Posted by AZDuffman
Apr 30, 2011

Card Bending by Aisan Players

Another monte carlo night story for anyone who likes them. And an observation of sorts.

All doctors and medical people last night. With doctors you never know what you will get. They are similar to pilots in their off-duty behavior. By that I mean they have such a high-stress; high-responsibility job that off duty when they unwind they unwind in a big way such is their need to relax. This group was fairly professional and reserved. A good thing.

I was dealing poker and had a less than full table, about five players. One was an asian guy. At these hold-em tables players do not act like they do at a real card room. They will pick their cards up to look, not peek "blackjack dealer style" as you see on ESPN. Anyways, the point of my post. The asian guy, while very nice and polite, almost seemed to have a reflex to bend the cards. He would look, put them face down, and his hand was bending them. Bending them along the long axis, big time. If I had not asked him to stop hios cards would have looked like he was dealing three-card-monte. He didn't even seem to realize he was doing it.

Having been doing this a few years I explained he would get booted in a real casino for doing this as it was considered "marking" the cards. He left play early, I don't think he knew poker. But what is it with the bending? Do they really bend the cards that much in asian games?


FleaStiff Apr 30, 2011

Heck, it could be a nervous first-timer or it could have been anything.

Asians have many playing behaviors and many tipping behaviors attributed to them. Some of them are probably true. Was he marking the cards? I don't know. If he was not, would he be offended at the accusation? Probably yes. I would have first said 'these cards have to last all night so please don't bend them' and only if he persisted would I use terms like 'marking' and 'cheating'. Its sort of like rolling the dice all the way to the backboard, even a flea oriented joint doesn't jump down the guys throat the fist time.

Right now the Asians are the ones with the money so most of the comments are about Asians. Asian men are supposed to be poor tippers, Asian females are supposed to be non-tippers. Asians are not the only Baccarat players who mangle the cards with glee but is quite common for them to do it.

Even at MiniBacc Asians who are perfectly fluent in English will speak in Chinese from one end of the table to the other. The casinos don't much care if a few lone players in the middle get offended.

dm Apr 30, 2011

I seriously doubt that every Asian speaks Chinese. A lot of them seem to think that the bounties of the sea are to be gobbled up by them, lest the rest of the world get their fair share.

AZDuffman Apr 30, 2011

@FleaStiff: might have been nerves. I didn't accuse him of marking them or anything, but I had to bring it as he didn't seem to get the hint about them lasting all night. Actually longer, the comnpany rarely buys new cards. I keep looking for "cut cards" for when I deal BJ as the cuts are in such bad shape, when they show up at all.

Posted by AZDuffman
Apr 17, 2011

Where is dealer hell?

Had time to enjoy a nice, cold beer before meeting my brother for dinner so I decided to stop at the bar in the casino. The bar is close to the "Big Six" wheel (might be called "Chuck-a-Luck" in some places.) For those who don't know, this is the wheel with different denominations of US Currency and you bet on the wheel sopping on them, they pay odds equal to the denomination. (ie: a $5 bill pays 5-1.)

Now let me tell you, these people are going crazy when they win. And they are going crazy for winning $1-2. Bartender said it wasn't that crowd that night but stated that game is the loudest around. Louder than even craps, which is saying something since a craps table will hold twice the number of players. Management must know this as these wheels have a killer house edge and this wheel is placed where several bars and the buffet make a kind of "re-enterence" to the casino, so the excitement draws people in.

I told the bartender I thought that game was a big deal at age 12 at the church fair but outgrew it then. But it seems to attract crowds. Having worked it I think twice at Monte Carlo Nights I can say it is not a terribly challenging game to deal. The state gaming commission requires only 4 hours of training4 to run it. 4 hours!

For this reason I think this game might be considered "dealer hell." Right up there with Casino War and Let it Ride. But it might be me, last dealer I talked to said he *liked* dealing Let it Ride. Takes all kinds I guess.


FinsRule Apr 17, 2011

I would think that dealing the same game repeatedly would be more "hellish" then variety. I'm not a dealer, but I'm used to boring jobs, which I imagine being a dealer is.

So my question is: Would you rather deal one week of blackjack, OR, one day of blackjack, one day of craps, one day of three card, one day of big six, one day of let it ride?

benbakdoff Apr 17, 2011

Isn't Chuck-a-Luck the game with three dice in a wire cage shaped like an hour glass? I used to see it at Foxwoods, but I never stopped to watch it.

The Big Six Wheel gets lots of action when the buses start to roll in. Coupons for this game are distributed to passengers and boy do they ever go crazy! With the house edge on this game, I imagine the casino goes crazy as well.

FleaStiff Apr 17, 2011

Yeah, Big Six Wheel or Wheel of Fortune (prior to trademark issues), not chuck a luck which is the Cubes in a Cage thingy.

Its the traditional carney come-on that greets all entrants. Its easy to play, no lengthy explanations and if those dumb and dumbers squeal a bit when they win then by all means its a great magnet for suckers.

By the way, the best strategy is to be on the one dollar at an eleven percent house edge or else try to read the wheel with 65 percent accuracy and therefore be in positive expected value land.

As to Dealer Hell... probably depends more on the casino and the toke rate than anything else. New Mexico makes dealers perform tasks that prisoners perform in Nevada. For most LIR is hell but craning your neck to look up at that wheel while being so bored you can't even remember whether this spin is clockwise or counterclockwise is probably not so thrilling either.

AZDuffman Apr 17, 2011

Thanks for those who explained Chuck-A-Luck. I have never seen it and as I said, guessed it might be a west-of-the-rockies name for Big-6.

Just had to make a blog entry. I mean, you had to see this thing. I did feel bad for those bartenders.

DJTeddyBear Apr 17, 2011

I'm always shocked to see ANYONE playing the Big Six. But they do, and, yeah, they are loud after almost every spin. And with the frequency of the spins, they easily overtake the craps table for loudest / rowdiest.

Yeah, Chuck-A-Luck is the dice in a cage thing. Here's the Wiz' page on it:

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It's similar to Sic-Bo, and Big Six, in that there are no chairs. Apparently, the casino doesn't expect players to play for long. I wonder what that says about the lack of chairs at a craps table...

FleaStiff Apr 18, 2011

Yeah, I think Chuck A Luck is a stripped down version of Sic Bo designed for the Sic Bo players who mainly bet on Big or Little.

Dealers might say they enjoy dealing a particular game, it doesn't mean its true that they enjoy it.

Its like the old carney come-on of "See the amazing 120 pound man eating chicken" ... the money is not made when that first local yokel pays the admission fee, but when he goes and finds his friends and brings them over to see if they will fall for it too. That Big Six Wheel is a camaraderie sucker. One little old lady may not enter the casino but if five of them approach the big six wheel together... they will continue on in after that.

Posted by AZDuffman
Mar 06, 2011

Putting dealing experience to good use

So this weekend I went to a college-buddy's house and was pressed into service dealing BJ for their fundraiser. Kind of a blast and wearing the vest and dealer shirt I already own, well, people loved that! A little differenet than I am used to as I was the only dealer there, but I got to design a tournament myself! Got about 90% of the way I wanted it and what didn't work out as planned well 90% of that 10% worked out better. Any bugs I now know how to fix.

The downside was no professional-looking layout or table, had to make due. An upside, no 8-hour "bottle to throttle" rule. I didn't get loaded but was able to enjoy wine and food. In a private home, smoking allowed first time at an event I did. Big cigar crowd. I like a cigar and can deal with the smoke for a night, but did learn what an ashtray must feel like.

Other firsts included dropping real cash for the first time (legal, it was a fundraiser tournament for prizes) and for the first time ever heard a player say, "GIMME MONKEY!" (There are numbers, jacks, queens, kings, aces, and jokers removed, there is no effing monkey!) Yes, the guy was oriental, Chinese I think I was told.

The bartender eventually played a round, was given a final-table seat by a leaving player, and won. After he is telling me, "do you have a card? Get some cards! We need to exchange cards!" I tried telling him I live 250 miles from there and no one is going to pay me what it is worth it to me to travel. Reply, "Still, get some cards!"

Rest was almost $800 to the local children's hospital and a buddy who's wife may like me or kill me because he is looking at near casino-grade BJ table and Craps table.


FleaStiff Mar 07, 2011

I don't know about a professional grade layout...

but I don't think you should be going anywhere without a layout or two rolled up and stuffed into the trunk of your car.

Even those tiny two-sided felt things for 8.98 are better than nothing.

For you own practice you don't need a professional craps layout but if you are doing occasional informal fund raiser gigs, don't go anywhere without a layout.... and get those darn business cards printed up!

By the way, would you say that all these Monte Carlo Fundraiser Nights For Charity reflect an increase in gambling fever amongst the populace or simply a removal of inhibitions about gambling because there are now Indian casinos at every wide place in the road?

AZDuffman Mar 07, 2011

I think you are very right about the layout--after thinking about it $35 or so would buy a basic layout, shoe, 4 decks, box to put it all in, and some business cards. Eve n 4 gigs a year in that neighborhood might be worth it. As to the MC Night popularity, not sure if I would say it is "reduced inhibitions" as that seems a little strong of a statement and implies people think gambling is wrong. But yes, it does reflect more casinos out there IMHO. You get statements like:

"Mary's husband always plays that!"

"I've seen this at the casino but never played..."

"Is this how they play at the casino?"

Or put another way, say it was 1980. Very few people would have been in a casino or known those who had been. I knew how to play BJ at age 7 or so but only as fun, not with casino rules and certainly not for betting. Today the same 7 yeaer old probably saw "21" and knows all about it.

Most times my 7 player table is 1-2 peoploe who know how and have played casino-level-they wiill even ask the rules. 1-2 have seen the game but play slots and not table games. 1-2 can't spell casino or know what one is but want to have fun. This night was different-all high rollers who had played. Made the job easier and hareder at the same time.

FleaStiff Mar 07, 2011

For a layout, I'd say large size is better than having a complete set and a nice box for it.

I'd get a craps layout on one side and BJ on the other or whatever you think will suit your Monte Carlo Night gigs the most. Just avoid those tiny toys. Get a good sized layout even if the craps stick is a short one.

Yeah, I guess you are right. Kids nowadays have seen the movies. I recall when I was young enough to be playing Strip Blackjack (instead of Strip Poker). I knew that a blackjack dealer had to "Draw to 16 and stop on all 17s" so thats what I did as a player. Not a good strategy for blackjack but perfectly fine for strip blackjack where the goals are a bit different anyway.

Probably most of your attendees want a good measure of realism, but I've never understood this Asian call for "Monkey". Its more common at the Baccarat tables anyway. Never understood it though. Never will.

Some dealers in Vegas carry an extra shirt in the trunk of their car so you should probably have a layout and a deck or two in the trunk. Most of those cards may get tossed, but have them with you ... you never know who might actually work in a casino (either then or later).

FleaStiff Mar 08, 2011

Just for the record: I did not mean to imply that "lowered inhibitions" meant a sense of gambling being wrong. I meant more that it was no longer strange or novel with so many Indian casinos around the place and so much advertising about them. It seems that today there are billboards, TV-ads, TV shows and TV travelogs about gambling whereas decades ago Reno and Las Vegas were not just geographically remote places but the gambling was psychologically remote from every day life.

Posted by AZDuffman
Jan 23, 2011

Once you get into dice dealing there is no getting out

This wasn't me but I find it humorous nonetheless.

Walking into a dealing gig I enter the nice hotel, minding my own business and I hear, "Hey, I know you!" I know the face but have to look at his nametag to get the name. It is an old craps-school classmate! After the "I remember you from craps class!" he asks why I am there. Well, to deal craps at the party someone is having here, of course. What odds!

So we chat and he is taking the new class as he missed the final cut last time. They asked the game he wanted to learn and he said, "Blackjack." After the "craps test" they give everyone (basically they tell you the odds and ask you to do the math) he did well. Said he wasn't going to dump but knew if he did well there would be pressure to take craps. He did well. They looked at hand dexterity. He did well. Why wouldn't he, after 8 weeks of class the previous year? They ask again and he says he wants to learn BJ because he knows he can make it and will be willing to learn craps later.

The instructor didn't like this and said if the guy *did* take BJ it would be held against him in the audition. And my imperession was the guy was saying somnething like, "You want to take BJ that is fine, but you better audition as good as someone who has dealt at Caesars Palace since the day Jay Sarno opened the joint until now. Now quit fooling around and get over to the craps group!"

That is humor, of course. But he said when you look at the newbies and how hard their hands are compared to even being "out of practice" at cheque handling you can see why the guy isn't letting him anywhere but craps.

They are only 3 days into class I guess. I gave him my number and offered to shill for the class a buffet or steakhouse comp. Which I would as some days looking for work are already boring. But I can see the conversation:

"Sure, come on down!"


"How do you want me to shill and when do eat?"
"Shill my foot you cheap SOB, get your tail over there and get in practice cutting cheques. We are covering free-odds today so be prepared when I ask YOU first.

If my UE claim gets approved I will give it a go if they agree. All big IFs.

Posted by AZDuffman
Jan 15, 2011

Some dealers are common sense challenged

Missed Q4 of the Steeler game dealing today. Well, it was on, but I could only go by the cheers as to what was happening. Some guy was presenting awards for his company and cheers go off--he knew it wasn't for what he was saying.

So I set up my table. Not hard but takes 15 minutes or so to build my bank. When done I sit down and the other craps dealer walks inm walks up to my table, takes a working stack and stands like he is going to start dealing! I guess I really gave a look because the pit boss ushered him to the other table then told me he saw my look. I said to the pit boss, "Did he think that bank built itself?" Maybe he didn't see the other table, but even so the bank is never set up for you. Sheeese.

Hottie decides to blow on the dice like hotties do. Only 2-3 at the table so I kind of pulled her aside and told her not to do that. She thought it was not allowed, but I said I really didn't care but mentioned how many hands handle those dice. She never did that again.......;

One guy last night was being a real jerk. Seems to think just because it is a party there are no table limits. Well, there are until I have an unlimited number of chips. He was a real craps-pig, meaning the kind of person who knows 3 bets yet thinks he is ready to sit box at Caesars. Eventually says in a sort-of smartass tone that I had better not try to apply for a job at the real casino the way I deal. I replied in a polite but BTFO tone that if it was a casino there would be four of us at the table and one on break vs just me alone. He backed off a little.

I am learning to use the field to get rid of people you don't like. Something about all those numbers attracts people. I "sell" it harder than the center bets. When an annoying drunk hears "16 WAYS TO WIN" they cannot resist. More amazing is no matter how often you tell people it is one bet they put their chip on the 2/12 "bubbles" to get that double.

The dice pit, even just for parties, is the place to be.


FleaStiff Jan 16, 2011

Build a bank? Fifteen minutes?

Isn't this just you as the dealer taking from you as the boxman a stack of chips?

Good floorperson though... he saw your look. He was alert.

Women kissing the dice is strange.

AZDuffman Jan 16, 2011

The chips come in both really big racks that are not like caino racks but something you store your home poker chips in. I break them into 15-20 stacks of 20 each and 20 chips high each, just like at the casino-why reinvent the wheel? They don't just stack in slots, they must be set up and lined by eye against the wall, neatly. Takes longer than it sounds. In addition I have to make "buyin cups" of about 30 chips each, 8-12 depending on crowd size and how many cups I have. Finally the craps table gets used as a staging area for all the other games and there is often some other junk that must be moved somewhere. With no reason to rush, it takes 15-20 minutes. Some guys just use the rack of chips as their bank, which I think looks unprofessional.

Women like to blow on the dice but this one was "kissing" them. I could have made a play on the old AIDS adds and said "when you kiss these dice you kiss everyone that held them" but that would have been over the top. People just don't realize how many people handle the dice (lots) and how often they get cleaned (never.)

AZDuffman Jan 16, 2011

Actually, now that I reread it you might be desdcribing taking a "working stack" from the bank and not the bank itself?

odiousgambit Jan 18, 2011

Do you think you have ever run into cheats who do things like past-posting or whatever? Seems like a one guy show could get hit, some folks wouldnt care who they were cheating I imagine.

AZDuffman Jan 23, 2011

They are usually cahrity parties so no reason to cheat. I might have been past-posted but I don't think so and if so not for much.