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Poker shouldn't be just about winning big; Gambling Brief >.

Byline: Jon Barbuti

I HATE the January sales so if you're someone who enjoys picking up a bargain, you might want to stop reading now.

You've just had Christmas and you should be with family and friends. You've got whole piles of new stuff - more things than you could ever need.

As a result, the garage, loft and spare room are full of things, but still you head out to buy more stuff in the sales.

I can't stand the stupidity of people who fall for it.

I watched the news the other day and people were saying they had queued eight hours outside an electrical store just to get a bargain television. Two things - first, that offer will be on the website, or a better offer will be.

Second, it's old stock and shops sell old stock at a discount throughout the year.

There are supposedly great sales every bank holiday but it's all a myth - there are discounts in every shop on every day.

It's only during the sales that people actually fall for it.

But what I hate more than anything is the greed - the idea that Christmas and the festive period has become a time to simply ask for money - not even vouchers any more - to be spent in the sales.

I despise how rife greed is, the pursuit of money and the desire to do anything to save it and yet I love poker. How do those two positions marry? Poker books - and especially magazines - focus on the glory of money, the big wins, the big winners, how to build your bankroll, how to stop leaks - but is that why we play? It's not really why I got into it.

Most people first experience poker with family members, playing for 2ps that will be given back at the end of the game, yet they're the most fun games.

The joy is in trying to win, trying to outwit someone, the amounts aren't important.

I remember a game I played on a ferry in the Hebrides as a 14-year-old where I won pounds 3. I'm probably being reactionary but I can't help feel that for many, the motives are more about maximising win rates and squeezing every last penny of profit they can. If you ask me, that's a great shame.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jan 5, 2011
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