For displaced, misplaced, and nostalgic ex-Brooklynites

Re: Betting in Brooklyn


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Posted by Matty from Flatbush on Saturday, May 6th 2017:

In Reply to: Re: Betting in Brooklyn posted by Bobby O on Saturday, May 6th 2017:

On a freezing night in February of 1964, four of us fifteen year olds were hanging out around PS 217 as we always did, this time sitting on the step of the Casa Del Rey on Newkirk and Coney Island Avenue. We had a transistor radio and were about to listen to the Sonny Liston vs the then Cassius Clay heavyweight title fight. You either loved Clay or hated him. That's the way it was with us. I loved him. One of my friends who hated him kept shouting his mouth off about what Liston would do to him. So we made some bets. My friend, Hilly Schneider, who wanted Liston, wound up betting $500, giving odds up to 5-1 to the two of us who wanted Clay, even though Liston was about an 8-1 favorite. Of course, $500 was an impossible amount for a fifteen year old in 1964. It took Hilly about three years to pay us about $50 of the $500 before we went our own separate ways and forgot about it.

It was also around that time that I learned to play craps. Of course, we played it in the lobby of Leader Lanes where we were promptly caught by the owner, Mr. D, a scary guy who we all thought was entrenched in the Mafia. We felt relief that he only banned us from ever coming back to the Leader, but as I thought, we were too insignificant for him to remember and went back many times to play and bet on the bumper pool tables they had upstairs in the balcony. It was many years later that I found out that Mr. D wasn't the owner and just the manager for the owner, a guy named Storch, who also owned the nearby and amazingly still running Kent Theater.

Reference ID: BK94804



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