April 02, 2013

Game On. . . er Off

Apparently, the new Minnesota Vikings stadium, which was shoved towards state taxpayers not unlike an oversized pill into an unwilling dog's mouth--IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD! JUST TAKE IT! YOU'LL LIKE IT!--has bumped into a bit of a funding hiccup.

Specifically, Minnesotans aren't gambling via e-Gaming recklessly like we were projected to be doing at this point. Not even close, in fact. Not even from the sun to Neptune in proximity.

Electronic pulltab gambling, or "e-Gambling" to use the parlance of our times, was anticipated to make up a huge financial chunk of the public "contribution" towards constructing a stadium in which large men will transport a ball back and forth for our amusement.

As the term implies, e-Gambling would replace pulltabs, thus obviating the irritating step of snapping back cardboard to confirm you've lost money and allowing you to use a tablet touchscreen to more efficiently dispose of all that unwanted income.

It makes at least some logical sense, when you think about it. After all, if there's one thing that comes to mind about the Vikings, it's staring at a screen, waiting for something good to happen, but being routinely and perpetually disappointed.

Unfortunately, we Minnesotans are nothing if not a pragmatic bunch of penny-pinchers. It's almost as if we have the audacity to spend our money on things like food, and clothes and mortgages, and other such frivolities.

Thus, the charitable gambling projections have fallen desperately short, although I have to admit whoever came up with the term "charitable gambling" is wicked good at marketing two completely contradictory words. It's like saying "voluntary cancer" or "enthusiastic colonoscopy."

How short have projections fallen? Shorter than any expectation of a good Ryan Reynolds movie, to be honest. Early estimates said there would be 2,500 e-Gambling establishments up and running by October of 2012. By late February OF THIS YEAR, there were fewer than 120 such charitable gambling dens.

Many Minnesota media outlets, which aren't known for mathematical prowess, have referred to such a shortfall as "lagging." Those of us with rudimentary division skills, however, tend to notice that's less than ONE HALF OF ONE PERCENT (CORRECTION: 5 percent. But, you know what? That's still really sucky) of projections, even after spotting the projections FIVE MONTHS. But, hey, who's counting?

Thankfully, our elected officials are nothing if not creative when confronted by such an astronomical financial shortfall. They've built in a fail-safe funding mechanism called "taxes" that can be put into effect at a moment's notice to ensure there are adequate dollars in place to ensure construction will proceed on a stadium where large men will be comfortably able to regularly disappoint us stupidly loyal Minnesota football fans.

Because Christian Ponder's worth it. Right? RIGHT?!!!

Posted by Ryan at April 2, 2013 10:44 AM | TrackBack

I've given up caring about the major league sports franchises in this state in any way, shape or form. I only have room in my brain for a certain number of things, and they have been displaced by more-important concerns.

Like when the line for Popeye's becomes reasonable so a guy can get a biscuit and a chicken leg.

Posted by: Keith at April 4, 2013 11:08 AM

120 is a half percent of 2500? You might want to recalculate that, Mr Math-Genius ;o)

Posted by: Tarantulady at April 9, 2013 09:26 AM

Yeah, yeah, I know. It's 5 percent. Unfortunately, I didn't realize my calculation error until AFTER this ran as a column in two local newspapers. Pretty sure I'll be hearing a thing or three about this particular boo-boo.

Posted by: Ryan at April 10, 2013 12:34 PM
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