lot of fun.
  19. jefhatfield Retired


    Jul 9, 2000

    most people i know love to do cards and wager money or other stuff...i love cards and perhaps have played more hands than most people, but i never got off on using money but liked the odds and watching how games would unfold...that's probably why i enjoyed risk or battleship more than monopoly ;)

    but playing with change, in the 5 to 10 dollar limit, can last for hours and nobody ends up going into debt and that's the cool part of using small amounts of money...i would be stressed if i lost 100 dollars a weekend doing cards and would worry what my wife thought
  20. leftbanke7 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 4, 2004
    West Valley City, Utah
    Maybe it is just me but I don't go to Vegas to gamble. I will sit at a table or a machine for a bit but there is just too much to do down there to sit at a one armed bandit all night. When I have a gambling bug, I just drive to a little gambling town 100 miles out of Salt Lake across the Nevada line and play Pai Gow for a little while. Get a decent night's sleep and eat at the buffet. That usually curbs my appetites for a while.

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