Ann and Bill have just been for a visit. For reasons I needn't go into, we decided to place a convoluted £4 bet at the bookmaker's yesterday. The bet was to predict the first- and second-placed horses in one of the races at Goodwood. As I don't know the first thing about gambling (apart from the fact that one should never bet on horse number 4 in Hong Kong), Bill placed the bet for me.

"Hey, 3–40, they sound like pretty good odds!" I remarked, reading the receipt. "Doesn't that mean that for every £3 we bet, we get £40 back? Or does it mean that for every £40 we bet, we get £3 back?"

"Neither," replied Bill. "That's the time of the race."

See also: System

Filed under: Nonsense

Richard Carter

A fat, bearded chap with a Charles Darwin fixation.

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