A wig-wearing mate of mine with a penchant for jabots just gave me a bat’n’ball on the dog and bone, and before I could get rid of the rude prick so I could concentrate on the Cranbourne form – fancy ringing on a Friday race night, is there no respect? – he ranted and raved and in between screaming told me one of the most ridiculous tales I’ve heard all year, or since I spoke to Elvis earlier this evening at least.

The yarn’s not ridiculous because he’s making it up, even if does sound somewhat far fetched. No Sportsfans, it’s ridiculous because it’s true. You see as well as being a bloke I know and trust, the fella who relayed his first hand experience with Sportsbet this evening to me is one of those jokers who Rumpole used to call  Queer Customers, and those silk robed fellas don’t lie, or most of them don’t anyway and he’s one.’

So the story is that this Rumpole of the Brisvegasaily is a mad Tory, and he’s got this crazy fantasy type thing going with LNP deputy leader Deb Frecklington, who he regards as the epitome of the ideal woman on an ordinary day, and a goddess on all the others. I don’t see it myself – she’s a tidy enough piece, but a little on the bland side for my liking – but that doesn’t matter.

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Deb’s the girl in the poster on the inside of office wall and that’s that, and if his love from afar is not reciprocated well I guess when you’re recently betrothed and you’ve never actually met the MP for Nanango, and don’t even know where the joint is, then you’d have to agree that it’s a bit hard to have a 2-way relationship going, although I’m pretty sure that Serena Williams has the hots for me even though we’re in the same boat, I can see it in her eye.

Reddit!

Puh-Lease!

That Ruski billionaire character’s only charmed her because she’s too bloody bust practicing her back-hand topspin lob to read my in-depth and amazingly analytical articles. But good things come to those who wait, and I’m pretty hand with little nippers once they get the past the annoying stage at about 18, so with Serena looking for all the world like she’s going to be winning Wimbledon’s until she’s sixty five I’m happy to sit on my Bundy Rum on the Tobacco Pouch and wait for her until she gives the game away.

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Anyway, back to the main story and sorry for the distraction – Serena just does that to me – and here’s Rumpole this afternoon sitting back the counting the $1000 cash he’d just just earned in 20 minutes charged in 3 minutes blocks at $3000 an hour spent telling a client that he was barking up the wrong tree trying to defend a parking ticket using the defense that there was no park where he put the Merc, only a whole lot of signs saying loading zone that he thought it was some sort of resting post for weary coppers walking around the CBD all day with a brick in their pockets and looking for someone to throw it at.

After the deflated Merc driver had left his chambers our QC mate had bit of time on his hands before the happy hour kicked off at 5, so he did what men with a hankering for Deb Frecklington and a penchant for the punt do and jumped on to Sportsbet to take a Captain Cook at the prices for the Nanango Electorate Stakes run tomorrow.

Well sportsfans when he saw his dream girl’s price he almost wet himself, not through sexual desire or incontinence, but because you could back the unbeatable Freckles at give-away odds of a buck thirty ($1.30), which is about 5 years worth of interest on a dollar.

Let me tell you something for free: if there’s one thing a dyed-in-the-wool Liberal voting lawyerly type likes better than a National Party sheila wearing deck shoes and a pink crocodile shirt it’s a sure-fire 30c return in the dollar, and before you could say Dorothy Pratt and Pauline he was on the dog and bone to some 21 year old junior trader at Australia’s largest corporate bookmaker Sportsbet trying to put 800 bucks on to win $240, which is hardly a fortune when you’re earning eight grand a week, and only wasn’t a thousand because he needed some loose change for shouts at the pub.

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The kid trader asks Rumpole if he’d mind being put on hold for a moment, and before he could reply the prospective punter was listening to Greensleeves on constant repeat. After an interminable delay – the mate says it was 10 minutes, which means it was probably three: it’s hard to break the habit of rapid counting that you pick up bloc charging – the kid trainer returns and says sorry sir, the price is now $1.20.

“WTF?” thinks the punter,who is staring straight at the online Sportsbet bookie board and can see “Deb Frecklington, LNP: $1.30” staring back at him, and so he asks the question, and the reply is anything but what he wants to hear for it simply along the lines of “Because”, and if you’ve ever been through an interrogation by a four year old child about why you can’t take them for a walk in the park while you’re waiting for the 3rd leg of the Quaddie to jump you’ll know exactly what I mean.

Rumpole hangs up the phone and starts stewing and spewing, but all the time he’s venting to the framed portraits of dead Queer Customers on the wall he’s staring at his girl Freckles now updated $1.20 price and before you can say Deb Should Be LNP Leader and Probably Will Be Within the Week he’s back on the dog and bone and telling the young trader that Sportsbet are bloody thieves but he’ll take the $1.20 anyway and trying the same $800 on, this time to win just a pissy $160 bucks which will buy him about 3 shouts once the happy hour’s over.

The Trader tries to put the bet on, and the computer must start going beep, beep, beep because he tells Rumpole ‘Sorry sir we can’t let you on for that much’ and after the suddenly blue air clears the horse trading begins.

“How about $600” Rumpole asks.

Tap, tap, tap.

Sorry sir, that’s too much.

$500 to win a hundred?

Nope.

Sorry sir still too big.

$400? $300? $200?

Sorry, sorry, sorry, but no, no, no.

$100?

Nope.

$50?

Perfect sir. You’re on to win $10.

And then they wind the price in to $1.15.

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Ten bloody dollars.

This company turns over $2 billion a year. You would have to be kidding wouldn’t you?

The trader wasn’t. Rumpole wasn’t either. And nor am I.

Ten bloody dollars.

After he collects on Freckles win Rumpole’s using it to buy the stamps for his complaint to the Northern Territory Racing Commission. He got the address off the young lady he lodged his verbal complaint to this arvo.

I wouldn’t take this bloke on a legal fight, not in 800 years, so this should be fun.

We’ll keep you updated.

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