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Nobody Asked Me But...25 November 2000
Nobody asked me but...why do casino gamblers smoke so much? And why does the smoke always drift in my direction, no matter where I am in the casino? Is there an air current with my name on it? And why is that the guy with the foul-smelling cigar always heads for my table and the empty seat next to me when there are hundreds of empty seats at all those other tables? How come everyone with bad teeth and bad breath wants to talk into my nose when I'm playing?
Why is it that whenever I give a talk about casino gambling, there is always one individual who states the obvious: "I'll bet you make more money writing about gambling than you do gambling?" Why is it that this individual states it in a tone that suggests I have been hiding a deep, dirty secret when everyone on the planet knows it is easier to make money writing about gambling than it is to make a living gambling. Why is it that he thinks only he knows that there are many, many more gambling writers than professional gamblers? Why is it that this guy irritates me so?
And why is it that so many pictures of winners of giant progressive jackpots always have captions that state that the winners just put in a few coins or were only playing for a few minutes and won millions? Is that to make the rest of us feel bad that we can't win anything in the hours and hours we were playing? Or are the people just fibbing so their spouses don't know how much they really put in those machines before they hit the big one?
Why is it that every young male blackjack player thinks that by being loud and boisterous Lady Luck will find him attractive? Why do they always wear those baseball caps? Why are the baseball caps always backwards and why are they always so dirty? And how did these loudmouths ever get such pretty and sedate girlfriends?
And why do players blame the dealers when they lose? Why don't players realize that the dealers just deal the cards, they don't put them in any particular order? Why are craps players predominantly male and slot players predominantly female? Why does every blackjack table have an expert willing to dispense free advice to all the other players who didn't ask for it? Why are poker players so cool-looking and sure of themselves? Why do some people have such style when they roll the dice and others roll them as if they wanted to lose quickly and get it over with?
Why is it that on every trip to Las Vegas I have seen a man with one arm playing the one-armed bandits? Why is it that this usually takes place right at the airport?
Why do casinos worry about card counters at blackjack when their hold percentage for that game is usually the same or greater than it is for craps? Why won't the casinos post the exact returns of each machine right on the machine? Why are people who are opposed to gambling opposed to you and me being able to gamble?
Why is it that many people think blackjack is such a good game even though they haven't learned the proper strategy for it and almost never win at it? Why do people play the Big Wheel? Why do people press their bets before they have actually locked up a win? Why are there so many gaming authors yet so few people who have taken the time to read even one of the hundreds of good books available?
Why is it that some casinos invite me to speak to their players and other casinos are paranoid if I'm even on their property? Why is it that the major newspapers and magazines in this country don't write about casino games but they all write about movies -- even though the casino industry generates much more money for the economy than does Hollywood? Why do mainstream newspapers write helpful articles about such gambles as the stock market and horse racing and sports (giving lines and all) but refuse to allow helpful articles about the best methods for playing the actual games in the casinos? Why are some casino executives terrified of letting on that their industry exists to get our money when we all know that every industry exists to get our money?
Why don't the instructors for the casino games at the casinos explain not only how the game is played but tell the actual house edges of the bets? Why is it that I love the world of the casinos, the ups and downs, the sights, sounds and smells?
Frankly speaking, nobody asked me but...I think casino gambling is just one helluva pastime!
This article is provided by the Frank Scoblete Network. Melissa A. Kaplan is the network's managing editor. If you would like to use this article on your website, please contact Casino City Press, the exclusive web syndication outlet for the Frank Scoblete Network. To contact Frank, please e-mail him at email@example.com.
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