A dice board decided the fate of the Pandavas centuries ago. A game plan was evolved by the Kauravas and executed to perfection by Sakuni. To some, this might seem to be taken from the great Hindu epic ” Mahabharata”. But to many it is considered as just another form of betting or gambling. Emperors and Kings rolled dices in those days, and kingdoms fell and hell broke loose. Fast forward to this century. Now we hear the sweet sound of dices rolling elegantly at svelte casinos throughout the world. Millions are made and lost in just a few seconds.The players mostly return empty-handed but the casino owners make sure their pockets are full.
Why betting now ? It’s the Indian medias most hot topic in recent times. So I thought, why not get into the aura of betting and type a few words. So betting and gambling is not an addiction of the 21st century. It is quite old, may be as old as the cave man ( who knows?) We now have horses racing at prestigious derbies, wanting and waiting to win thousands of dollars as stake money. We even have dogs chasing big prize money, then we have the boxing ring bets, football bets, car racing bets, pool bets and of course cricketing bets.
The 1998 film “Croupier” starring Clive Owen is an excellent movie depicting the gamblers mindset.
I saw it twice on DVD and was quite impressed with the dialogues. I wanted to share a few of them to you. By the way Jack is the Croupier in the film.
Definition : A Croupier is a person appointed at a casino table to assist in the conduct of the game. Now the dialogues.
Jani De Villiers : Do you believe in astrology?
Jack: Absolutely not! But then, I’m a Gemini and Gemini’s don’t believe in astrology.
Jack : Gambling’s not about money. It is about not facing reality, ignoring the odds.
Marion : I must be a fool – I never think about the odds.
Jack : (voice-over) His existence was forming an interesting pattern of betrayals. Sometimes he was unsure whether he was the betrayer or the betrayed. It’s all numbers,the croupier thought. Spin of the wheel, turn of the card, time of your life. In the book of numbers the Lord said, ” Thou shall count thy steps”.
So why do people bet? Gambling gives an instant adrenaline rush. It’s a stress reliever, a boredom buster, ” I have it in me attitude ” to escape from problems, to be sociable, last but not the least to win money.
The Indian media is pursuing the Indian cricketing world with iron fists and doesn’t seem to tire even day after day. Probably it’s not going the way they wanted it to be . Meanwhile our politicians are heaving a sigh of relief and are in quite a relaxed mood. In every TV channel we have different faces in different square boxes, waiting for their turn to blast away. Once the media find a better story they will simply fade away. Because once there is peace, where is the need for so many TV cameras there?