Saturday, December 24, 2005

Poker on College Campuses

USA Today recently reported about how the game of poker has invaded college campuses on its way to become a mainstream phenomenon.

Last year while working for a financial services company, I was shocked to see how deep young recent college graduates who were mostly male were into gambling overall.  If their clients only knew how much they gambled, then they would not stay in business for long.  It will probably catch up with most of them over time anyway.

A lot of the risk taking at that age can be attributed to the feelings of invincibility that most males have who are 20 to 34 years old.  There may be some degree of immaturity but after achieving a significant milestone as graduating from college, there is little room for other causes.  Graduating from college makes one feel that you are ready to take on the world and other worlds all at once.

I was recently wondering if I had lost something from my youth and I could not quite tell what it was.  Now I realize that having the non compete agreement expire has rejuvenated me more than I previously thought that it would.  Under normal circumstances, there are more than enough achievements I can point to that others would risk life and limb to be able to have appear on their records.  But throughout 2005, living up to my full potential did not seem to happen as I would have preferred.

It does not take a lot of matches to burn down a house or anything fire will consume.  Just the proper placement of the ignited catalyst and enough fuel will cause the most driest environment to go up in flames.

This relates to the 20 to 34 years old group in the extent that the 18 and 19 year olds are just gaining enough confidence to master their new environments (college and recognized adulthood for those not attending college) after graduating from high school.  Now that a new level of confidence has been attained on the new level, new experimentation is likely to happen.

But the internet is an accomplice as well since it can mask visual cues and age as well as other physical characteristics.

I just hope that the various state governments and the federal branches are equipped for the reckless way that many young men are allowing their lives to go down the drain especially when the amount of risk taking in American society could be better managed and significantly reduced versus the chase for the temporary wealth and thrill.

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