Gambling is a booming global industry, with an estimated revenue of $150 billion a year. Players of all shapes and sizes enjoy the thrill of placing a bet and hoping to strike it lucky. These days, casino, poker and sports betting sites are dominating the gambling space, taking our fascination with gambling to the next level. But sometimes, gamblers can take things a bit too far, as evident by this list of some of the most ridiculous bets ever placed.
The Big Burger Challenge
Howard Lederer is one of the most famous poker players in the world, having won two World Series of Poker titles and earning almost $6 million from live poker tournaments. But it seems Lederer’s appetite for food is as strong as his appetite for gambling. When doctors told Lederer would need to become a vegan to save him from an early death, fellow gambler David Grey took the opportunity to bet $10 000 on Lederer never eating a cheeseburger again. Lederer took and challenge and easily wolfed down the burger, winning him a tidy sum of $10 000. But at what cost?
Betting On Your Life
Jon Matthews saw the silver lining in his bleak cancer diagnosis by deciding to bet on his life. Given just five months to live, Matthews decided to bet on how long he would survive. Matthews miraculously survived his first year after diagnosis, netting a cool $8,300. The second year he earned an addition $8,300. The odds of him surviving the third year increased to 100-1, pocketing him $16 000. Unfortunately, Matthews did not see this as he passed away in May 2010, but he certainly went out with a bang and $16 600 richer.
Super Bowl Prop Bets
The Super Bowl is one of the most-watched sporting events in the world, and also the biggest in terms of gambling. Sportsbooks eagerly await the start of the season as football and betting enthusiasts go crazy placing bets. One of the more fun side bets is Super Bowl prop bets, which can go from silly to downright ridiculous in mere minutes. While the winning spreads are more sensible, these prop bets add an extra dose of entertainment to the event. These bets range from bets on an earthquake hitting the stadium to the outfit of the musical performer, and what colour drink will be poured on the winning coach. Super Bowl 2016 took things up a notch by bets on the colour of Beyoncé’s shoes and Stephen Curry’s attire.
Gambling your Wife Away
A word to the wise – if you are on a bad streak, just leave. This advice would have really helped Andrei Karpov, who got a little carried away when he feel a little short during a card game with opponent Sergey Brodov. In a move no one expected, or recommends, Karpov put his wife up as a stake. Suffice it to say, his wife was not very impressed, and after Karpov lost the bet, she promptly left him as well. Wagering on his wife leaving him once she found out about his offer would probably have been a safer bet.
Not the Breast Idea
Brian Zembic was always taking up strange bets, but this one really took the cake. After winning several unique challenges, which included him living in a bathroom and sleeping in a box for a month, Zembic took things further in 1996 by accepting a $100 000 to have breast implants and to keep them in for one whole year! Not only did Zembic get the surgery, but he also kept them for many years after, and gained celebrity status in the process. Although he has said that money isn’t everything and that he would have the implants removed if his daughter asked him to. Seems like a good idea.