When teenage poker wonder kid José “Girah” Macedo was revealed as a cheat back in 2011 few would have expected cleaning to be in his future, but Macedo has made good from just that.The cleaning service he started at the University of Lancaster in the UK has, so far, been a considerable success.

The service not only keeps the campus clean but also gives students the opportunity to make much valued cash by taking an, off study time, cleaning job. Macedo, who together with two other students from his home country manages the enterprise, has seen seven employees clean in excess of 1000 bathrooms and bedrooms already; students need all the help they can get with cleaning. This work has already resulted in a financial turnaround approaching €240,000.

Moving on From Poker Disgrace

Macedo was the quintessential prodigy of the poker world back when he could do no wrong. He had already amassed something of a fortune before he turned eighteen.

It all came crashing down around him when he cheated his then friends out of cash. He had been participating in an online “sweating” strategy session and persuaded some of those participating to play another player who he suggested was “a fish”. The players went on to lose to the new face and became suspicious. They noticed that Macedo was logging in and out of Skype as the new guy was logging in and out of the poker room.

All the evidence was circumstantial but Macedo later confessed to cheating. He said that he did not know why he had cheated but it may have been partly due to guilt at introducing his friend, who was the new face, to online poker only for him to fail.

Coming Back From Disaster

Macedo suffered a massive fall from grace in 2011 but he did not sit and lick his wounds. When he made the original confession he spoke of talking the situation through with his mother and he mentioned a sign he used to see at his school;

The real mistake is not tripping up, but staying down”.

This is what made him decide to own up to what he had done and not remain in the lie. But it could also be taken to refer to taking a chance to come back from disaster. Macedo has certainly done that. At Lancaster University he, and his partners, are providing a service which is in high demand.

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