“Gambling is bad news.”
“It’s only bad news if you lose.”
Teen Freud turned nineteen last week. For those of you who don’t live in Canada, that’s a milestone birthday. Nineteen (eighteen in some places) means you’re an adult and legally allowed to do things like buy alcohol, get married without parental permission, or enter licensed clubs like casinos.
Shortly after I heard that exchange between Teen Freud and his buddy, the two guys tromped inside and informed us they were off to the casino to see what it was all about. When I repeated the admonition that gambling was bad news, Teen Freud laughed and shrugged it off.
I headed out to buy groceries. The boys (they may be nineteen but they’re still boys to me) headed to the casino. When I came home, Mr. Petrol Head was in the kitchen. He looked worried. “Teen Freud called,” he said. “It was the worst possible outcome for his first visit to a casino.”
My stomach sank like a dead turtle. My thoughts immediately went to a worst case place: a fight, a shooting, a fire. The boys had only taken seventy dollars between them. Losing that wasn’t what I’d call a worst possible outcome. It was a most likely outcome. “What happened?”
Mr. Petrol Head looked grave. “He won.”
I should have known. Teen Freud wasn’t just born under a lucky star. He was born on a bed of them, with a star blanket the size of Texas covering him. The kid is lucky. Lucky with a capital L.
“How much?” I asked.
Before he could answer, Teen Freud and his bemused buddy burst through the door. He’d won $430 on a twenty dollar investment. But, he informed us, he didn’t stick around because he was putting $400 of it in the bank. Plus, he was shaking so hard he couldn’t hit the buttons on the slots after that.
Pleased that he was showing some level of responsibility, we went back to putting away the groceries. As the boys headed to the TV room, I heard broke buddy suggest they spend the remaining money on pizza.
“No way,” said Teen Freud. “That money’s going into my vice fund. I’m going back next week.”