Most people think that betting is a harmless pastime and certainly no different to playing games or placing wagers on sporting events. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. While the stigma surrounding the gaming industry has begun to decline, the damage caused by gambling is still highly evident. One of the best ways to highlight this issue is by exploring the cases of high-profile fugitives and notorious convicted criminals who have gone on to found new lives outside of prison. In many instances, this can be traced back to their involvement in illegal gambling activities during their sentences.
Early Start: The Arnold Palmer
To start things off, let’s examine the case of Arnold Palmer, one of the all-time greats in golf and an avid gambler. He was born in New York City in 1893 and raised in Florida, where he learned to play golf from some of the best in the game. During World War I, Palmer served as a Major in the United States Army and eventually worked his way up to the rank of Colonel. Following the war, he returned to civilian life and began working for a conglomerate of companies which owned and operated golf courses around the country. He eventually became the country club golf professional at the Miami Country Club before eventually being hired by the Grand Hotel in Detroit, where he worked for 31 years. It was during this time that he began expanding his golfing interests to Canada and Europe, where he enjoyed great success. In 1958, Palmer bought a 19th century mansion in Orlando for $125,000 and subsequently hired renowned architect Arthur Ravenswood to renovate and modernize it. It was here that he entertained guests and held tournaments. He is said to have occasionally played 24-hour poker games with friends and colleagues, which would typically end in an orgy of drinking and debauchery.
Gambler vs. Golfer
There are many parallels which can be drawn between Arnold Palmer and Oliver Hardy, another great American icon who was also an avid gambler and golf enthusiast. While he made several memorable jokes about golf in his films, this probably wouldn’t be surprising, as Hardy was a notoriously bad golfer and spent many a day in the woodshed practicing his short game. It’s been said that Hardy’s favorite pastime was not golf but rather “pokerishness,” and like Palmer he also became an accomplished casino gambler. He is credited with creating the modern game of baccarat, as well as popularizing the game in America. It was also during this time that he perfected his unique brand of humor, which was based on his observations of the American people. Much like Palmer, Hardy was also a New York City native and had served in World War I. He was also friends with many celebrities of the day, including Bob Hope and Louis Armstrong.
Playing The Market
Even though the stigma surrounding gambling has begun to decline, it still persists in many parts of the world. This may be attributed to the fact that a lot of people still think that the only way to really win is by cheating. In other words, they believe that the casino is always the best way to go and if you don’t believe it, then you’re playing the wrong game. While it’s true that in certain instances you can beat the casino at their own game (in the form of advanced binary options strategies), cheating is never recommended.
As time went on, gambling became less of a stigma and more of a recognized addiction, which was likely helped along by the appearance of TV shows like Jackass and The Richest, which showcased people who were openly obsessed with winning money. This may also be attributed to the fact that more and more people are beginning to see gambling as a form of self-expression, as they get to indulge in something they enjoy while also participating in a game which has a high degree of strategy and chance. Self-expression is a large component of art today and something which really resonates with people who enjoy games of chance, as it gives them the opportunity to indulge in something their minds are focused on—whether that be art, business, or self-improvement—while experiencing an exhilarating rush of adrenaline. Artistic types and athletes tend to be among the biggest proponents of the theory.
The Business Of Golf
People can also enjoy golf for its thrills and spills, as there are many exciting elements which come with the sport. The fact that you’re playing against another person adds an extra dimension of competitiveness which is both exhilarating and at times very stressful. In order to provide a better experience for its customers, a golf resort will often times incorporate all of these elements into its game plan, adding another dimension of strategy to an already mentally and physically challenging sport. It is also important to note here that not all golf courses are created equal, as some are better than others when it comes to adding an exciting element to the game. This is why it’s important to do your research before booking a course, whether it’s a public or private one.
To conclude, it’s important to acknowledge that there are many issues surrounding gambling and not all of them have negative connotations. Some people enjoy participating in games of chance as a form of entertainment, while others may use them to help manage their stressors and anxieties. Unfortunately, the stigma still exists for those who choose to participate in these games for which they feel they have a gambling problem, as they may experience problems in the future with a court or law enforcement official, depending on the jurisdiction. In order to avoid this, it’s important to learn how to behave around gambling and not do anything which could be perceived as suspicious. For instance, if you go to a casino and lose a lot of money, there are certainly factors which could be used against you. However, if you go up to the casino counter and ask for a marker to bet on the ponies, you could easily become the target of a scam.