Moving to Las VegasFor those who are interested (read: none), I'm about to become a permanent resident of Las Vegas. Since graduating law school, I've been looking for jobs in about three or four different cities, one of them being Las Vegas. Today, I accepted a job with a law firm in Green Valley. It's not an attorney position, but the pay and benefits are decent, it's in the field I am interested in, and it's something to do while I await my licensure.
This is pretty exciting for me. It would hard to name a place where I enjoy spending time more, and it will interesting to see if the "fun" wears off after moving here full-time. (I doubt it.)
The Wizard and others have been very helpful so far and it's nice to have some kind of network in place. I'm honestly very enthusiastic about pursuing a life/legal career here in Nevada, let's see how it goes...
FWIW, I guess I am now a "Las Vegas local", so make of that what you will. Any information, tips on housing, dating advice, etc. is welcome :) I may make a poll on what my home casino should be (Umm...all of them?)
I attended G2E (Global Gaming Expo) in Las Vegas October 2-4, 2012. I received a comp courtesy of Geoff Hall (Switch), and usually the registrations go for $200-$1000, so thanks, Geoff!
The first day of the convention, I had business to do so I didn't get to the hall until right before 5:00 P.M., when they closed. I picked up my badge and was walking back through the Palazzo, when I felt like playing some blackjack. (I like the Palazzo more than the Venetian). I looked around for a $10 table, and found one with one other player at it. He looked like a regular guy, not too slick but with a suit jacket and a dress shirt. He had about $200 in chips and was playing a pretty standard positive progression.
I bought in for $200 and flat bet $10 a hand. After a few hands, some winning, some losing, a woman came up and started making $25 bets standing in the middle of the table. This pissed off the other player, who was visibly upset. The woman left, but another guy came up and started watching the play. The other player at the table started getting pretty verbal with the observer, who fired right back. Eventually, the pit said they would call security. I ALMOST colored up and left -- thought I was at a table with just another dyspeptic ploppy. But I stayed, and played for a little while longer.
I noticed the guy was playing perfect basic strategy, and when the dealer hit an A-6, and bust, he said, "I know that rule is worth 0.22% for the player, but I love it when that happens." Okay, so we have another gaming nerd here. I asked him, "What casino do you work for." He said, "I am the C.O.O. of Foxwoods." What?! Okay, that is pretty big time. People seemed to know who he was since the crowd walking through the Palazzo would stop and talk about every 5 minutes. Meanwhile, he just kept playing BJ. It's nice to see a casino executive who enjoys the game, and he was a nice guy. He asked for my advice on a A-5 vs. 6, and I suggested to double, which he lost. D'oh! He said he has a player who has beaten him for $2m+ at BJ this year, and he's not happy about it. I asked him if the player counts, and he said no, he only does a two-step progression of two hands at $15K or one hand of $20K. He also said he double on any 10 total. I said, as long as he is not more than 2 standard deviations away from the mean, I'd be happy to have him in my casino. Especially with the doubling on 10, he is giving up a lot to the house with that play if he is not counting, and he can't keep winning forever. You are always going to have players in the tail end of the bell curve. I can't believe I am advising a casino C.O.O., lol! (I am just parroting what I read on WoO anyways.)
Out of nowhere, he starts saying how much he loves Blackjack Switch, and that nobody plays correct strategy so it does very well in his casino. I say I am meeting the inventor (Geoff) tomorrow, and that I'm associated with Wizard of Odds. He suddenly stands up and reaches across the table to shake my hand. "I love that site!" he says. He says he prints out the strategies to keep them in the pit to show players, and visits the site often for math info. Of course, I tell him about Wizard of Vegas. Anyway, we chatted some more about gaming stuff, and he leaves when he busts out. Fun to hobnob with bigshots. I just wish I had something bigger to pitch, or that I'd asked for a job. I probably could have gotten one...
The show itself was just amazing. It was tiring just to walk through. I hit up all the big slot manufacturers booths first, then the table games. My favorite new slots were Family Guy (natch) and the Wonka slots. Pawn Stars was pretty stupid, but then so is the show. I also saw Storage Wars slots. Nothing else really stood out. The table games were cool and I played all the SHFL games, as well as some of the goofy independents. (3 dice Cee-lo, anyone?) I wandered over to the F&B area and tried an unlimited amount of specialty booze. Acai Cachaca is awesome! They also had soju. Finally, I checked out the automatic bill sorter machines and the casino chairs. Not so interesting.
The WoV meetup happened Wednesday at I love burgers. About 15 people showed up. I got there around 5:00, and the Wizard had somehow convinced two lovely professional ladies to join our group. So much for being female repellant. Some more members showed up, and as usual at a Wizard gathering, it quickly deteriorated into a trivia free-for-all. My first bet was my $5 with Francesca against the Wizard that one of four members would know who Frida Kahlo was. Unfortunately, they didn't. I had too much faith in WoV members art history knowledge. Didn't anybody see the movie with Ashley Judd/Salma Hayek? The Wizard kept running down to the other side of the table to ask PaiGowDan questions, like "what numbers border 00 in roulette" and "what is the largest kind of whale?" I won $5 from Geoff on that last one. I wanted to bet that BuzzPaff would know who President Truman beat in the 1948 election, but Wizard declined. A better bet would be what Buzz didn't know. He expounded on duckpin bowling like he wrote the book about it. Charles Mosseau bet the Wizard that I would know who President Nixon's running mate was in 1960 (I didn't). He then bet that I couldn't name at least 7 of the Supreme Court justices. I named all nine. I made the Wizard $40.
The food came and I shared my garbage fries with DJTeddyBear. I also talked with lucky about his blackjack game, and Paradigm and Brandon (SONBP2) about taxes. (Yay, tax!) Finally, the Wizard initiated his trivia contest. I felt pretty good about a lot of the questions, and only missed a couple. I ended up winning the contest. I took the cash value of the painting, rather than the painting. We did a picture, and a couple of us (miplet, DJ, Wizard, Brandon, Dan (not PaiGow), and JB) went to TI to throw down at the tables. JB decided to play video poker, while the rest of us settled on craps after we couldn't find a BJ or Tiles table. It was really quiet at the table. WoV members are so serious about our gambling -- no talking during play! I started out on the don't pass, and was winning, but got some nasty looks from the rest of the table, so I switched. I should have stayed on the don't. The table stayed cold (nobody was making points), and I busted out pretty quickly. So did the Wizard. DJ and Miplet were holding their own using a 6/8 strategy. Everybody else got pretty much killed. So I left, and went back to Bill's where I played and won a little back. Fun times.
Teddys I usually referred to him as President Thomas E. Dewey. I mean it said in the newspapers he won, I remember that much.
As for betting what I would not know, I wish I would have had someone else grade my paper. So my 14 and !/2 would not have been disqualified as I mistakenly graded it, not recognizing my own handwriting.
I suspect you are still mad about my not letting you sleep on the couch when en-route from Vegas to Denver.
Josie rarely lets any of my friends stay overnight, as she hates cops serving no-knock warrants and waking her up.
Plus, you assumed I owned a couch. I do now, but not then.
"...but I got nasty looks from the rest of the table, so I swithed..."
You're at the table to win, not make friends, lol
I can't take any credit for the women. They were friends of teliot, who stood us up in favor of Obama and Romney (the dinner was during the debate). Give me a brainy woman over the age of 40 and I think I can hold my own in conversation.
Nice summary Teddy - glad you enjoyed the experience. Next tyear if Mike holds the quiz I will suggest wroking in pairs - can I bagsy you as my partner now? :-) (I'm not bad at UK questions hehe)... Hope to see you next year at G2E.
I think I will add a rule that former champions can play, but can't win again. Teams are also a possibility.
Sounds like a great time, and that you almost wound up moving to Connecticut with a new job? [g]
Nice attendance for Wizard meet-up. Not sure I would ever show as I am embarrassed at how bad I am at trivia contests!
"Not sure I would ever show as I am embarrassed at how bad I am at trivia contests!"
You would have at least got the chess question right. I think.
Nice write up teddys. It is okay to feel a little left out when 3 or 4 WOV members get together, but when this many get together, I really feel on the outside now. I may have to make plans to attend next year.
Wizard " I think I will add a rule that former champions can play, but can't win again"
In light of this I am dropping my case in Federal Court. Congratulations TEDDYS !
Did anyone think to try to give us a chance at the trivia questions, as was done at some previous event?
WOW. Great story about playing with the Foxwoods COO.
I was one of the four members that was asked who Frida Kahlo was. Frankly, I still dont know. The group's best guess was that she was a Nobel prize winner. When asked in what catgory, we immediately caved and threw in our second choice guess: that of a profession surf boarder. If I recall correctly, we were eventually told that she was a Mexican artist of some type.
I'm just glad that I knew George H.W. Bush's middle names (Herbert Walker). But I still want to know why I was singled out to get the question!
I'm not sure if "I shared my garbage fries with DJTeddyBear" was quite right. The truth is, although we were seated together, I had gotten up to talk to the guys at the end of the table when your fries showed up. As the waitress was trying to determine who they belonged to, I took one, with the intention to shock the waitress (mission accomplished.) When I came back to you, you offered to share (thanks), and I told you about the stolen fry.
As I recall, it was me giving you the biggest "stink eye" for betting the donts. But I quickly followed that I was just screwing around and that you should play the way you want to play. I did it not so much to annoy you, but because you probably were expecting it. Truthfully, because I was playing place bets, your Don't Pass wasn't bothering me at all.
On the other hand, maybe you were radiating negative energy. After you and the others left, Miplet and I did OK.
Blackjack tournament update #2The second round started at 6:00 P.M. with a tougher group of players. The player to my left was an older woman from Ypsilanti, Michigan. She was also the friendliest player at the table. All the others were sullen guys like me. Of course, I immediately detected she lacked the killer instinct and pegged her as fresh meat...:) Play was strong at first with the guys making big bets and the woman making medium sized bets. I bet medium-to-large. I got decent hands. Only problem was that the dealer was busting almost every hand! I wish I had been playing real blackjack with this dealer. She must have bust 75% of the time. I wasn't able to get any swings, and the biggest bettor was cleaning up. I hit a blackjack, but didn't have a big enough bet out. I also lost a double down, which really hurt my stack.
After the 15th hand, I had 20K, the woman had 16K, and the two leaders had 25K and 29K. Only the top player advanced. I was still within shouting distances of the leaders, but I couldn't seem to get anything but 15s on my hands. On the 19th hand, one of the leaders doubled for less with his remaining stack on a A-2 against a strong dealer card which I thought was a shrewd move -- probably because he won. I thought he had it locked up (he increased to about 60K), but that was not to be. On the last hand, everybody went all in. He bet $200. For the last couple bets, I had been parlaying (going all-in) and winning, so I had a decent stack, but I wasn't sure I had enough to catch the leader, even if I got a BJ. First card, ace. First card to the woman to my left, ace. Second card to me, 2. D'oh! Second card to woman, ten! Turns out she had enough to take the crown with her 2:1 BJ win. So the player nobody expected to win . . . won. I'm convinced the way to win is to get a BJ on a big bet. It really cripples your opponents.
So, I'm out at unless I win one of the wild card drawing spots tomorrow. Has been a fun experience.
Good luck in the drawing. Sounds like the tournament is like a Poker Tournament in a way. And when you ain't catching cards, you ain't gonna win.
I'm glad you had a great time, Teddys, though I hope you get in on the WC tomorrow. If you do not get back into the tournament...I hope that lady wins.
I tried to do a BJ Tournament once, but I didn't care for it. It seemed like the first ten hands were just bet small and keep yourself in it, don't get knocked out early. You would then increase your bets 10-15 and try to do it according to what everyone else was doing to improve your position to first-third at the table if you weren't already there. The next three hands seemed to mainly be about trying to pick a good time to take a shot at taking the lead. In the end, most everyone just bets everything, except the leader, the leader tries to be just enough to still be ahead if second place doubles.
That's how it seems to me. Strategies very similar to Final Jeopardy wagering.
I did check out the site of that gentleman whose book you posted. I like the BJ Simulator. I've been counting single-deck for a bit, got up to $1500 in just under 200 hands spreading $5-$80. I ended up losing it, though, dealer kept pulling Naturals on me when I was betting high on good counts.
Sounds as if Tournament Play would appeal to all these BJ players who claim other players are taking 'their' cards.
Did not get a wildcard. Watched the finals, and play was pretty good, although I did notice a lot of "square" comments, like "this dealer is hot," etc. Who cares how the dealer does? Another tourney at Red Rock in two weeks.
Oh, the winner of the tournament was game inventor of Shortie Blackjack and Break Poker Wayne Hong! I talked to him after the finals. He said he also won a $100,000K tournament at the Stardust. What a player!
Blackjack tournament update #1
The first round of the $25,000 blackjack tournament at Green Valley Ranch is complete. Registration was late last night and this morning. There are a lot of players -- I would estimate in the low-to-mid 100s. I was assigned a 1:30 P.M. session. This morning, they had a nice little breakfast buffet for us with coffee, juice, tea and three kinds of pastry. Unfortunately, I didn't know about it and bought a $7.50 coffee and croissant from the cafe. D'oh!
The tournament is top heavy with payouts for only the top six players. Each round consists of a six player table, top two advance, twenty hands and $10,000 in chips per round. $100 minimum, no max. Blackjack pays 2:1, 6 deck shoe, H17, RSA, no LS. I arrived at 1:25 for the 1:30 session, and there were only five people at the table. The sixth guy never showed up. Okay, fine, that increases the odds enormously for everyone else at the table. Play started at about 1:35, and I was last to act on the first hand. Everybody went small, so I went big off the top with $400-$600 bets. I immediately identified the player to my right as the only serious competition, and began mimicking her bets to keep pace. It became obvious that the rest of the players weren't going to wager any significant amounts of money. On the fifth hand, I got an eleven vs. 10 up with a $800 bet out. I doubled down, and got a 10 for 21. Dealer made 20, so it was a HUGE swing in my favor. Amazingly, no one else was betting big to catch up, so I kept making $100-$400 bets to maintain my position. Then the competent player to my right started betting big in an attempt to catch up. Unfortunately, she was losing almost every bet. My chances were looking good.
Finally, she pushed all in with a good amount, about $5,000. Of course, she gets a freakin' BJ! This put her WAY out in front, although I was still in second. On the 15th hand, there was a mandatory count, She had $13K, I had $10K, and the third place player had $7K. I continued betting the minimum to keep myself in second and in a position to advance. On the last hand, I was last to act, which is always a huge advantage. The third place player bet everything except her yellow chips. I requested a count, but I was rejected. (You are only allowed the one mandatory count at hand 15). I eyeballed her stack (she kept keeping her hand in front of it), and estimated she had $7,000 left. So I bet as much so if we both lost, I would beat her by one chip, and I had enough to cover her if we both won (and she didn't double or get a BJ).
As the hand was being dealt, I was suddenly terrified that I had misread her stack and she actually had $8,000 left. I just couldn't be sure. She got a pat 17. First place had a soft 17. I had a 13. Dealer had a strong upcard. Soft 17 stands. I hit, and get an 8 for 21 (!). Thank you for standing. Dealer makes seventeen, so I and competent player advance. Next round is at 6:00 P.M., and I expect the competition to be much harder. Cross your fingers for me to finish in the money!
Anything Ken Smith has to say about blackjack is worth listening to tournaments or otherwise.
"Finally, she pushed all in with a good amount, about $5000. Of course she gets a freakin' BJ!"
Shes counting, kick her out! LOL
Continued luck teddys. May you be the one with the big bet BJ next round.
Green Valley Ranch
Here at Green Valley Ranch on a three-night weekend comp including a $25K blackjack tournament, and also doing a Wizard review. Wow, is this place posh! Not sure how a flea such as myself scored this freebie -- I'm usually good for one night at Terrible's. Wandered around the complex and pool looking for hotel checkin for about 20 minutes. Freakin' huge. Amazing pool with view of the Strip (higher elevation here). Room has a Bose Wave Radio. Also, housekeeping is super-cute Asian chick who makes me think the wrong thing...ah, well, might as well enjoy myself. I'm sure they'll realize soon that I'm a semi-vagrant who took two RTC buses to get here and bought new clothes at the thrift store in lieu of doing laundry...
>bought new clothes at the thrift store in lieu of doing laundry.
Good for you! Life is to short to do a laundry or clean an oven! Good luck with the Asian chick.
They're not new clothes, they're different clothes lol. Plus, Jeopardy champs can basically pull off whatever they want. Good luck in the tournament.
You are my hero, sir. Looking forward to your Review.
Good luck in the tournament and anxious to read your review.
Congrats Teddys! For some reason I had missed along the way that you had entered the legal profession. Best wishes. It sure ain't Boston Legal...
I assume you will keep an out of state driver's license and mailing address?
Congrats on the new job. Maybe your new law buddies can hook you up with a Hawaiian ID ;)
I'm sure you will do fine on the Nevada bar exam.
I would indeed say that the correct vote is "all of them", however, you enjoyed Green Valley Resort and you will be working for a Green Valley law firm and so you might as well live in or near Green Valley.
Glad to hear that things came together!
At the very least you'll want a circuit of home casinos. It's all about offer/promo management:-)
Congratuations! I already knew, but it bears repeating. I'd be happy to help with advice on settling in.
One piece I'll give now, that others may benefit from, is to not surrender your Ohio ID when you apply for a Nevada driver's license. The Vegas casinos, especially on the Strip, treat locals like second class citizens. You'll get much better offers and mailers with an out-of-state address. Hopefully you can have mail forwarded that is sent to wherver is on your license now.
I predict you'll find the South Point to be your favorite casino once you settle in, assuming you also live in Green Valley.
Dating advice: Only date hot blondes!! :D
The apartment complex I live in is nice, it is off of Sunset & Green Valley in Henderson. There is a vacant unit next to me if you wanted to be neighbors.
Cool man, glad to hear it's working out for you. I for one would be impressed if you were able to string out your free hotel offers for as long as possible without renting an actual home :).
South Point? 2x at craps; Heavy Heat at BJ, even on lowest tables: ... yeah, its all 3:2 but if you even THINK of raising your bet they boot you out. Silverton I could understand, but South Point? Well, the rooms are really nice, that's true but you will soon be buying property in Nevada and will only use rooms for occasional convenience and DUI avoidance.