Betting with food stamps could become a reality if the economy continues to crumble.
My circle of gambling friends is partly comprised of recreational bettors. Betting has provided them a release from daily troubles, like quarrels with the significant other or a poor day at work. It’s always been a safer way to alleviate the pain than turning to recreational drugs, even though the government seems to think they’re one in the same.
If you haven’t heard, unemployment rates in the United States are sky high. Every time new jobs are promised, more seem to be taken away. Maybe Obama should use my reverse jinx theory
and tell everyone there will be no new jobs and the opposite will happen. Just a thought since we’ve supposedly tried everything.
Unemployment has hit just about everyone directly or indirectly. Either you’re unemployed or someone in your circle of friends and family is. My group is no different.
Some of my recreational betting friends are now, perhaps dangerously, turning to betting to stem the lack of income. Before you roll your eyes and slam them for even thinking of this as an out for their problems, you have to understand that this isn’t their first resort.
The job applications have been piling up along side a mountain of debt. It’s especially troubling when you consider the fact that most of them are qualified and just happened to have been snuffed by nationwide downsizing.
Combine that with the embarrassment of having to pay for groceries at the checkout stand with food stamps and you start to realize the reality of the situation they’ve living in. As they say, desperate times call for desperate measures.
However, there are many red flags to their plans of establishing a steady income through handicapping. First and foremost, they have no idea what they’re doing. Gambling for recreation and gambling for livelihood are two very different mentalities.
A bet lost for a recreational bettor can be upsetting, but a bet lost for a professional could be the difference between steak and TV dinners. I play soccer for recreation, but there’s no way I could play for my livelihood. A hobby can’t become a career overnight.
Can I blame them for this shortsighted thinking? No.
Unemployment and a small winning streak has led them to believe that betting can be a career. With the job outlook looking bleak, this seems to be a logical decision. The key phrase in that sentence is “seems to be.” Everyone wants to be a Vegas Whale and live a story of a successful gambler who beat the books. The fact remains that it’s far more work than glitz and glamour. This is real life, not Two For The Money
Could it end well for them? Possibly. As illogical as their decision seems, I’ve always believed that anyone who’s ever done anything great took a risk to do it. Does that apply to covering spreads? Your guess is as good as mine.
People always say, “Don’t get so upset. It’s only a game,” when we yell at the late-game fumble or missed foul shot.
If they only knew that quality of life could be dependent on the bounce of a ball. Til next time, cover the spread.
--Follow Sarah J. Phillips on Twitter @Covers_SJP