Sometimes you're made to feel like the biggest mistake is playing correctly. At Foxwoods a few years ago I was playing two hands of blackjack (8 decks, S17, DAS, Surrender) at a $25 table, the two hands right before the dealer. Some hotshot young guy approached the table and sat down just to my right. I think he bought in for $300 or $400 and played a few hands. Then he had $200 left, and bet $100. The dealer's upcard was a 6; this guy's initial two cards totalled 8. He asked me if he should double down. I advised against it; he proceeded to double down anyway, betting the rest of his buyin. I don't recall what card he got, as it wasn't relevant. I played my first hand, which I also don't remember. My second hand was a soft 18 (again, the dealer was showing a 6): correct strategy is to double, which I did. I got an 8, making 16. The dealer revealed a 10 in the hole, and then a 4 when she hit, making 20.
What happened next was like a Phil Hellmuth outburst: the young hotshot guy immediately gets up from his seat, pointing out that I took the dealer's bust card, and starts shouting to everyone in the vicinity about how I was such an idiot because I doubled down on 18. He continued to verbally express his disbelief at my "stupidity" to anyone willing to listen for the next several minutes.
I learned a valuable lesson that day: don't play at a blackjack table unless the only other person there is the dealer!
That definitely beats the worst I've seen, but I was at a table where a guy kept doubling down on 12/13 against dealer 10s, but he would stay on things like 15, 16, and soft 17 against a dealer 10. We never could figure out what he was doing, just had to hope he would bust out and leave. Doubling on 15 is amazing, even more so with a big bet out. Love it
What happened next was like a Phil Hellmuth outburst:
Now the woman leaps out of her chair. Her voice even louder than before.
It seems as often as not that the idiots complaining about
someone's play are not even playing correct basic strategy
themselves on every hand. Go figger.
What I don't understand here is why the casino let her
continue to play even though she made a complete horse's
Not sure if this qualifies as a dumb play, but your comment reminded me of it. Was playing blackjack at a full table. The dealer has a 6 showing, and everybody has stand pat hands. But, a guy in the middle of the table who has a 12, wants a card.
I think it is how some people are taught blackjack. Sometimes people are told the one who gets closest to 21 wins the game. BTW you can't go over 21. He just thinks a 16 is closer to 21 than 12...
It should be possible to explain to people exactly where the advantage comes from...
It may not be worth the trouble.
I don't think "because the math says so" cuts the mustard for the average Joe or Jane.