People sometimes ask me why I don’t gamble, or why I love launching into unwanted explanations as to why gambling companies are the devices of Satan. In theory, I should love Paddy Power. They’re sort of Irish, like me. And better than that, they spend their days making mega bucks and they absolutely adore exploiting and robbing the poor. It’s sort of like my dream business model, so why do I want them to fail so badly?
Could it be their zany advertising, where sporting memes, contrived personalities and tap-in humour are made out to be more important and relevant than what’s actually happening out there on the pitch? Could it be that, in a moment of weakness, I find myself feeling sorry for the numbskulls they exploit? Or could it be that they, like all bookmakers, do everything they can to avoid paying out to winners, up to and including shutting down the accounts of people that win too much?
I know you all have me down as a sporting God, given my prowess at football, cricket, hurling, curling and karting. Unfortunately, if we want to get into specifics, I’m actually an expert at football hooliganism, eating sandwiches and having drinks during the cricket breaks, threatening pensioners with hurleys, curling my lip in snobbish arrogance when I put one over the lower classes, and karting dozens of cans of beer around the supermarket before buying them for a pittance.
I’m Irish, which means boxing is in my blood. I’ve never actually stepped into the ring mind you, or done anything remotely like boxing training. I couldn’t even eat that foul pitcher full of egg yolks like Rocky does in that one film.
I can run a little bit, which would surely be useful when I come up against some opponent 3 times my size and hailing from a country with a Human Development Index ranking 4 times worse than Ireland’s. Whether that’s me running towards the opponent or running to safety well away from him, I’ll let you be the judge of.
I’ve talked an awful lot before about schoolyard fights, and how they all tend to suffer from the same fate as heavyweight boxing these days: full of complete mismatches, too much grabbing and sweat and not enough wild swinging haymakers, and usually stopped way too early before any real punishment can be meted out.
I’m going to let you in on a dirty little secret – I love emulating games, I simply love it. I can’t get enough of the stuff. Configuring BIOS, downloading Good ROM sets, jailbreaking modern consoles to get the bogey games up and running, come at me. Of course, I love collecting the actual legal physical games as well, but would I be unreasonable to suggest that ROMs and emulators are the best invention since sliced bread and recordable television?