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ANZAC Day Gambling an Australian Tradition 2006-04-25
The 25th of April is celebrated in Australia as ANZAC Day, a day of remembrance for Australian and New Zealand soldiers fallen in battle. The day is traditionally commemorated by dawn services and military parades, and marked by minutes of respectful silence.
Over 22,000 returned servicemen marched in Sydney alone; with many thousands more watching, as a part of services across the continent, with marches in every town and meetings in every retuned services club.
It is also the one day of the year that police will turn a blind eye to gambling in the streets. Amidst drunken reveries from returned servicemen, people can be seen in bars and clubs nationwide playing and betting on a curious game called two-up, and this year was no different.
Two up looks essentially like a group of mature adults playing a kindergarten game. A circle of around 6 metres (20 feet) is chalked on the ground, with one person standing in the centre, called a "spinner". The spinner holds a flat strip of wood called a "Kip" around 20cm (8in) long, resembling a ruler, with two coins balanced on one end.
Everyone present then bets on the outcome of the spin (heads or tails) and the spinner will then toss the coins into the air using the kip. The coins must the thrown higher than the height of the spinner, and land within the circle. If both coins land on the same face, then bets are paid off, if the coins show one "heads" and one "tails" the round is a tie and the spinner spins again. If five ties come up in a row, all players lose.
(By Ela)