Monday, July 23, 2007


Good Morning, everyone--hope you're all having a happy Monday.

I just got up a little while ago, made myself a fresh pot of hazelnut/coconut Nirvana, and I'm presently relaxing in front of the computer, thinking of all the things I *should* be doing instead. Yep, my room is a mess, I have about nine loads of laundry to do, I need to synchronize my calendar with all of my bills that are due in the next few weeks, and I should probably organize my closet.

But sitting in front of the computer drinking coffee is much more enjoyable, so there you go...

As far as work goes, it's been a very interesting week. First of all, starting tonight, my schedule changed (for the better), and I get to go in at 7:00 pm instead of 8:00. That's so much better for so many reasons-- 1) I'm likely to be on a good string of games (a couple of Pai Gow tables and that Ultimate Holdem Game) instead of a bunch of life-sucking low-limit blackjack tables, 2) It's much busier early on, so my time goes much faster, and 3) I will more than likely be able to skip out of work 40 minutes early almost every night, yet still get full tokes.

Of course, not all is sunshine and lollipops. One of the Pai Gow tables on the 7:00 pm string is a five-dolllar flea circus. It's a pretty long hour, because there are about three or four of the same losers that come in every night and wait for seats at the table. Of course they never tip, and they're usually the first ones to bitch and moan about their comps. Or lack of them. As much as I root against the House, sometimes it's a sublime pleasure to bust some people. And even though it takes forever at a five-dollar Pai Gow table, when it happens, it's just a thing of beauty.

Anyhow, I'm really looking forward to my new schedule--it's put a spring in my step already. Additionally, now that we got the word that the most hated and psychopathic dealer ever to pitch cards in Vegas was *officially* shitcanned, and we've gotten rid of that horrid Rapid Roulette game, our tokes seem to have gone up significantly on the weekends. We've had a couple of pretty good days. The past several weekdays have been less-than-stellar (it's been slow), but our weekend was pretty good.

I've also gotten a few 'pats on the head' these past few days. One of the bosses, who I find *very* hard to read--straight up told me the other day, out of the clear blue, that "You really shouldn't even be working here".

I was like WTF? Excuse me?

"Yeah, you should be down on the Strip at a nice place making more money--you're too good to be working here..."

Oh, ok... Heh. That's better.

The problem with working on the Strip is that MGM/Mirage doesn't seem to be the least bit interested in me (they keep your information on file, and applying for a position, once your first application is done, is just a matter of clicking a button on their employment website). I've applied for a half-dozen different positions over the course of the past year-and-a-half and haven't even gotten a single acknowledgment or audition.

Otherwise, the only alternative is working for the Evil Empire, and I don't know if I'm ready to make that leap quite yet. Of course, there's always Le Steve or Uncle Sheldon, but since about 4000 dealers around town have applied for a position at the Venetian/Palazzo in the past month, and getting into the Wynn is tougher than getting a job as the towel boy at the Playboy mansion, those aren't really an option. Besides, there are only about five or six places on the Strip where the dealers consistently make more than I already do. So my options seem to be fairly limited, anyways.

But I know I'm pretty good at what I do. I had two different floorpeople tell me last week that they love having me work in their sections because they know that they don't have to babysit my table. Hell, two nights ago, one of the bosses came and got me off of my table to help them answer a dispute on another game (but they're still not gonna get me to wear a jacket--I've been successfully dodging that responsibility for over a year, and my record still stands!)

I even got a backhanded compliment from a pissed-off player on Friday night. I was dealing that Bonus Holdem game, which has a *huge* house edge--I wouldn't be caught dead on the other side of that table. But it was late, and it was a dead game, and this doofus came up with another hundred dollar bill (I'd already taken about three others off of him earlier) and said he wanted to give it one more try.

So I shuffled up, and he actually won a couple of hands right away, and I dropped a few bucks in the toke box. We were laughing it up and having a good time, and then the wheels fell off. He'd made a full house by having a pocket queen while the board was showing three kings, a queen, and a four. So he had about $30 worth of bets out on the table, thinking his full house was good. But guess who had the case King?

Yep, he got the boat, but I had the four-of-a-kind and wiped him out.

He got so pissed, slammed the table, then pointed his finger at me and said "If you do that again, I'm coming across this table!"

Oh man, I absolutely live for the day that happens, because then I would have permission to beat the ever-livin' shiat out of somebody that clearly has it coming.

I calmly replied, Oh, please do! That would make my whole night!

I could hear the floorperson behind me start to snicker, and the guy said "I'm not afraid of you, man!"

So I told him that he didnt' have a reason to be, as I wasn't the one making threats.

He lost a few more hands with bad cards, and then I crushed him. I dealt him pocket jacks and he loaded up his bets again. The board was pretty raggy, except that there were two sixes out there as community cards.

I turned over my hole cards to show a 6-3 offsuit, and I thought the guy was gonna come unglued. Yep, my three-of-a-kind smacked down his big pocket pair, busting him again.

He flipped out, wisely deciding against coming across the table though, and said Dude, I know what you're doing. You're totally setting the deck! I know it! I've been here in Vegas since 1974, so I know what's up...

With that he got up and left, and as soon as he did, both me and the floorperson looked at each other and busted out laughing.


First of all, if I could set the deck with any degree of accuracy, that jagoff wouldn't be able to get a seat at my table, as it would always be full of my buddies and hot chicks with questionable morals.

Second of all, it didn't do me one bit of good to bust the guy--when he was winning, he was tipping, so I was actually rooting for the guy. But as soon as he took a bad beat, he turned into a complete farking mope, so I knew I'd gotten my last toke out of the guy. Crushing him was just a nice bonus.

Third of all, busting him out and sitting on a dead game is kind of counter-productive, as it makes the night just drag.

And finally, even if I could control the cards, why in the hell would I risk a decent job with good insurance and benefits to bust a complete toolbox that was doing a fine job of going broke on his own?

I guess his tinfoil hat was on too tight. But I took it as a compliment that he thought I was that smooth of a dealer that I could manipulate the deck so well. If only it were so--because if it were, I'd spend my days like Mike McD and Worm, cold-decking Teen Beat cover boys, and I wouldn't have to worry about going to work every day.

So what else is new?

Let's see here... I got to deal dice twice in the last week, and it was actually a lot of fun. Normally, I don't much care for our 'regular' dice players, but the tables I was on were full of tourists, so it was much more enjoyable than dealing to our regular strokers. I'm glad I got over there, because I don't deal dice nearly often enough, and not that I was that much of an all-star craps dealer, but my game was getting a bit rusty. So I got to knock the edge off and deal a couple of fun games this weekend.

Saturday night after work, there was huge goodbye party for one of the boxmen who was giving up the casino biz to move out to Hawaii with a buddy of his and be a bartender. The Early-Out list was about two pages long, but since my dice game went dead, I was one of the lucky ones and slid out ahead of most of the blackjack crew. Our shift goes until 4:00 am, but I swear by 3:00 the entire shift was at the bar getting silly on beer and shots. Even the floorpeople were there--everyone thought they must've closed the place down because almost every dealer was at the bar. We had no idea who was left in the casino pitching cards until the graveyard shift showed up, but by then nobody cared. It was a good time.

I wanted to take some pictures, but my dumb drunk ass was defeated by the new digital camera that said that my memory card was write-protected and it wouldn't let me take any photos (and let me tell you, there were some *great* opportunities). Of course, then next day I figured out that there is a little locking switch on the side of the memory card that somehow I managed to activate. Oh well, it's probably better that some of the buffoonery on display wasn't permanently recorded, and relegated to "legend" status instead.

My hottie friend Lisa Lisa The One I Adore (the one who's a cocktail waitress at Luxor) was also there, and she insisted on doing several shots together, so I was good and buzzed on Surfers on Acid. Whew... a few of those will make you good and silly. Couple them with a few pints of Captain and Coke, and you have a recipe for a happy disaster. Somebody had the foresight to order wings, nachos, and chicken strips for the crowd, so there was a bit of food on hand to dilute the booze. Around the time the sun came up, I switched to bottled water for a couple of hours before heading home, scrubbing off the lipstick, and sleeping it off.

Of course, everyone was completely fried at work last night--the entire shift seemed to be hungover and moving at half-speed, complaining that they just can't rage like they used to. Luckily it was kind of slow and easy--I dealt a grand total of four hands in the first two hours of my shift. The rest of the time I sat there at dead tables, my eyes glazed over and staring at all the pretty flashing lights in the distance.

Dinner consisted of mashed potatoes and iced tea.

It was just another Sunday in America's Playground.


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