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Best of Frank Scoblete

Gaming Guru

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The horror of card counting

21 July 2015

FROM FRED: I read your short article on blackjack today. I wanted to ask you if you are taking into consideration the multi-decks that casinos use today.

I was not sure when you wrote this article, so if everybody at the table has pat 19s, 20s and blackjacks this round, the next few rounds are not likely to be very good for the players. Bet small or not at all, but with so many decks being used, how can we be so sure?

It is amazing how often the dealer gets a 10 when he needs a 10, or how often I see dealers get a five- or six-card 20 and 21.

FRANK RESPONDS: If you are counting cards, you will know whether the remaining cards in the show favor the players or favors the casinos. You can’t just tell from round to round if the house has the edge or if the player has the edge. Only accurate counting cards can tell you that.

As for seeing those awful hands that dealers sometimes get, that is selective memory. But here is an example excerpted from my book “I Am a Card Counter: Inside the World of Advantage-Play Blackjack.” This took place on my second trip to Atlantic City after a great first trip.

“I was truly a strutting cock of the Boardwalk after that first visit and then we went back to Atlantic City a few weeks later and I was the cock that got squashed by a car while trying to cross the road. I had put aside five thousand dollars as a bankroll, and during that first trip we doubled it. This second trip saw me lose every penny of that money – every penny of our win and every penny of my initial bankroll.

“My final destruction occurred at the Claridge in the high roller room when I had a bet of $2,500 on the table on various hands that I had split, resplit and doubled on. I was so convinced that my bad luck had to (had to!) change that I was betting way too much for my almost non-existent bankroll.

“Succinctly, I was a complete idiot, trying to recover all my money in just a few hands. I was on tilt; I wasn’t thinking straight – hell, I wasn’t thinking at all. I was the very ‘ploppy’ player I have made fun of over the years.

“At this moment of the ‘Frank Scoblete is the Titanic about to hit the iceberg,’ the count was sky high; my hands went from 18 to 20. The dealer was showing a six. He had to have a 10 in the hole because so many small cards had already been played and I was sure he would bust with his piddling 16 and I would come roaring back and recapture my original 5K stake.

“From there on, casino ownership had only been delayed by a small losing streak. Move over Steve Wynn and Donald Trump, the new boy, Frank Scoblete, card counter, was in town.

“The dealer flipped over his hole card. Oh, yeah, a 10! He had 16, just as I thought.

“My heart was racing with joy; it was racing with excitement. Then something hit me; a small thought in the back of my mind that now came roaring to the front of my mind, I haven’t seen many fives during this shoe. I started to sweat. I started to really, really sweat and everything went in slow motion from this point – at least that is how my memory sees it.

“Slow motion: He pulls out a card from the shoe and slowly flips it over. Slow motion as the card flips: A five! Slow motion first on my forehead, then on my nose, then on the layout: A bead of sweat goes down my nose and drops onto the table. A five, oh, my God, a f**king five!

“I was busted. I had lost every penny I had reserved to play blackjack and start my casino-playing career in order to get myself out of debt. On one flip of the cards I had lost $2,500. In one trip, I had lost $10,000. My gambling stake was gone. My confidence was gone. The casino I was going to buy was gone. I was, at that moment, the ultimate loser.

“On the way back to Long Island, the Beautiful A.P. and I stopped at the Captain’s house. [The late, great Captain of Craps was my gambling mentor.] As soon as he saw us, he smiled and said, ‘There they are with empty pockets.’”

Yes, blackjack can be a heartbreaking game even if you have the edge.

For your letter I am sending you a copy of my book “The Virgin Kiss.”

Frank Scoblete’s new book is “I Am a Dice Controller: Inside the World of Advantage-Play Craps.” Available from Amazon.com, on Kindle and at bookstores.
Recent Articles
Best of Frank Scoblete
Frank Scoblete

Frank Scoblete is the #1 best selling gaming author in America. His newest books are Slots Conquest: How to Beat the Slot Machines; Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold'em, Omaha Hi-Lo and Pai Gow Poker!; Beat Blackjack Now: The Easiest Way to Get the Edge; Casino Craps: Shoot to Win!; Cutting Edge Craps: Advanced Strategies for Serious Players; Casino Conquest: Beat the Casinos at Their Own Games! and The Virgin Kiss.

Frank and Casino City Times columnist Jerry "Stickman" teach private lessons in dice control. Frank's books are available at Amazon.com, in bookstores or by mail order. Call 1-800-944-0406 or write to Frank Scoblete Enterprises, PO Box 446, Malverne, NY 11565. Frank can also be reached by email at fscobe@optonline.net.

Frank Scoblete Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com

Books by Frank Scoblete:

Casino Craps: Shoot to Win!

> More Books By Frank Scoblete

Frank Scoblete
Frank Scoblete is the #1 best selling gaming author in America. His newest books are Slots Conquest: How to Beat the Slot Machines; Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold'em, Omaha Hi-Lo and Pai Gow Poker!; Beat Blackjack Now: The Easiest Way to Get the Edge; Casino Craps: Shoot to Win!; Cutting Edge Craps: Advanced Strategies for Serious Players; Casino Conquest: Beat the Casinos at Their Own Games! and The Virgin Kiss.

Frank and Casino City Times columnist Jerry "Stickman" teach private lessons in dice control. Frank's books are available at Amazon.com, in bookstores or by mail order. Call 1-800-944-0406 or write to Frank Scoblete Enterprises, PO Box 446, Malverne, NY 11565. Frank can also be reached by email at fscobe@optonline.net.

Frank Scoblete Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com

Books by Frank Scoblete:

> More Books By Frank Scoblete