Always bet on black

I almost have a gambling problem.

I don't actually gamble much, and when I do I manage to limit the amount I risk, through a series of strategies--for example, limiting how much I bring to the table, or getting my casino fix in unthreatening environments like our local branch of Casino McVegas.

But I always feel like I am on the verge of having a gambling problem. I have the urge to risk it all!

Enter Swoopo.com. They call it "Entertainment Shopping." This kind of thing is really dangerous to me, because it is gambling in the guise of of something else. These kinds of things have potential to slip past my anti-gambling defenses.

I mean, for goodness sake, check this out:

Dude bought an $1,100 for $55.96.

Of course, "Stenvenson" had to get lucky. He had to be the last person willing to bid, at 60 cents per bid. In his particular case, he had already bid 214 times, meaning that in the end, he spent $55.96 on the television, but $129.00 on the bids.

To be sure, that's still a great bargain. But had he not been so lucky, he could have dropped that $129 and received nothing in return.

Like any well run house, Swoopo takes a substantial rake. It was a 2¢ auction, so the website brought in over $34,000 in bidding fees, more than enough to cover the price of the TV.

My advice is, don't try it. It's a sucker's game. Myself, I've purchased some bids, but like I said, I almost have a problem.

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