Mikey (neomikey) wrote,

Vegas: thoughts on gambling (a.k.a. "Why Gambling is Stupid!")

Okay, ladies and gents, it's time to rant on gambling.

I said this a lot during the trip to Uncle Phil, and this is basically a proven fact: Las Vegas was built on the money of suckers. People went there, putting their money in, expecting a "get rich quick" plan. Who wouldn't want to get rich quick? You put your money in, you play your cards right, you get the pull on that slot machine that nets you all that money...it sounds easy, doesn't it? But in all honesty, with the introduction of technology...things aren't the way they used to be. Slot machines don't run on randomization--they run on electronics. That means that they don't have to give you the jackpot. The wheels with the symbols will land on whatever the program tells them to land on.

I'll give a quick synopsis of how these programs allegedly run, though highly refuted by the casinos. They basically run in order to get your money in. Taking a line from one of my favorite Pizza Cats episodes, "We got ourselves a su~cker, we got ourselves a su~cker, we got ourselves a sucker!! XD XD XD" (yes, the "XD" portion was implied, I'm sure...). It will have you continue to lose, while prodding you to put more in. You could either put one, two, or three credits in, each with their own appeal. My parents were addicted to the "Wheel of Fortune" slot machines. With them, if you put one credit in, you could win such and such an amount with each combination. If you put two credits in, you could win usually double the amount you could have gotten with one credit. But if you put three in, you got the same as you could get with two credits, but you had the chance to win the always-increasing jackpot, which normally was six digits long, or you could "spin the wheel", where if you got a "spin" symbol, you'd press a button, and a big wheel above the machine would spin around, and whatever it landed on, that's how many credits you got. But the wheel was electronically controlled, and it was rare to ever, ever win something above 50 credits (50 quarters). And you also never could get that jackpot. The symbols for the jackpot I only saw actually achieved twice while witnessing my parents many, many times playing this game. Twice. The symbol only appeared on their rotating slot machine dial thing...twice.

Those seriously aren't great odds at getting the jackpot. And you know it's electronically controlled, because every single machine there is. You can just tell. The lights, the sounds, everything it makes...now is controlled by electronics. And electronics can be programmed to do exactly what you want them to do, including get money out of suckers, who have dreams of winning that increasing $500,000+ cash jackpot. And, according to one fellow who was on tv, who allegedly was a past worker on these slot machines..."you have a better chance of getting struck by lightning than winning anything from these machines". I'm just going to have to agree with him on that.

Also, while this is only speculation on my part, I think it also bears some truth...I think. Uncle Phil, while spending time with Mom and her gambling probl--hobby. He mentioned to me it was funny how he watched Mom lose a bunch of money, get to 30 credits...but then win a couple hundred back, then just kept playing. He said it had her lose a lot, then made sure she got it back, like it was just getting her hooked on playing, making her believe there that she could make a fortune with playing...or at least enough to fill a cup. Just about every time she played, though...she lost it all.

If I want to play something, I want to play something where it depends on skill, and not chance or luck of the draw (literally). And anyways, if I want to make money, I'm going to do it honestly. Money isn't something to take for granted in today's society, and it isn't something to be tossed about lightly. While the promise of making an easy few bucks is honestly appealing, I know more than likely it's going to end up wasted, and I could get the same effect by taking the contents of my wallet and throwing it down a storm drain, garbage disposal, trash can--whatever other disposing implement you might be able to think of.

I don't play around with my money. In all honesty, I did play a couple slot machines, but it wasn't ever for more than a dollar. I might get bored sitting around while Mom played with all her credits on some machine, so I'd figure "why not", then maybe grab a couple quarters from my pocket (change from being at the arcade! :D! ), and plop them into the machine. A pull of the handle, the wheels spun 'round...and then came back up empty. My first words after losing to my first machine were, "Geez...gambling sucks!"

The most I made from my own money was I put in a quarter and got five back. That was the largest yield I got, and I took it and put it in my pocket, instead of letting them stay in the machine and playing them, hoping I would get even more money. Gambling is dumb, and you won't see me going to Vegas to gamble. I'll go there for the shows. I'll go there with my parents. I might even go there to see my internet friend Kairi (hi! :D). But you won't ever...ever see me up there because of money. I don't gamble.

Do you honestly hear somebody returning from Vegas, claiming they made a fortune, and are now set up for life?
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