The J-Train is coming through and he’s got the dating advice you need!
From the long line of WWN advice columns (i.e. Dear Dotti, Ask a Chimp, etc) comes a new breed of intrepid advice giver. It’s Jared Freid aka J-Train. A frequent dater and lover…
Dude Dating with J-Train: Gambling
Q. Train, I got a problem. I’m a guy who likes to gamble. I bet on sports, I play fantasy football, and I’ll even take my shots at the casino. My lady doesn’t seem to understand all of this. How do I balance the relationship with my lady and lady luck? – Nick Papagiorgio, Yuma, AZ
Nick, excellent question. Men like to gamble – it’s in our blood. We like the strategy, the stress, and the rush. Gambling is like erotic asphyxiation except we talk about it with our friends and there isn’t the threat of death (depending on how high the stakes are). In general, women (the more sensible ones in this equation) can’t seem to understand what we like about gambling. The questions are inevitable: What’s a point spread? Why do you bet so much money? Can’t you watch the Cowboys without something “riding” on it? Does winning mean I get gifts? Why does a guy named “Knuckles Deep” keep calling the house? The questions can get annoying so let me go through the major players here and some tips on how to keep your gambling habit without losing your girl.
This should be easy; your lady needs a night with her girls and you need a night with your boys. The money lost on a poker game outside of Vegas is generally negligible so no issue there. But think hard about where this will take place. Always have it at your single buddy’s place – you don’t have to worry about the mess, and there’s no danger of a female getting home early and spending the rest of the night with a cup up to the wall, listening to you hatch out an assassination plot on your GF’s terrible Bichon Frise (stab it with an icicle – no murder weapon left behind). Your buddy gets to bang anything that walks, any night of the week (though he doesn’t), so it’s the least he can do for you. If you don’t have a single bro, then invest in some tarp and put it under the table. Men have zero self-awareness of their messes; if you don’t put a tarp down, there will literally be blood and urine everywhere, like a CSI crime scene – I can’t even explain it.
The key with sports betting is to get your lady involved. Tell her that if the Patriots win by 5, you guys will have a nice dinner out on the town. If they win by 4 or less, than you guys will have a candle-lit picnic in the house with last night’s leftovers. It’s really a win-win for her; and if you lose, you don’t have to tell her that you can’t afford food and that the candle is more about warmth since you didn’t pay the gas bill.
In all seriousness though, I know your girlfriend hates when you gamble. But understand why; gambling preys upon men’s greatest hubris: the illusion of control. I can’t tell you how many times I hear guys throw out the word ‘lock’ within 3 seconds of hearing a spread – FOR THE FIRST TIME. Really? Do you think that you can ascertain – within 3 seconds – the mistakes of a bunch of math and sports geniuses that are paid very well to make sure you lose money? Do your wallet and your relationship a favor, and admit that you don’t know dick about what’s going to happen in the game, and just bet the money you’re willing to lose.
Final note on this: do you know any guys who are professional gamblers? I do; they don’t pay for jack.
Fantasy is actually insane – I can understand your girlfriend’s frustration. Think about it; you’re pretending to collect a bunch of your favorite players onto one imaginary team, which you will be managing every week with the kind of dedication priests devote to abstinence with everyone but children. If your own mother was drowning in a pool, but you needed to set your fantasy lineup within the next minute, you would set your fantasy lineup because there’s no way you’re starting LaSean McCoy against that stout Ravens defense – sorry, Mom.
But the ladies need to understand that fantasy is more than the religious fervor it comes packaged with; it’s an excuse to spend time with your buddies, a conversation piece, and a more enjoyable way to watch sports. The money put down at the beginning of the season is usually pretty reasonable for an entire season of play. You have nothing to hide. Tell your girlfriend about it, involve her during the games, get her rooting for your players. However, set a rule: only talk about fantasy when football is actually on. Nobody likes the guy that can only have meaningful conversations about Jamaal Charles’s rushing yards, least of all your girlfriend. With a few boundaries, this shouldn’t be a problem; unless you play Call of Duty all the time, too – I can’t help you there.
Casinos should be a great time for everyone involved, so long as your girlfriend isn’t stuck watching you sweat on the blackjack table while you piss away engagement ring money. Make sure she’s involved; have her sit down at the table, teach her a game, go to a show, have a nice dinner – make it a night. If you win, spend a little on her. If you lose, spend a little more on her. There’s so much distraction at casinos, that if you can’t have a good time with your girlfriend, you either shouldn’t be together, or you have a virulent gambling problem. Probably both.
The reason that gambling and dating mix like Mel Gibson and Other Races, is because gambling uses the same resources that dating and relationships do: Time and Money. Your girlfriend sees that you are spending time on a game or a fantasy football league that could be spent on her. And then she sees money that could be spent on dinners and gifts being pissed away to casinos and big guys named ‘Smalls’. Learn to balance the conflict, involve your girlfriend, and she might enjoy herself. So long as you’re self-aware enough to know what irks her (and what your own shortcomings are), you should have no problem navigating that minefield. And if all that doesn’t work, maybe place a bet on a new girlfriend.
Do you have dating questions for J-Train? … Email me!
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