March 28, 2008 at 20:37 #154350GrimesParticipant
- Total Posts 1891
The term, "professional gambler", though used, mostly, I imagine, for convenience, is actually an oxymoron, isn’t it?
If you simply take calculated risks to earn a living, and you lose, like it or lump it, you are a gambler. If you make a living that provides for your requirements, then you are a professional bettor/investor – but not a gambler.
I thought of the term, "self-employed actuary", but there are and so many imponderables to try to take into account, many, only recognisable from experience, before making your decision, it’s surely more of an art than a science.
I suspect the most successful bettors financially are good at thinking on their feet, like the money-market traders. Those of us who have a lot else going on in our minds subliminally (not talking about sex or anything specific), as most of us do, are not sharp-minded enough to capitalise as efficiently on the money-making possiblities.
An old pal of mine who used to lecture at Heriot Watt, teaches Arabic privately now (having picked it up from reading newspapers!) and still, as far as I know, translates, as well, though he is, as the Americans say, "independenlty wealthy". Anyway, he seems to me to personify that expression, "having a mind like a steel trap". He’d look at a page of legal text in a foreign language and in a few seconds, understand the essence of it, and almost write a summary of it in translation.
I used to kid him about it, telling him he was a brigand, but I fear I encouraged him to overdo it, because he got a rollicking from one of his suppliers – maybe Sheik Mohammed! – for taking liberties and not sticking more closely to the text.
He taught me a lot, though I wasn’t a very apt pupil, but what this is leading up to is, that he used to laugh at the mess my desk was in, and couldn’t understand how I could translate texts with the TV going on in the background.
There’s always a trade-off with intelligence. He could make a fat living by using his extremely sharp and highly organised mind… while I could have the TV on in the background, while I was translating, but stumbled along from financial crisis to financial crisis. I wonder who’d made the best trade-off?
I once happened to mention to him that I had a card index of words and expressions in a little plastic box. It was about 6" by 4" and 3" deep, which I found very useful. He said, "What, you mean like this?" and pointed to a card index consisting of a rack of three shelves, each about 3′ long.March 28, 2008 at 20:43 #154353Andrew HughesMember
- Total Posts 1904
EC was an interesting, knowledgeable correspondent with many a novel take on race analysis who had a healthy scepticism (verging on an unhealthy cynicism) for conventional received wisdom. For that he was worthy of applause.
I will second those sentiments. At times I think he allowed others to wind him up too easily, but he was one of the few posters I always read when I first joined the forum and he personally was very helpful for me when I contacted him about compiling speed figures.
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