Wednesday, May 8, 2019

The betting pool

Much like with Olympic Curling and The Men's World Cup, I have decided that my library needs a betting pool for The Women's World Cup.

So I have become, once again, a bookie.

My job, as self-assigned, is to develop a scheme for this pool. It is to inform people how it works and to solicit sign-ups to fill all the slots (there are 24 teams). It is to collect everyone's money. It is to make and distribute the (sometimes fancy and decorative) materials for the (random) assignments of the teams. It is to keep track of who has what team. And it is to dispense all the winning prizes at the end.

It is a lot of work!

It might be too much work!

I learn a ton of stuff from this process, although, judging from this being the third pool I have run in a year and a half, I'm pretty sure over the course of a few months I forget everything I learned. I believe this is the only explanation for all the new pools I come up with.

Which is a pretty good reason for writing down everything I have learned here:

What I have learned from running the workplace betting pools

1. "Can I think about it?" means "No."

2. If I humorously say to someone who asked if they can think about it, imprudently, that I have learned that "Can I think about it?" means "No", and they say that's not true of them because they are a unique individual so don't be so sure, they still mean "No."

3. If they act real interested and ask a lot of questions about it, but don't say "Sign me up", it means "No."

4. "I will get back to you." means "Let us never speak of this again." I, however, will get back to them seven times though because I have A LOT OF SLOTS TO FILL!

5. While I tell them they don't have to take part in this pool and that they should feel comfortable not taking part in it, it doesn't mean I won't be personally devastated when they do say no.

I will be.

6.  I never win the pool, but the whole thing being over is its own kind of victory.

7. The fact that running a company pool is sort of kind of fun does not preclude my waking bolt upright at four in the morning thinking "Where on Earth will I find the last six people to take part in this?!"

8. If someone said "No" to the previous pool they will never, ever say yes to this one.

9. Because someone was an enthusiastic participant in the last pool does not mean they won't recuse themselves this time for mysterious reasons.

10. When they do recuse themselves they will do it by asking if they can think about it.

11. I can promise you that even though dozens of people are now involved in this pool in one way or another I am the ONLY person on earth thinking about it.

12.  I mean, except for you. I'm sorry I had to drag you into it. But, now that I have, I still have three teams available if you're interested. 

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