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Tips from Gambling Greats: Jean Scott, the Queen of the Comps!24 October 2003
Jean Scott, one of the most popular gaming writers and personalities in the history of American gambling, is a study in delightful contradictions. Her father was a preacher, a traditionalist, who raised his family to adhere to an austere philosophy where frivolousness was frowned upon and frugality was the key. Jean often wondered what else there was to life, besides the straight and narrow, but being the "good girl" of the 1950s, she swam with the tide – and that tide meant family and a traditional "woman's" career, in her case, she taught high school English until her retirement in 1983.
But there was always that sense of "something else" around the corner, and that something else also came in 1983 when she visited Las Vegas for the very first time. This city of glitz and garishness, a far cry from her plain origins, and its games, captivated her and fired her imagination. Like many great gamblers before her, Jean Scott posed herself the question: "Is it possible to win against a city that tries to have the best of it on every bet? I always had a love of games and a competitive spirit, all the way back as a child. The casinos brought that back to me. I was fascinated by the games and I studied all the available literature first on blackjack, then on video poker. I practiced intensely."
Jean and her husband became accomplished card counters at blackjack, but it wasn't until she discovered video poker that she became the casino killer she is to this day. While Vegas brought out her long-suppressed competitive instincts, it also brought something else out in her: "My life-long propensity for frugality was fully stimulated by all the bargains, coupons, and promotions of this gambling town." In many ways, her father, the preacher, unbeknownst to him, had prepared her to become the world's greatest casino comp shopper.
By trial and error and with an eagle eye for deals, Jean figured out how to use the rating and slot club systems so well that she began getting all of her meals and hotel rooms comped by the casinos, without being a high roller, and without having to lose at the machines and tables. One year she and her husband Brad stayed 191 days in casino-hotels without paying a single room charge or food bill!
Finally, after 15 years of on-the-job-in-casino experience, in 1998, she combined her love for teaching and writing by penning The Frugal Gambler, a landmark book in gaming history and one of the biggest gaming best sellers of all time. This practical, non-technical book has been the leading casino guide for thrifty low rollers for half a decade now, and in it she stresses sensible and responsible gambling and shows you how to stretch your fun time no matter how small your gambling bankroll might be. In fact, The Frugal Gambler catapulted to #2 on Amazon.com's bestseller list after Jean and Brad's story was told on a recent episode of Dateline NBC. (Even Jean's magic couldn't knock off Harry Potter!)
Interestingly enough, Jean's passion is still education and while she continues as an active player in casinos all over the country, she has become one of the premier speakers and writers on gaming subjects. Jean Scott's exploits have been featured in newspaper and magazines articles and on the radio, in the United States and overseas as well. She has frequently appeared on TV: on local news shows, on the Learning and Discovery Channels, and even in travel features on British television. She and Brad are regulars on Travel Channel shows about Vegas and gambling. Besides Dateline, she was seen nationally on Hard Copy, Extra, and To Tell the Truth. Dan Rather dubbed her the "Queen of Comps" when she won a drawing for a Mercury Mystique on 48 Hours.
Her long-anticipated second book, More Frugal Gambling, is coming out in the Fall of 2003, just in time for her visit to Tunica as part of Frank Scoblete's Gamblers' Jamboree at Gold Strike Caisno on November 14, 15, and 16. Sponsored by TunicaCasinoResorts.com, the Gamblers Jamboree will feature 20 of the best gaming experts in the world, including Jean Scott, and will have over 30 seminars on all aspects of gaming.
Jean Scott has practical advice for gamblers. Here are some of her observations and tips:
"I want people to be sensible gamblers; to use common sense when gambling. In the stock market you look for books to read that explain the basics. You keep up with changing conditions by reading the newspaper and magazines. You look for experts who have been successful themselves and read to learn their winning techniques. You should do this with gambling.
"Before going to the grocery store, you scan the ad circulars you get in your mailbox and see which store has the things you need on sale before you decide where you will shop that week. You clip coupons to take with you in order to make your food budget go further. You should do this with gambling. Go where they give you the bargains.
"For your day-to-day needs you shop at a no-frills discount store, because you aren't interested in the ambience - you just want to get the best value at a reasonable price. When you want the fun of shopping in a big mall with upscale stores - and prices to match - you mostly window-shop and only buy something if you find it on sale. If you are tempted to overspend your budget when you go shopping, you leave your checkbook and credit and ATM cards at home and take only the cash you can afford to spend that day. You should do this with gambling, too.
"Now, look how sensible you are! Don't throw all that sense away when you enter the doors of a casino. Look for the best games to play, the best machines, the best strategies for those games and machines. Do your homework because if you do, it will save you plenty of money!
"In my seminars at Frank Scoblete's Gamblers' Jamboree, I'll share with you all my tricks for getting the casino treats without all the risk other players have to confront. Tunica is a great market for frugal gambling!"
Jean will be giving the keynote address at the Friday evening welcoming party on November 14. She will also be teaching six seminars during the course of the weekend and, yes, she will be playing in the casinos, too! (Learn more about Jean Scott, visit her website www.frugalgambler.biz.)
Frank Scoblete's Gamblers' Jamboree, sponsored by TunicaCasinoResorts.com, is $199 for one person, and $299 for two people. It will be held at Gold Strike Casino Resort in Tunica. If you wish to stay at Gold Strike, special Jamboree rates will be in effect once you are registered. Register by calling 1-866-SET-DICE or 1-800-944-0406 or send checks or money orders to Frank Scoblete, Box 783, Lynbrook, NY 11563.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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