Picture this; You are playing poker with your friends while having a few drinks, then you argue a little bit about who is the better player. Then the betting starts, and you agree that if I lose, I will change my legal names to a nasty 100-character name provided the government allows it, and sadly you lose. Now that is what happened to one man in New Zealand in 2014. It was just one of the countless crazy bets that people make around the world all the time. They say life is all about gambling; what matters is what you stake, which is why you will find these crazy stakes astonishing. These 10 people just didn’t care about the odds and consequences of their bets.
Saving FedEx With $5000
Who thought blackjack winnings could save the largest freight company in the world? But it did. In FedEx’s early days, Fred Smith, the founder, had a hard time footing a $24,000 fuel bill needed to keep the company running for another week. When he was denied a loan in the banks, he took the company’s last $5000 and went to the Blackjack table in Las Vegas.
Six wins with the company’s last resources earned him $32,000 that helped his little giant to fly planes for one more week. Today FedEx makes over $25 Billion a year and won’t need the blackjack anymore, but that was one crazy bet.
Yeah, this was stupid and didn’t end so well. This happened in 1986 on the doomed Aeroflight Flight 6502, which was caused by the Russian pilot Alexander Kliuyev. Kliuyev had a chat with his co-pilot in which they argued about whether he could land the plane without visual aids. Kliuyev decided to gamble the lives of the 90 people on board by landing the aircraft with cockpit curtains drawn and without the help of the flight controller.
He didn’t slow the plane down, sending it onto the runway at near-full throttle, which sent the plane flipping on its wings. More than 60 people died on the flight while Kliuyev got six years in prison. His co-pilot didn’t get a sentence, which was unfair, considering he was the other half of the bet.
Nothing will change
Times are always unpredictable, which is why no one can confidently tell you that everything in Hollywood will be the same after the next 20 years. However, in 1989, a Welshman who didn’t want the publicity placed a rather odd bet. He staked $30 with a bookmarker that by the year 2000, Home And Away, EastEnders and Neighbours would still be on the screens. He also said that U2 would still be together and playing and that Cliff Richard would be knighted. These were near impossible events with odds of 6479-1. Of course, all the events happened correctly winning him a whole $320,000.
I Bet My Wife
Winning and losing wives in poker is an archaic and demeaning habit, which is why casinos don’t allow people that are out of chips to bet human beings. In 2006, Andrei Karpov ran out of cards while playing his friend Sergey Brodov, so he placed his wife on the table. Brodov won the game and, of course, came for his prize. The beautiful Tatiana Karpov was so angry at her husband’s disrespect and immediately divorced him. She later started a relationship with Sergey and later married him, becoming Tatiana Brodov, all thanks to a poker game.
Sell Everything and Go To Vegas
The trick is not selling everything; it is all about what you bet on! Ashley Ravell became a star in one night when he featured on the famous reality show Double Or Nothing in 2004. He sold everything he had in the UK, and by everything, we mean clothes, shoes and all. He raised $135,300 and went to Las Vegas, staking all of it on the Roulette at the Plaza Hotel/Casino under the view of the cameras and his family. He bet on Red and won the Red 7 earning over $270k. Must’ve been the greatest sigh of relief in history. Anyway, he used the cash to start his own gambling firm.
The Suitcases Gambler
William Leen Bergstrom was not a gambler by trade but happenes to be one of the most famous gamblers in Vegas history. He walked into the Horseshoe casino with a suitcase filled with $777,000 and another suitcase with nothing. It is believed most of the money was borrowed, and he was hoping to cash in on a promotion in the casino, which promised to match the stake of any player on their first bet.
He staked all the money at the craps table and shot a 7 winning another $777,000, which he stuffed in his empty suitcase and left. His ambition had been to bet with $1M, which is why he came back three years later with over $500,000 with which he won big again and disappeared. Bergstrom finally made his $1M stake in March 1984, only this time, he lost all of it. He committed suicide a few days later but still remains one of Vegas’ greatest Gamblers ever.
Flying To The Pub
Of course, no one flies to the pub unless you have a super crazy ego, or you are very drunk or a combination of both. Thomas Fitzpatrick, a US marine pilot, was suffering from both when he landed a plane next to a pub twice. The first, in September 1956, after having a bet with his friends that he could fly at night, with no radio or lights from New Jersey to New York.
He stole a plane from an airfield in New Jersey, and sure enough, flew it right onto 91st street in front of his favorite pub. The owner of the plane was also amused, and so he didn’t press charges, so Fitzpatrick was only charged a $100 fine. The second time was two years later when his drinking buddies on 187th street didn’t believe his story about the first flight. He stole another plane again and landed it right outside the pub they were drinking in. This time, the judge sent him to jail for six months.
No 7 154 Times
The 7 is, of course, the number that is hit most commonly when you roll the dice, which is why betting against it is not very wise. However, betting against the 7 154 times, well, now that is crazy because the odds of not hitting a seven with a pair of dice 154 times is 56 trillion to one. When you win all those times, that is a miracle, and indeed it was for this lady in Vegas.
Patricia Demauro was playing the craps for the first time when she decided to stake against the highest odds in craps history. She rolled all those times winning big each time until four hours later when she finally rolled a 7 after making some serious money and setting an unbreakable world record.
Branson VS Fernandes
Sir Richard Branson founded the Virgin group, while Tony Fernandes is the majority shareholder in Air Asia. In 2010, the two were supporting opposite sides to win the Abu Dhabi Formula One Grand Prix. They made a bet that whosoever’s team loses would serve on the other’s airline as a stewardess.
Branson lost and decided to keep his end of the bet in 2013 on an Air Asia charity flight, which was also boarded by Tony Fernandes. Branson put on a wig, a Stewardess’ uniform, and red lipstick and served food and drinks on the flight while also making in-flight announcements. He also got his payback by tipping a whole tray of drinks on his friend Fernandes before the five-hour flight ended.
The World Cup Or I Go Naked
Doria Tiller, a French weathergirl, was angry with the French soccer team in 2013 when they lost 2.0 to Ukraine in the first leg. She promised her viewers on camera that she would strip naked if the national team managed to overturn the result in the second leg in Paris and qualify for the world cup. Of Course, France has one of the best soccer teams in the world, and they beat Ukraine 3.0 in France and so Doria had to go nude on the screens. Well, she gave a long-distance shot of herself running naked in a field, but at least she kept the promise.