The coronavirus has disrupted one of the most sacred days on the Australian calendar: Anzac Day.
Many would normally be preparing to wake up extra-early to attend a Dawn Service before tucking into a hearty breakfast. Loads would fill the streets to watch the annual Anzac Day parade to recognise the people who put their lives on the line for us. Then RSLs and pubs would be packed to the brim to play Two-Up.
The game is only legal on April 25 and is a pretty iconic part of our culture.
But, the outbreak of Covid-19 has caused all that to be put on hold until next year.
People can still pause to reflect on the sacrifice of those who committed themselves to wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations.
And it seems like you can still play Two-Up.
I know what you’re thinking: “How the hell are you supposed to play Two-Up when you can’t leave your home?”
Well, some genius has created a virtual Ring for everyone to play the game they hold dear to them on a sacred day.
Not much is known about how it will work, however creator Ben McCarthy says you won’t be able to bet actual money on it when it launches in the morning.
For that to happen, Ben probably would have had to go through a bunch of legal hoops and sign loads of paperwork to get his mini-gambling empire launched.
But, it seems like it will be an easy setup: you can get the two coins to flip in the virtual air and have a result within seconds. Whether you want to play with your housemates or have a socially distanced version set up in your apartment block to get everyone in the mood is up to you.
At least you’ll have an option tomorrow if you’re keen to get in the spirit of Anzac Day.
There are a few online casinos that will be running Two-Up as well, where you can bet real money.
According to the ABC, the game of Two-Up goes back well before World War One, with history experts saying there are examples of it being played in the mid-1800s.
But when our diggers were shipped off to war, the game became a popular way to pass the time and keep morale up, even if you lost.
Michael Annett, secretary of the Victorian Branch of the RSL, told Triple J’s : “Diggers wanted to have a game, wanted to have a bet.
“I think the origins of two-up is that it didn’t require a lot of equipment, you needed to two coins, someone to toss and someone to call the outcome and inevitably it became an easily accessible game.”
So, if you’re wanting to yell ‘HEAD ‘EM UP’ at the top of your lungs tomorrow, you’ll now have an opportunity to do that.