Online betting allows the great Nigerian public to reach out and have a flutter on whatever takes their fancy, whenever they want to scratch their virtual gambling itch. Combine this with an unrelenting fervour for celebrity comings and goings and what do you have? Awards Betting, that's what. A time and place when we can place online bets on the first name that's set to be read out once a golden envelope is opened on a star-studded night in the capital. That'll be London to the rest of you, and the glamorous location where TV, film, music, art and literary worlds gather to celebrate their own throughout the year. And something on the televised back of which us mere mortals can make a few bob by guessing who'll grab the winners gongs. Ooh err missus and all that.
Awards nights. What seems like a weekly excuse for our fave celebs to don their glad rags (roughly translated – as little as fabric-ally possible if you're of the female contingent), pose their ways across a red carpet rolled outside a supposedly trendy venue (usually in London's West End) or a respected theatre in a manner that would make Paris Hilton cringe, take advantage of the liquid hospitality and steadfastly ensure they get their (cheap) mug shots (and thighs and knickers) slapped across the following morning's red-tops so as to perpetuate the folly that they've got something useful to say/do/think. OK. That's just the British Soap Awards described in a paragraph, but what about the others. And boy, are there plenty of others from which to choose. Which of course is great news if you're one of the legions of online gamblers who like to dabble in the dark arts. Or Awards Betting as it's more commonly known.
Entertainment Betting on Nigerian Soap and National TV Awards
It's funny, aside from the Nigerian Soap Awards and the National TV Awards we encounter the other side of the spectrum with as much disconcerting ease. The lovey-fest that's equally as irksome as the would-be trolly dolly's opportunity to flash a bit more flesh than they're normally contractually obliged to do provides the 'cream' of English acting/musical talent to gatecrash the Guinness Book of World Records for wall-to-wall air kissing within the same 500 yard space. Yes, the BAFTAs. Don't get us wrong, we love as much Dame Judi Dench as anyone else, but Rupert Everett et al? Seriously, is there any need? But the self congratulatory back-slapping doesn't stop there as we all know that whatever us Brits can do our American cousins can do thrice as nice. Or in the awards sense, thrice as nauseatingly. Cue the Oscars and the preceding Golden Globe Awards stateside that annually serve up more tear stained stages than an evening of Nigeria's Got (lamentable) Talent auditions. Watch out if you're sitting in the front row and Gwyneth Paltrow takes to the stage that's all we can say, as awards betting fans can testify.
Uncontrollable blubbing and thanking a list of people no-one has ever heard of, along with their parents who thankfully birthed them, God, Ronald McDonald and Old Tom Cobley are prime fodder to see us through an audience with and would be a guaranteed turn off for the majority of us if online awards betting hadn't been invented to stave off the misery and at least give us some hope amid the hair and nail-pulling despair.
But what of the 'other' others?
Mercury Music, NME and Brit Awards Keep The Music Betting Fans Entertained
Well, it's literally (and lyrically) from the sublime to the ridiculous to the cor blimey missus! Apart from the world of the small and silver screen we have such award chestnuts as the Mercury Music Prize and the NME Awards for not so quiet starters. In fact, downright raucous and decadent in the case of the latter as the 'in' bands battle it out to be crowned the best at making a riotous noise in a live and pre-recorded capacity whether in studios, entertainment venues or the obligatory field. That's whilst the Mercury Music Awards celebrate the most po-faced of the current melodic and harmonious talent pool the middle classes are privy to, allowing Guardian readers to tap on their QWERTY with their fingers to cast their votes as opposed to tapping their Free Trade-manufactured moccasin-clad toes to the pre-requisite tuneage of the day.
For those of you who are either A. Not holed up in an eternal sixth form common room or B. Consider releasing an artsy CD once every blue moon, then there's always February's Brit Awards. Which in itself is always good for guessing who's going to irreversible damage their career by making an absolute tool of themselves by imbibing themselves to within an inch of their talent. Historically a graveyard for its TV presenters (Mick Fleetwood/Sam Fox anyone? Or more recently Matthew Horne/ James Corden??), the Brits has its fair share of embarrassing moments for invited guests and performing acts alike. Who can forget the evening when MP John Prescott received a pale-full of water over his ample girth courtesy of the band d Chumbawumba as a protest as something or other? Quality TV. And while on the subject of being offended, the juncture at which Pulp front-mann Jarvis Cocker took it upon himself to join the late Michael Jackson on stage and moon along to his Earth Song performance on the grounds of something or other else. And former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell emerging from between an oversized pair of her own legs when we all know she disappeared anatomically somewhere close by a long, long time ago now. Indeed, something for everyone.
Man Booker, Turner and Nobel Peace Prize Attract A More Culturally Diverse Online Betting Audience
Then the whole awards betting scenario falls headlong into the cultural chasm that many of us would need to tie a barn door to our backsides to ensure we don't get sucked in completely. So naturally we're talking the Man Booker and Turner Prize first and foremost here. The Man Booker Prize for Fiction is dished out to the author of the best, original full-length novel written in our native tongue year on year. So who'd have thought that it would be caught up for purportedly inciting racial hatred or inflaming political tensions as was the case when Salman Rushdie (of The Satanic Verses fame) was handed the distinguished award that sought to highlight his enduring literary achievements in 1993, merely four years after a death sentence was placed on his head and he went into hiding.
The Turner Prize as a different beast entirely and is doled out to the contemporary artist who is believed to be the most deserving in light of their contribution to the conceptual art world over the preceding 12 months. Again never far away from courting controversy as a result of picking a winner, past luminaries forever associated with the November-held awards ceremony have included Damian Hirst (for pickling various recently deceased animals) and Tracy Emin (for her efforts in the bedroom).
The Nobel Peace Prize on the other hand is exactly what it says it is. A gong awarded to the man or woman (or collection of men and women) who are deemed to have done the most to further our understanding of life and its medical/scientific/diplomatic complexities, or have gone and invented something to contribute to this. Or perhaps have brought about an end to a war or conflict by getting the fractions to the debating table and discussing their 'issues' like adults. Worryingly this can or cannot include Bono somewhere on the guest list.
To finish on an altogether lighter note, you may want to wager on the outcome of the genial British Comedy Awards, or specifically how many times near-the-knuckle occasional host, Jonathan Ross will offend a certain sector of society. Worth a ganders simply to rejoice at what we do best – make people laugh.