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DoubleA9
DoubleA9
Joined: Jan 14, 2015
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January 14th, 2015 at 8:35:45 PM permalink
Hello all!

This is my first post here on WOV; but, I'm no newbie. I first came across WOV back in late 2006 or early 2007. At that time, I was briefly looking into BS after seeing the MIT documentary on the History Channel. I was Infatuated with learning to play blackjack as an AP. I thought "this is exactly how I want to live my life". I had a lot to learn, and it took years to learn it, on my own - threw other members kind and helpful postings of course.

Fast forward 8-9 years and I find myself crushed after a 110k loss over 4 days... (550 unit loss - not unheard of, not out of the ordinary, but OWW!!) Very disheartening when my RoR = >1%... The hardest part about being an AP, is being on your own with no investors and no team mates, meaning on a good day, you reap the rewards, but over a few days like I just had, you suffer the consequences. I'm in this game for the long haul, and I measure my results with EV vs. $$$ extracted, but I must admit, scaling back due to negative variance is a pain in the @ss. I understand that I was willing to take the risk to grow, but damn, damn, damn.... I sure feel like It's tough to find people that can relate to this on a larger scale. (P.S. of course I've witnessed such terrible losing streaks on low limit tables. I.E. $5-$100).

I'm not looking for sorrow from others, but I'm curious if anyone else can relate to this, and share some hope or perspective.

P.S. I grew fast in a financial sense... starting at $3,000 and turning it into over $245,000.00 in just 15 months; I also realize that any lucky gambler can achieve this but I am not just any gambler. I use a set spread, indices, and proper BS. Depending on the table and rules, I also keep my RoR = >1%.


Guys, aside from my Negative Variance, I'm so happy to finally make my first post after all of these years - you don't even know!

(I even welcome the whitty responses, HA!)
DRich
DRich
Joined: Jul 6, 2012
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January 14th, 2015 at 9:02:56 PM permalink
I am both impressed with your incredible win and your clairvoyance. You found WOV three years before it existed.
Order from chaos
DoubleA9
DoubleA9
Joined: Jan 14, 2015
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January 14th, 2015 at 9:14:48 PM permalink
I realize now that it may have been WOO - (Wizard of Odds). I do recall seeing the oddly colored BS chart at wizard of "something". It has definitely been an adventure over the last 15 months.

When I started to count cards, I always had something wrong. I either didn't know how to implement a bet spread, didn't have perfct BS, didn't have the BR, or a combination of what was previously listed. I did however finally learn how to do it. My story doesn't always involve a RoR >1% but I learned what was important, and learned that the science behind playing blackjack professionally is counting cards, the art is getting away with it. I won't give my age away, but if my heart serves it's purpose, I'm willing to go to jail on trespassing charges several times over ;-)
kewlj
kewlj
Joined: Apr 17, 2012
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January 14th, 2015 at 10:00:49 PM permalink
No witty response here. Just the truth: I don't believe you. I am not usually this blunt or rude. But there is just no way.

$3000 to $245,000 in 15 months through card counting can't be done. You have watched the MIT movie too many times.

I started my blackjack career 11 years ago with $4300. Not all that different than your claim. 3 years later my BR was barely 5 figures. Yes, I had taken about $24,000+, out over those 3 years to survive (barely). In other words I made roughly $30,000 over those first 3 year ($10,000 per year), playing the same red chip level that you describe. And looking back, now, I now know I was damn lucky to have pulled that off.

Now here is why I don't think your results could be so dramatically different than mine. Card counting done right will provide you with a very slim advantage....razor thin. If you play at a 'reasonable RoR', about the best long-term results you can hope for is to turn your BR over twice in a year, and that requires a lot of play time. And if you don't play at a reasonable RoR, you are going to go broke. No 'ifs', 'ands' or 'buts' about it, if you wager more than 2 x Kelly, you will go broke.

Now there have been many stories, legends, myths about folks that go on a roll and run some small amount like $3000 into hundreds of thousands of dollars. I suppose that's possible if you go on some kind of monster roll, winning 80% of your wagers. But's that's just aggressive straight gambling. It has nothing to do with card counting. Card counting is about a very methodical, slow grind, with very conservative wagering (usually fractional Kelly). You just can NOT methodically, slow grind your way from $3000 to $245,000 via card counting in 15 months.

So if you want to amend your story of how you got from $3000 to $245,000 in 15 months, we can then dissect your more recent results, but if you are sticking with $3000 to $245,000 in 15 months, via red chip card counting, your on your own.
DoubleA9
DoubleA9
Joined: Jan 14, 2015
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January 14th, 2015 at 10:42:30 PM permalink
@Kewlj

You are absolutely correct - I did not obtain the results I've stated at the red chip level. I took the hail mary approach of 30 max bets and got lucky at some key points... such as the max bet of $500... or the max bet of $5,000 when I only had $88,000.. (that took balls and sheer stupidity - most would chalk it up to gambling, which indeed it is - speaking numbers... other than knowing when the shoe was rich with 10's & A's).

There is soooo much that I haven't covered. As stated, I've been interested in the allure of counting cards for approximately 9 years. I've literally only gotten the important aspects down in the last 15 months, and even then, I've not become perfect at it. That, to me, is part of the allure. A true challenge. This game, with no guidance has truly challenged me. I didn't know what an agressive spread was early on. Most of my messages are sure to come across as ramblng but I can assure you I've had many, many hours, logged at the tables over the last 15 months aside from my personal business, that it would make most full-timers scratch their heads and re-think what playing full time means. That being said, I've made two huge mistakes - (if you're truly a pro, you'll realize that confronting your mistakes at any time will only further your success in the long term).

#1) Playing too aggressively.

I.E. - Playing a 1-20 spread on a double deck when the casino is empty. Furthermore, when the casino is packed, and you have no comrades; good luck getting away with this for long... Especially if the TGM is on duty! Also, I learned not to play packed tables...

#2) Overbetting my BR.

This one is self explanitory. Do not bet more than you can safely (below 1% RoR) lose. The game can cause you to think you need all of the money in the world to play it safely, and sometimes it's true. Other times you only need 1 max bet worth of ammo, and you hit the ground running...


Aside from whats posted above... throughout extensive travel, aggressive bet spreads, and no spotters, I've been: (86'd, flat-bet, or backed off) 26 times in the last 16 months... all without stepping foot into a Vegas Casino or AC Store. That being said, I wanted to learn my mistakes early on and correct them for a master plan to hit and run all over Sin City with fellow AP'ers.

Thanks for the input guys, I swear I'm not trolling or making sh1t up as I go. It's been a hell of a rollercoaster, and for the time being I'm playing a 1-12 spread on a 25 BB.
DoubleA9
DoubleA9
Joined: Jan 14, 2015
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January 14th, 2015 at 10:53:15 PM permalink
LOL... I Just happened to notice that WOO and WOV are of the same header, therefore likely the same creator. Also, it's nice to note that the wizard has been doing us all a favor since 1997... many years before my stumble upon.
EvenBob
EvenBob
Joined: Jul 18, 2010
  • Threads: 434
  • Posts: 25333
January 14th, 2015 at 10:56:09 PM permalink
Quote: DoubleA9

I wanted to learn my mistakes early on and correct them for a master plan to hit and run all over Sin City with fellow AP'ers.
.



Wow, just like in the movies. Will you have an
actual camera crew following your master plan as
it unfolds? The 'allure' of card counting, you
have got to be kidding.
"It's not enough to succeed, your friends must fail." Gore Vidal
AxelWolf
AxelWolf
Joined: Oct 10, 2012
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  • Posts: 20042
January 14th, 2015 at 10:58:57 PM permalink
Quote: DoubleA9

for a master plan to hit and run all over Sin City with fellow AP'ers.

.

It's this exact type of wording that creates doubt. Real AP's/Counters never say stuff remotely close to that.

I'm not calling you out, I'm just saying.

Now that you have introduced yourself here and plan to hit and run all over Sin City with fellow AP'ers. I assume you're interested in meeting with a few members and even playing some BJ sessions.
♪♪Now you swear and kick and beg us That you're not a gamblin' man Then you find you're back in Vegas With a handle in your hand♪♪ Your black cards can make you money So you hide them when you're able In the land of casinos and money You must put them on the table♪♪ You go back Jack do it again roulette wheels turinin' 'round and 'round♪♪ You go back Jack do it again♪♪
DoubleA9
DoubleA9
Joined: Jan 14, 2015
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January 14th, 2015 at 11:08:32 PM permalink
Before I call it a night, I'd like to point out that I've also viewed the following sites and read the following credible books for more great info.:

www.blackjackapprenticeship.com

www.bj21.com

www.blackjackinfo.com

www.wizardofvegas.com



BOOKS:

Beat The Dealer

Professional Blackjack

Blackjack Attack

Repeat Until Rich

Playing Blackjack as a Business
4,5,
Big Book of Blackjack

Blackbelt in Blackjack

Risk of Ruin

Million Dollar Blackjack




I'm not out to offend anyone. I understand CC'ing is the grind... the slow grind. I will not say that using these techniques with a higher RoR than 1% isn't gambling, but I did use these techniques to get to where I'm at.


This latest loss is humbling - but I'm not worried. I'm upset that the Ace had to fall on all of my 11's.. and the dealer showing a 4,5, or 6 in high counts would still pull that Ace to get a 17 just to beat my gross soft double... I know I played every hand properly, and in the short run made some beautiful plays.. I.E. Doubling A,9 against dealers 6... or Splitting 10's, or my personal favorite... Doubling 9 against dealers 7 at TC 3+ an Doubling hard 8 against dealers 6.


Reallistically it would take a strong coffee... and a lot of time, to explain the last 15 months. I knew that before I posted, but I wanted to become more active with all of the forums I've come across, give some insight, chat with others, and most importantly, give back to the community that has helped me to where I'm at today.

Too long did I sit back and just read...

Blackjack has taught me more invaluable lessons than I could give back.... One big one would be making an advantageous play; such as using a CC to get 2% back on all purchases, on top of ebay bucks (5%) , on top of PayPal's 2% cash back... if you're following me that's 9% back.. and if you spend in excess of 6 figures each quarter... that's an easy 10k or $40,000+ a year. It just so happens that my business outside of blackjack is ebay based.


My bad on getting sidetracked... so much to cover as stated earlier on!
DoubleA9
DoubleA9
Joined: Jan 14, 2015
  • Threads: 1
  • Posts: 22
January 14th, 2015 at 11:18:32 PM permalink
Why get barred from Vegas early on? That's all I'm saying. You could have all of the skill in the world, an 8 figure bankroll, but what would it be worth if you didn't plan?

I'm feeling 18% regret for posting at this point. Seriously.

How hard is it to think just "slightly" ahead.... I.E. driving to Vegas first, getting a SDB, loading it with 6-7 figures... and flying down with 0 cash. That way you avoid TSA.. which I know some of the snarks will just say "uhhh carry a letter from your lawyer, or uhhh.... carry a tax retern uh duhh...". Now where is that going to work out in the real world? LOL??? A plan is just that.

Clearly I'm a step ahead of some, or a step behind. Perspective is key. Maybe some of us haven't had experience wagering purples, yellows, or chocolates - but I will tell you, moving that physicl $$$ for buy-ins can be a real B%#@@. OFC RH'ing Low Denom Chips helps.

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