I think I’m going to have to get some of those Gamble Aware leaflets and leave them in strategic places around the house… because I fear that Carole may be at the top of a slippery slope.
She went out this morning to get some cash from the cash machine at Tesco. As she left, she asked if we needed anything to which I replied “milk”. She came back without milk. But she had, instead, been into Corals and put a bet on the Huddersfield Town match.
This is how it starts. I used to work in a betting shop – it paid my way through Uni and beyond until the hours became stupidly unsociable and 50% of the horse racing became virtual. I have seen it happen. Someone goes in, puts on a bet which then wins and they start to think they are unstoppable. And then that’s it, they’re putting money on bets before money on foodstuffs.
And, worryingly, Carole’s skipped straight to that part by clearly squandering any milk money on Huddersfield Town to win, drawn in by a bet in the window which wasn’t the bet she ended up putting on.
And even more worryingly, she has a very addictive personality. She can become attached to things in an instant. I’m going to have to keep an eye on her. If she comes home with the Racing Post instead of her occasional purchase of the Daily Mail then I know we’re in trouble. But that in itself is a better proposition, because the Daily Mail is the source of all evil whereas the Racing Post is only a gateway to poverty and destitution and a house full of tiny pens.
The only thing in her favour, which makes me think the bug hasn’t bitten yet, is that she didn’t run straight out for her winnings.
She probably needed more time to think about what to back next…