Man loses life savings on New Hampshire carnival game trying to win Xbox

Posted Wednesday, May 1, 2013 9:43 AM | Contributed by Vater

Henry Gribbohm says he attended a Manchester carnival run by New Hampshire-based Fiesta Shows and wanted to win an Xbox Kinect at a game called Tubs of Fun where contestants toss balls into a tub. When he practiced he says it was easy, but something changed when he started playing for the prize and the balls kept popping out.

Read more and see video from WBZ/Boston.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013 1:58 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

eightdotthree said:

THERE WAS NO MONEY TO WIN BACK!

JOz99 said:

How much did the game cost?

Even at an outrageous $10 per throw, that means he played it 260 times!

I can answer both of these with one single quote from the article:

"The 30-year-old from Epsom says he kept trying to win back his money by going double or nothing."

I don't get it either, but apparently they knew they had a sucker on the line and offered him double or nothing bets.

Last edited by Lord Gonchar, Wednesday, May 1, 2013 1:58 PM
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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 2:27 PM
Jeff's avatar

Whether the game is rigged or not is irrelevant. Spending $2,600 to win something you can buy for $300 is devoid of common sense. If you're willing to do that, I'm not so sure you deserver to keep that money.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Music: The Modern Gen-X - Video

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 2:28 PM
LostKause's avatar

Bozman said:

Seems to me that if your "Life Savings" is only $2600 there are bigger issues than not winning a carnival game.

I keep reading this reply on other websites pertaining to this story. I must have issues. Do people really have all kinds of money stuffed in a bank account these days?

I have always found rigged games to be fascinating. I like to figure out the secrets to why people have a hard time winning.

Last edited by LostKause, Wednesday, May 1, 2013 2:29 PM
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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 2:33 PM

According to this site, the average American family has $3800 with 25% of American families with no savings at all.

http://www.statisticbrain.com/american-family-financial-statistics/

By going public, this guy is setting himself up for a lifetime of "can't miss" offers.

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 4:06 PM
Carrie J.'s avatar

Here's the thing that pisses me off about this story. The guy clearly (probably among other things) has a gambling problem. I don't think that can be disputed. When you go double or nothing on a carnival game and after losing several times drive all the way home to get thousands of dollars to bring back to keep trying, that speaks to the addiction problem.

And instead of holding him accountable to that and making sure he is offered the help he needs, an article or two is written with an undertone to suggest the behavior is normal and that the problem is that the carnival game is rigged. Plus Vater's link to another site who is willing to give him back his money in return for likes on a Facebook page.

There is no reasonable response to that except "wtf?"...


"If passion drives you, let reason hold the reins." --- Benjamin Franklin

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 4:13 PM
Walk-Off HBP's avatar

I'm glad that this happened. I hope the carny does something useful with the money. Also, is that a kid (his?) I saw in that stroller he's pushing there? Splendid.


The trick was to surrender to the flow.

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 4:49 PM
Jeff's avatar

I can't believe people have so little saved, on average. I was guilty of that once upon a time, but my attitude changed after my first lay-off.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Music: The Modern Gen-X - Video

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 9:02 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

I can't even fathom living with that little saved. The very first thing I did fresh out of school was to build up a cushion of 6 months salary. I understand that that's not always possible but I personally would crap my pants every morning if I ever thought my mortgage would be in jeopardy if I got laid off.

On topic, I don't think it's the carny's fault that this guys spent $2600, even if the game is rigged. It's the carny's fault that the game is rigged (if that's even illegal or whatever), but it's the guy's fault that he couldn't say no. And the only way he'll seek help is if he bottoms out.

Last edited by ApolloAndy, Wednesday, May 1, 2013 9:04 PM

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 10:22 PM
Fun's avatar

This guy failed the test for continued patronage. Although you'll never hear a business admit it, there are some customers who need to be fired.

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 10:55 PM
kpjb's avatar

I dunno. I like the banana.


Hi

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Thursday, May 2, 2013 12:14 AM
bjames's avatar

I keep seeing this topic's headline on the front page and reading it as "man loses life in New Hampshire carnival game"....I can't say why....

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Thursday, May 2, 2013 4:48 PM

The question as to how he lost so much money, is mentioned above. He didn't play the game several hundred times, instead at some point, the carny offered to go double or nothing, meaning the carny was offering the guy money (in excess of the xbox) for a successful win.

Rule number one in life, if a Carny is ever offering to play a game where you win hard cash, the game is rigged.

Many of you who have only attended large State fairs, may have never come across carnival games where the prize shifts from plush to cash. However, it happens all the time at smaller, county fairs, usually on the last night. The carnival is gone the next morning, so there (used to be ) no way to track down the carny and the potentially rigged game.

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Thursday, May 2, 2013 4:55 PM

ApolloAndy said:

I don't think it's the carny's fault that this guys spent $2600, even if the game is rigged. It's the carny's fault that the game is rigged (if that's even illegal or whatever), but it's the guy's fault that he couldn't say no. And the only way he'll seek help is if he bottoms out.

I'm a little shocked at this quote. Forget that it's the guy's life savings. Do you still think it's ok that the guy was playing a game where he had zero chance of winning? Not a "small" chance of winning, but ZERO? The game is rigged, there is no chance the guy is going to win at all. The only question is how much he'd lose before he walked away.

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Thursday, May 2, 2013 5:42 PM
LostKause's avatar

Taking advantage of stupid people through deception is a pretty nasty way to make a living.


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Thursday, May 2, 2013 5:50 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

I totally get what Andy is saying.

It's not the carny's fault this guy is an idiot and couldn't figure out to walk away.

It is the carny's fault that the game was rigged.

There's a difference there. Most people would have walked away WAY before they dropped anything near $2600 - that's on the moron himself, not the carny. It doesn't make a rigged game ok, but that much damage comes from personal stupidity, not a rigged game.


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Thursday, May 2, 2013 7:57 PM
Jeff's avatar

I agree. I'd like to think that personal responsibility has a place here.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Music: The Modern Gen-X - Video

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Thursday, May 2, 2013 8:01 PM
rollergator's avatar

In the end, he's selling the banana and getting back his 2600 *plus* he gets an Xbox.

....and we wonder why people don't learn from their mistakes?

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Thursday, May 2, 2013 8:11 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

Yeah. Basically, my point is that the carny bears the same amount of fault for rigging the game, whether it was $10 or $10,000. It's the customer that bears the fault for making it $10,000 instead of $10.


Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Thursday, May 2, 2013 8:20 PM
bjames's avatar

LostKause said:

Taking advantage of stupid people through deception is a pretty nasty way to make a living.

Tell that to the politicians.

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Thursday, May 2, 2013 8:29 PM
LostKause's avatar

Heck, man. Tell that to at least half the businesses out there. Honesty and integrity are lost virtues in this modern world.


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