Adventurers and Travellers - The Crossroaders

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Pablo Edronkin

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The term 'crossroader' belongs to the gaming jargon of the United States and means 'cheater', plain and simple; however, it is applied not just to dishonest gamblers but to any sort of cheater in any sort of game. The word comes from the saloons and gambling parlours of the wild, wild west.

It is indeed, a word inextricably related to the world of betting and gambling ad could only have evolved in a country in rapid expansion such as the United States during the nineteenth century. There and then, new towns popped into existence everywhere, as white settlers began conquering uncharted lands as well as those that belong to the natives.

And as soon as those new towns got their names, new services emerged such as prostitution, saloons where to drink, kill and die, and different gambling and betting venues. These activities were tolerated by the authorities for the most part simply because the rugged explorers and settlers needed ways to entertain themselves, and they wouldn't choose to read books or become academic, so it was in fact impossible to control such sprouts of entrepreneurship.

As time elapsed, the owners of such establishments became naturally wealthy and they suddenly became the ones able to afford the best chunks of real estate in the budding towns, meaning that the saloons and parlours often were moved to the best spots such as crossroads where lots of people and potential customers used to pass by.

The sudden prosperity visible at such crossroads and main streets soon also appealed to all sort of cheaters, tricksters and scamsters that like little sharks knowing where humans toss their litter to the sea, adapted to a crossroad-centred way of life, and hence the term "crossroader" was born, by observing those tricksters in action.

Today gambling, gaming and betting has been regulated for the most part and it is found at all sort of casinos and bingos around the world; these are managed by corporations with little interest in being dishonest since they can get lots of money in a legal way, and thus the crossroader has become somewhat something of the past, but it was an uncelebrated but typical character of an era of adventure here and when anyone could lose everything in any evening with too much boredom a little excess of alcohol, perhaps.

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