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A lot of words get written about the "punting bank" but I doubt much has changed over the years and I suspect the smart people have them and the serial contributors to the various win pools don't.

When I was a kid growing up in Brisbane, we quite often used to go over to my great uncle's place in the leafy suburb of Greenslopes where they had a sprawling old Queenslander built on stumps and a huge workshop underneath. Whenever we slept over, we kids were always banished to the sleep out which we shared with the biggest safe I had ever seen which was always locked. It held great fascination for me as you can possibly imagine.

Uncle B was always in his "workshop" downstairs in the mornings listening to the then racing station 4BK (which no longer exists) and in the afternoons he would simply be no where to be found. Occasionally in the evenings he would ask me to get him a bottle of Bulimba beer out of the special fridge in his workshop, where he was allowed to drink, but was banned from taking the dreadful stuff upstairs by Aunty P who was a strict Presbyterian and played the organ at the local church. Uncle B also had a milk run (back in the days when you used to get the bottles home delivered) so I always guessed he got all of his work done in the early mornings and that was that for the day. Wrong!

He was of course running an SP book in the afternoons at the local pub that was apparently quite successful - well certainly successful enough to take himself and the lovely Aunty P on an ocean voyage to Japan to see the 1964 Tokyo Olympics which they later had endless slide evenings about showing off all the sights of the far east.

None of this would ever have come out of the family secrets cupboard except he had the misfortune to get busted by the local constabulary and spent some time "working for the government". Poor old Aunty P never quite got over the shame of it all which of course never quite seemed as shameful as when they were mixing with the "nice people" on the Fairstar sailing to Japan and having a wonderful time!

As the story got discreetly passed down through the family at the endless gatherings, the one thing that still stood out to me was the big solid safe that was still on the verandah when they eventually sold that home - probably because it was just too heavy to move! Good old Uncle B later told me how he funded the entire thing out of that safe, never drawing on any family monies and old Aunty P never knew how much was in there at any time.

The old bugger had a wonderful life - his only moments of stress in gambling coming about when the Detective Inspector from the Woolloongabba Police Station (used to be just outside the Gabba) busted him in the act at the old Morrison Hotel.

So - the moral to the story - and there has to be one, doesn't there? Your punting bank MUST be entirely separate from your living bank as, if you are in a relationship with anyone, the "living bank" is for everyone to share - not just for your selfish pursuits. To do otherwise is to be unfair on people that may actually care about you.

And if you should lose this punting bank, it is not going to cause chaos and havoc to anyone else but you (deservedly) and you must suspend your gambling activities until you can build up another one in a manner that does not cause financial inconvenience to others.

If you don't, you'll be under more psychological pressure "not to lose" and will consequently keep making bad decisions under pressure. Similarly if you go down the financial suicide path of borrowing money from a credit card to fund the bank, the pressure will be even greater and the "pendulum of disaster" becomes even wilder in the swings and wreaks even more havoc. The end result is you being, as I wrote at the start of this, a serial contributor, and I'm sure you don't desire that fate.




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