Monday, June 26, 2006

The Chip

I have no idea what the problem was. In any case, here it is.
These were made by Gaming Partners International and are of the same quality as what are still refered to as Paulson chips. The only difference being that the chip mold does not have the hat and canes.
Many many thanks to Gene Trimble and Pat (the GPI sales rep)

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Almost Semi-Famous

Is there no happy medium?
In the not so distant past our room, like many others around town, was very slow. Too many dealers and not enough players.
In the last two weeks things have certainly taken a turn for better.
It is amazing how many familiar faces have returned "home". "Welcome Home" is exactly how I greet them too. I want them to view our room as their home base.
I expect this new found prosperity to last at least through the WSOP. After all, we're just across the street.


Today one of those returning faces happened to be the newest WPT Millionaire (WPTM). He was in the 5s. The NL game was ramming and jamming. The ratio of locals/tourists was about 50/50. The local in the 1s happened to be a friend of the WPTM. At the conclusion of one hand the 1s said to the WPTM
"You play cards like that? How did you ever win a WPT event?"
The 7s tourist raised his eyebrows and asked the WPTM which event he had won. The WPTM without missing a beat stated that the 1s was just "making shit up". The 1s agreed that he was just "making shit up". The game continued.
I wanted desperately to place a copy of one of the poker rags, with the WPTMs picture on the cover, in the hands of the 7s. Of course I didn't do it, but it would have been fun.
I have to wonder if the 7s will watch the Mandalay WPT event when it is televised and if he will put two and two together.........


Back to the feast or famine thing. Friday I worked OT. I also dealt 9 tables in a row. We've somehow gone from 1 table pushes to 9 table pushes?? My old back isn't sure it likes dealing 4.5 hours at a stretch. My mind is too warped to even notice. Saturday and today both included 6 table pushes.
I'm really NOT complaining. Business is business and it beats the hell out of sitting dead-spreads.


The chip collecting world is descending on Las Vegas. The international convention of the Casino Chips and Gaming Token Collectors Club will be held June 28- July 1 at the Riviera. If you are in town you can attend by purchasing a one day membership for $5. Better yet, just pay $20 for the yearly membership which includes 4 editions of the award winning quarterly magazine. If you have any appreciation for the history of gaming and the chips used in gaming you will be amazed at the wares offered for sale by the approximately 100 vendors. It really is a bit overwhelming.
In conjunction with the convention, poker and black jack tournaments are held at the Palms. The long-time tournament coordinator will be abroad during this year's convention and I was asked to stand in for him this year. I agreed with one condition that this was a one time thing and that the previous coordinator would assume his duties again next year.
I did not expect that a chip would be produced to commemorate my role, but here it is in all it's glory.
NOT! Blogger is being a Bugger with pic uploads. Three unsuccessful attempts. I give up for now. I'll post a pic of the chip ASAP.


I spoke with Linda tonight shortly after she registered for the Casino Employee WSOP event.
Hopefully she will still remember me after she wins her bracelet.
Good Luck Linda!!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Crack This

The 10:00AM weekday $55 buy-in tournaments have proven to be well attended. As many as 60 players have participated with the majority of them gaining entry by having their aces "cracked" in a live game. We have been averaging between 30 and 40 aces "cracked" per day. Keep in mind that we only have 10 tables and business has not been such that all 10 tables are in operation.

The next time your aces go down in flames, know that it is not at all uncommon.

I found the remnants of the above coupon on the floor under the dealer's chair as I pushed into a no limit game. I guess the recipient of this coupon was so pissed after losing his entire stack with AA that he couldn't see the forest for the trees. This coupon could have easily been sold for at least $35. With a little bit of skill and a touch of luck it could have been turned into over $1,000.

I suppose that ripping it up and throwing it at the dealer seemed like the proper thing to do at the time.............Temper Temper

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Shared Responsibility

Last Thursday I played poker at Wynn. I lost a little more than a rack of chips. Blue chips, but still. It's just a temporary set back, right? 12 wins in 14 outings...and counting.

While on one of my many smoke breaks during the Wynn session I ran into Mr.B. He used to play at the Palms daily. I asked how he was doing and mentioned that I hadn't seen him for awhile. He proceded to tell me the story of why he doesn't play at the Palms anymore.
In a nut shell:
He was playing NL
He had AA
He won the pot
He is convinced that the loser of the pot snatched a few red chips before the pot was pushed.


He just did nothing except decide to not play poker there anymore.

I told him that he HAS to say something right then. Right now.
Yes, the dealer is responsible for making sure that this does not happen.....BUT as a player you also have a responsibility for protecting your hand and your money.
When I asked him why he hadn't said anything he said that the "dealer is insecure and he didn't want to cause a scene."

The (allegedly) guilty player needs to be exposed. To be barred. To be made a fool of. Flocks of locust need to descend upon her and feast on her eye balls. Too dramatic for you? Tough.

To just let it happen is not an option in my opinion.


I stumbled upon this review of our poker room.
It's quite complimentary. Thanks for the props!

Friday, June 16, 2006

The Ever Popular Tipping Discussion

I spend a portion of my day off (Thursday) dealing a private poker tournament at the Four Seasons Hotel at Mandalay Bay. Since I had never been there before and was unsure of where I was supposed to be I valet parked and asked the valet for directions. I'll admit that I typically just self-park. Maybe I'm cheap...and maybe I'm a little embarrassed by the tidy-ness of my vehicle. (flip a coin)
In any case, upon leaving I handed the valet a $5 bill and was on my way. Today I wondered if my toke had been appropriate. Google to the rescue...
I found this site:
It looks like I was slightly on the high side of the norm. No big deal really.
Then I looked at the rest of the suggestions.

Low and behold I see this:

Casino Gratuities
Drink Server - $1 to $2 per drink.
Blackjack Dealer - $5 chip per gambling session (higher at high limit tables). Also, you can set up a side bet for the dealer as a tip, usually at the minimum betting level.
Poker Dealer - $5 chip per dealer rotation (usually every half hour). If you win a big pot, tip a bit extra.

So there you have it!
As it is written, so shall it be.
$100 per hour PLUS "a bit extra" for the big pots.

I'm ordering the 'vette tomorrow.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

PokerStars Freeroll

Online Poker

I have registered to play in the PokerStars World Blogger Championship of Online Poker!

This Online Poker Tournament is a No Limit Texas Holdem event exclusive to Bloggers.

Registration code: 2379250

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

The tournament player mentality??

Sure, I've dealt a few tournaments. Previously, most of them have been "special events". Maybe it was Rock Star Poker and maybe it was a bunch of contractors who purchased DeWalt tools and won a trip to Las Vegas. In general, these have been fun to deal and the players were having fun.

My wish that our daily tournaments would be over by the time I get to work at 1PM proved fruitless. My first down today was a tournament down. There were 47 entrants (It's capped at 40 with alternates for the first hour). The blinds were 1000/2000 and were raised to 2000/4000 shortly after I plopped my ass in the dealers chair. To say that it was a tedious 30 minutes would be an understatement. During my down there was a short 5-10 minute break. In the 20-25 other minutes my actions were questioned no less than 5 times. In every instance, I was correct. (Thank you poker gods) I tried to just grin and bear it but......
The one time I did become visibly annoyed was during a hand with an all in. After I pushed the side pot to one player and the main pot to another player, a player who was not even involved in the hand had a stroke. He said I was totally wrong. I explained to him that the 9s had won the main pot and the 6s had won the side pot. Oh, he says, I didn't see you make a side pot. Sir, OF COURSE I MADE A SIDE POT! was my only comment.
Actually, I even set it up long hand by taking the all-in amount from each player while announcing/walking everyone through what I was doing. It's easier just to announce $XXX in the side pot, but I've found that some people need to visualize it by seeing the side pot built.

If you are going to be the table captian, the least you could do would be PAY ATTENTION.

With 47 entries first place paid $1120 and second place paid $600+ (I don't remember exactly) 4 places cashed.

My first down wasn't an aberration. The whole day was filled with table captians. If I'm a mistake in progress I appreciate the help. If not, I've got it under control. Just be quiet and play.

One new promotion that began today was the Aces Cracked promotion. Since you win a $55 seat in our daily tournament if your aces are cracked, it is required that surveillance be called. They review the tape and approve the "pay out". If anyone doubts the frequency of aces being cracked, come spend a few hours in our room. Aces Cracked table #2. Aces Cracked table #6 etc. It happens a lot.

The other promotion that started today is the Splash the Pot promotion. Every two hours Monday through Friday a table is chosen at random and $50 is dumped on the table before the start of the next hand. I happened to be on the lucky table twice today. The first time I was dealing a short (4) handed NL game. One guy made a large preflop raise, so only two people took a flop. This I understand since $50 is not a huge sum of money in a $2-5 NL game. The second time, however, I was dealing a $2-4 limit game. I dumped $50 on the table prior to the start of the hand and explained why. The game was full. 9 players called the $2 and saw a flop. The 1s folded. Why, I have no idea. When the light went on in his head, he claimed to have folded a winner. I don't know what else I could have done because I made a big deal about the $50 pot sweetener. Yet another case of a player not paying attention.

Our $2-5 no limit buy in has changed from min $100/max $500 to min $200/max $1000. Make a note.

Tuesday is my Friday. The blessed end to another week spent dishing out the cards. Just get me through a few more hours.............

Monday, June 12, 2006

Welcome Home

Thursday found me feeling like a new person after the stay-in-bed episode. I headed out with a handfull of free play/free suff coupons.
Note: It's June 12th and I have not put a penny of my own money into a machine this month. So far so good.
First stop: Tuscany.
I had hit the keno machines there pretty hard after the Saturday Night Card Party a few weeks back. This little foray led to them sending me $40 worth of free play valid three times this month. I played the first free play and cashed out a little more than $20.
On my way in I noticed that their poker room had one three handed game going.
I hit their coffee shop for the 1/4 pound burger and fries special. Price? A whopping $2.50. It wasn't half bad.
By the time I finished eating the poker room was dark with a dealer sitting a dead spread. Yikes.

Off to the Hard Rock for $10 in free slot play and a free $25 tables games bet. I hit the machines first. Betti the Yetti. Yes, that is the name of a slot machine. Incredibly I hit the bonus six times and had $160 in credit. Cash out? Not yet. I turned the $160 into $50 and threw in the towel. I wandered to a $25 min BJ table and layed my coupon on the table. An ace and a ten appeared. Alrighty then, +$75

Next stop Hilton. There I picked up a free CD carry case. Pretty nice for a freebie. The poker room there had two red chip games in progress. My guess would be that they were both low limit NL. I didn't ask.

Finally Palms for $20 in free play. I turned that $20 into nothing and headed to the poker room. I jumped into a $4-6 limit game, played for an hour and cashed out $53 to the good.

Not a bad way to kill a day off.

The poker win has me sitting at 11 wins in 12 outings. The poker gods have been smiling. I dread when that smile turns into rage. It will happen sooner or later. I vote for later.....much later.

Friday night after work I met Linda at the Tropicana. The Trop is an aging property to say the least. It has history, which I can appreciate, but it needs a face lift or an implosion. She was in a NL game. I may be the only person who has let the NL craze sail right by me. Sure, I've played it a few times, but it isn't my favorite game. She racked up and we went looking for food.

We landed at Hooters. The last time I ate there it was in the "hooters" restaurant. Fried wings and fried shrimp. Food poisoning, or something approaching it took it's toll and I vowed never to eat there again. This time we chose the coffee shop.

The waitress introduced herself. It was to be an interesting experience. When she took our drink orders I ordered water and a diet separate glasses, please. She looked at me like I was from another planet and then light, a dim light, went on. Of course, she said. Linda ordered water and coffee with cream. She brought the soda and a black coffee. She asked Linda if she wanted cream. Linda said yes. She then asked Linda if she wanted the cream first, or the water first. Linda said cream. It came and then the waters came and then nothing came for about 45 minutes. During this interval the waitress tried to give us two empty plates--they were supposed to go to a neighboring table for their nachos. Then she tried to give us two plates of food--nope not what we ordered--try the next table. We started to get figity. The waitress went to "check" on the food. It came right out, but judging by the temp of the food my guess would be that it was ready 10-15 minutes ago. The place was not busy. There was no excuse.
When she did finally bring the food, she served me first. I just blurted out "You're serving ME first? There is a lady sitting here. She stated that mine was the first one she picked up. No kidding?
We're forgiving people so she still got a nice tip because she was nice. Not efficient, but still nice.

I could have had 4 orders of burgers and fries at Tuscany for the cost of one burger and fries at Hooters. The burger at Tuscany was as good or better than the Hooters burger.

The new promotions and tournaments begin today (Monday) at the Palms. With the tournament starting at 10 AM I am hopeful that it is finished or nearly finished by the time I hit the clock at 1PM.

Business has been picking up. It's amazing how many of our "old" players have found their way back to us. I don't blame them for trying out the new rooms. Hell, I've done that too.
Make yourself comfortable. I hope you can stay for a spell.
Welcome Home!

Monday, June 05, 2006

If I had a hammer.....

.....and I could find the person responsible for creating computer viruses I would put that hammer to good use.....bashing in their skull and then using it for an ashtray.

Seriously, don't these people have anything better to do with their time?

Anti-virus programs typically work great unless you "invite" the evil in.
OK, I was doing something I shouldn't have been doing, but still......

I just finished a "quick" restore. Back to ground zero. I did manage to pull a hard drive out of an old computer, install it in the current computer and move some important stuff (like 500 or so song downloads) before the restore so it was relatively painless. Just a huge waste of time and energy.


I did end up playing poker, if only briefly, on Thursday night. I played for 35 minutes, won $70, cashed out and headed home. Hit and run.

Friday and Saturday were fairly busy at work. I even worked 8 hours on Friday. Sunday was moderately busy but Monday was s.l.o.w again. I took the EO after 3.5 hours because the computer restoration project was weighing on my mind. Now that I've completed that project I will have to think up another excuse to EO on Tuesday...... I'm sure I can think of something.

***As it turns out, I didn't work at all on Tuesday. I just got out of bed from a 34 hour slumber interrupted only by trips to the bathroom. Not sure what I picked up, but it was not good. I called Robert two hours before I was to be at work and asked him about the possibility of not coming to work. He said it was slow and that I could take the day off. I did, thankfully.
The only good news is that I lost 5 pounds.***

Monday at 8:00AM the quarters were removed from the poker tables at the Palms. Previously we took 10% rake in 25 cent increments up to a max of $3. We took 50 cents on $10 and another 50 cents on $20 for the jack pot drop. We now take $1 JP drop on $12 and a straight 10% in $1 increments for the house rake. This seems like a benefit to the players since before on a $9 pot we took 75 cents for the house where now we don't rake it at all.
While I was dealing a $2-4 game today the player's conversation was about the absence of quarters. One player observed that where he may have previously toked 50 cents on an $8 pot he couldn't justify a $1 toke now. Another player reminded him that previously, on that $8 pot his "gross" take would have been $7.25 (75 cent house rake). If he toked 50 cents, his "net" was $6.75. Under the current structure if he won an $8 pot his "gross" take is $8. If he tokes $1 his "net" is $7. He is 25 cents better off if he toked twice as much as he previously would have. I think a light went on somewhere in his head. At least I HOPE it did. Thankfully there are some players who "get-it" and are not afraid to spread the knowledge around. (Thank you Betty!)
It will be interesting to see how this plays out and how it affects the ole toke box.

An interesting situation presented itself on Monday. I was dealing a $2-4 limit game. It was 3 way action and I burned and turned after only 2 of the players had acted. I have not done this for a long time. I knew what needed to happen and so did the players. I got lazy and did not call the floor. Bingo. High hand jackpot. The player got $116 because I screwed up. Go figure.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Not just another beautiful face

Take a look at Jennifer
It is always a pleasure dealing to you.
Luv ya, Jen!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

How many decks are we using?

Yesterday found me sleeping much later than usual. It was my Saturday and I was taking advantage of it.

When I finally got motivated enough to jump in the shower and face the day I headed out with the intention of playing poker.

One pit stop at the Palms to draw and envelope. Based on my slot play there I am invited to participate in nearly every promotion they have. I reached into the bin and chose and envelope containing a $10 bill. So far so good.

I "invested" the $10 in a keno machine. Bad investment. Since it was my last day to play machines for hopefully a month I decided to ram a few $20s. No luck there either.

I wandered into the poker room with no intention of playing, just getting a feel for the level of activity in the room. I had already chatted with Linda and determined that she was on the "play list". I was headed to Bellagio to play.

Before I could escape the Palms poker room one of our regular players motioned for me to come speak with him. On Tuesday he was scoping out a NL game that I was dealing. I nodded my head toward and empty seat. It was a good game, but I can't say that was the only reason I "invited" him to sit and play. In any case, he took it as a sign that I was encouraging him to sit because the game was good. The seat was empty, that also had some bearing on why I was recruiting players from the box.

He won. He wanted to thank me for gently guiding him to the game. He showed his appreciation by placing 2 red chips in my hand.

I love this town. Have I told you that lately?


I made my way to the Bellagio. Linda knew that I was on my way. As I entered from the parking garage I wandered into the conservatory. The decor had changed since the last time I was there. The picture above is just a limited view of the new lay out. The replica of the Bellagio is complete with lake and dancing fountains. These displays never cease to amaze me and I lingered for awhile. The phone rang. Linda wanted to know where I was. I left the fantasy world behind and headed to the poker room. There was poker to be played.

I jumped into Linda's $4-8 limit game, carved out some early wins and hunkered down. At some point we went to Snacks and had a bite to eat. Back to the grind. Lots of nothing went on and on. The game was great, but I was in a wierd mood, not concentrating, calling a lot, raising hardly at all. Consciously I realize that I am playing like crap, but seemingly powerless to change gears.

At some point Linda got called away from the game. She had to deal. She went off to start a $100-200 blind NL game. She dealt for a few hours and never returned to our game.

My small win vanished and my stack kept shrinking. My original $200 buy-in was gone and I produced another $100 bill. Why, in my current mind set was I continuing to play? Snap out of it!

A new player sat to my right. He related how he was a craps player. Had played a little poker online buy never in a casino. I believed him. He didn't know the first thing about playing BM poker, or poker in general for that matter. He continued to ask questions and I continued to answer them. When several of us informed him that instead of checking out, he could simply check, his answer was "why prolong the agony?". Ignoring the etiquette, it's hard to argue with that. Typically, he was winning. On one particular hand he weathered a storm of raised on every street only to make a gut shot straight on the river. The whole table was in awe. It was funny and he was having fun. Sometimes I am convinced that obliviousness is a virtue.

Another stack or two disappears. I then went on a tear. I got it all back and booked a $67 win. The only notable hand was when I had AA. $20 cap pre-flop with 5 way action. The flop came QQQ. I think I soiled my undies just a little. The game was loose enough that AQ or KQ, despite the cap, was not out of the question. Hell Q2 offsuite was a possibility. In any case the aces held up and I was back in the black. The conversation turned to aces holding up in that situation. My new friend to my right stated that there was only one card I had to worry about. He was correct, but he didn't know it. He was referring the case queen, but in his mind he was talking about ANY generic queen. When I told him that there was a singular queen that I was worried about he looked at me funny and asked if we were only using ONE deck? Are you kidding me? How many decks did you think we were using. Did it LOOK like the dealer was dealing from an 8 deck shoe? Hilarious... But he was having fun and there is something to be said about that simple fact.

My last few wins have been come-from-way-behind wins, but I'll take them. Current streak 9 out of 10 wins. Maybe I'll go play again tonight if I can get motivated to leave the house.

I am sorry about the quality of the picture. I quickly snapped it with my cell camera on the way to the water closet. Linda in the box.

Site Meter Listed on BlogShares