Let's Spin Again

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
The allure of those one-arm bandits.

Submitted: November 03, 2018

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Submitted: November 03, 2018

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Let’s Spin Again

How many can honestly say that they have never once been tempted to deposit that coin and pull down that handle, sending those rings to spin? Not many I bet, although I have to admit it’s been a long time for me.

Are they even still sitting there, alone or maybe next to a jukebox, in bars?

There is someone there trying their luck. One go, then another, not one coin paid out. They start to turn away, then hand in pocket dig out another couple of coins. Still nothing so dejectedly they walk away, back to their beer to do one of two things; turn their back on it completely, or to sit there glowering at it as though daring it to pay out to someone else.

I'll give it a while, watch as a few people drop in a single coin, set those rings of symbols spinning, then shrug and walk away. It’s got to pay out soon, I don’t have a clue of the odds but it stands to reason....doesn’t it?

Well, I’ve got a few coins in my pocket so I’ll give it a go, careful to avoid the eyes of the one who had tried so hard. And what do you know, first spin and I get a payout. A tiny one, mind you, only enough for ten spins. I line them up and feed them in, each time feeling sure I’m going to hit the jackpot and each time missing. One more coin and this will be it.

Missed again! It was so close though, there is a definite temptation to keep on with it, but I resist, head back to my seat, and can now share a sardonic smile of commiseration with the person from earlier. We have both now been beaten by it, after all.

Then this big guy walks up to it, 6’2” and built like a tank. He could probably tear the thing apart with his bare hands if he wanted to. But no, he feeds in a single coin, pulls down the handle, and there is the clatter of coins as, in one single attempt, he scoops up the jackpot. He doesn’t even put in another coin; why should he, he must have cleared it out.

I want to put my head in my hands. If I’d just tried one more time that would have been me. I look away from it, feeling thoroughly dejected.

Not long after there’s a new machine, a table. Air hockey or so it says. No winning, no losing, you pay your money and get your time and a lot of skinned knuckles in the process. But hey, it’s a hell of a lot less painful than that slot machine.


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