Angry Marco

10 Jan

I remember one instance when I got “really angry.” I was in Berlin on a trip that I spent 3 months working to pay for. Berlin appealed to me from the first time I stepped out on its burdened streets, laden with rich history and stories of centuries. Berlin is like no other city I have been to. On my first sight seeing day through the city, I was stopped by a crowd of people cheering for a group of men playing a simple gambling game. The game consisted of a man hiding one white ball under one of three cups. He then quickly moved the cups in different positions. It seemed very easy to me to follow the ball and I got it right 5 out of 5 times.

It was weird to me that people were betting money on such a simple game – and losing. It was obvious that there was some kind of scam behind it. A guy drove by on his bike warning the watchers by yelling loudly, “It’s a scam!”I am still not sure how it happened, but I fell for it. I stepped forward out of the crowd, and pointed at one of the cups where, I was sure, the ball was going to appear. The men, alerted by the lucrative, naïve subject (me) surrounded and explained that I have to bet the money before they disclose the ball. Since I just got to Germany I only had big bills in my wallet. I wanted to bet a twenty Euro bill, but only had a one hundred euro bill. I opened my wallet in front of them (another big mistake) and explained, “I only have a 100.” What I meant with the gesture was that I do not want to play. But they persuaded me quickly that it was a sure win.

Everything that followed happened fast. They took my bill, lifted the cup that I pointed at and to my surprise, there was no ball. They spoke a few consoling words, packed their things and left. I was baffled.Everything happened in such a short period of time, that I couldn’t react. It didn’t take me long to understand that I had been had. Scammed. Bamboozled in Berlin. I was furious and helpless. The helplessness only added to my anger. My own stupidity must have been marked on my sleeve before I even spoke with these sneaky street vendors. I had been blinded by the easy win and could not think rationally. When the full extent of my error hit me I became even more angry. All those hours that I had spent at the Swimming pool life-guarding were gone within seconds. And I could not do anything to get them back. I had to sit down to call myself. I was so angry with myself and with these cunning men that had taken advantage of my idiocy. The feeling in me was so powerful and negative. I wanted to do something about it, get it out of me, punch something, yell, protest. But I did not. I chose to calm myself down and move on. I had learned a lesson, “Don’t trust anyone that wants your money.”

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One Response to “Angry Marco”

  1. andreea Sunday, January 13, 2008 at 9:59 pm #

    Sad lesson… Anyway, your not the first and for sure not the last in this situations…

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