Gambling Curiosities

Gambling is not only about emotions and the search for the goal of winning. It is also interesting and unusual things. What can happen while gambling can be found below.

• Monkeys can learn to use the money. Capuchins that were taught to exchange silver discs for treats began budgeting for foods they liked, buying more of something when the price dropped and started gambling. Eventually, rich monkeys even figured out they could pay each other for sex.

• Gambling for cash is illegal in Japan. Instead, balls won from games are exchanged for prizes or tokens. These items are then exchanged for cash at a place nominally separate from the parlor.

• A gambler named Archie Karas went to Las Vegas with $50, gambled it up to $40 million over the next two years, only to lose it all in three weeks.

Archie Karas

• The sandwich was supposedly invented by the Earl of Sandwich, who was so addicted to gambling that he refused to leave the table for meals and demanded something he could eat with one hand. It caught on amongst other players, who ordered “the same as sandwich” thus, “the sandwich”.

• “Hell on Wheels” was originally used to describe the itinerant collection of flimsily assembled gambling houses, dance halls, saloons, and brothels that followed the army of Union Pacific railroad workers westward as they constructed the First Transcontinental Railroad in 1860s North America.

• Iranian tennis showman Mansour Bahrami fled to France where he tried to meet the higher living costs by gambling all his savings in a casino. He lost everything on the first night.

• Because gambling is illegal in South Carolina, beach tourists have the option to pay companies to take them into international waters (outside state jurisdiction) via boat in order to gamble.

• The first slot-type machine was invented in 1891, but was very different than the machines we know today. The game was based off of poker hands, and players would pay a nickel and pull a lever which would spin five ‘drums’ (reels) that contained 50 card faces. Payout on successful spins was not dependent on the machine, but rather the bar that owned it. Prizes could be whatever bar owners wanted it to be, such as a free beer for getting a pair or cigars for a royal flush.

• You may notice in baccarat and some other the games the “shoe” that is used to store cards. This concept was thought up in Cuba in the 1950s by casino owners who suspected that their dealers were helping out players in exchange for tips. Having the shoe, plus increasing the number of decks used, cut down dealer cheating and increased the house’s profit.

• Roulette is also known as “The Devil’s Game”. The primary reason behind it being called the devil’s game is that all the numbers (0 to 36) present on the wheel sum up to 666, which is famously known as the devil’s number or the “number of beast”.

• Back in 3,000 BC, dice cubes were uncovered from Egyptian tombs. It is believed Egyptians enjoyed playing Backgammon-type games and gambling was already part of daily life during that time, as was in Mesopotamia.

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