This is my old school writing, but some things never change and I knew this topic too well, too closely, so it’s worth revisiting.
Young un playing college dorm poker on-line; professional educator or medical technician who goes to AC once in a while but so so loves trying to win at those tables; the regular at that broken down harness track sliding card after card into the ATM because you can’t leave yet — you have to get your money back — it’s impossible to keep on losing on that machine, your luck has to change, it’ impossible to lose so many times in a row. The old folks saying over and over “it’s a night out, it’s just fun.”
I know, I watched you all many many years; many many times — I also got your ghost for a while. This is exactly what it feels like, what happens to you, who you become when you, some of you, play. I don’t boast too much and this isn’t even a boast really — I just know the head and the heart in the casino and at the betting parlour too well because I lived there for a long time; too comfortable and too curious.
So this, long and literary and the first paragraph filled with a little too much writerly showing off — this account about why and how we gamble when we gamble hard doesn’t get more definitive. Read it — if you’re a serious player or once were you’ll nod your head (guarantee: if this doesn’t happen, write me and I’ll write you a brand new essay on whatever you want, no charge).
So here you go,read about us as we really are or can be when you log on or slide that $20 into the machine and the thing lights up ready to play: