Monday, June 27, 2011

A Chip Down Memory Lane

The 19th annual convention of the Casino Chips and Gaming Tokens Collectors Club has come and gone. When I lived back east, I used to time one of my yearly LV visits to coincide with this convention. After moving to LV I attended for several years. For the last 3 years, despite living here, I didn't make it to the convention. So, this year I took a night off of work to accommodate a midday trip to the Southpoint Casino and I spent some time on the bourse floor. If you have any interest at all in chips, casino related ashtrays-china-matchbooks-swizzle sticks-postcards etc etc you would be amazed when 80-90 dealer tables are set up all loaded with casino stuff. For the first few times it can be a little overwhelming. After you convince yourself that you can't, ever, have one of everything, it takes the edge off.

This year I purchased my very first ivory chip. Antique ivory chips are interesting in many ways. Not the least is that in a custom set containing hundreds of "identical" chips, no two are exactly alike. The scrimshaw work was, of course, painstakingly done by humans so minute differences exist. I chose this one because it displayed my initial. Some debate took place, but the consensus was that the letter was a W. I can live with it either as a W or an M since either one is appropriate.

After I bought the chip, Dr. Myers (a legend in chip circles) told a story about a customer who approached his table at the convention and proclaimed that he would never buy an ivory chip because an elephant had to die in order for the chip to be made. Dr. Myers, straight faced, told the customer that he could verify that this particular elephant had died of old age. The customer bought an ivory chip. Maybe you had to be there, or maybe you have to know Doc, but it WAS funny at the time.

My only other purchases were a few chips low on the $$ scale but not in history. One of the chips is from the Royal Nevada. Most probably have never heard of this place which existed on the Las Vegas strip from 1955-1959. If, however, you have ever been in the huge swimming pool (the largest in Nevada when built by the Royal Nevada)that was behind the Stardust you have been in the Royal Nevada pool since the Stardust acquired and later engulfed what was the Royal Nevada. By the way, if you ever happen to find this chip without the drill hole cancellation, congratulations! because it's worth well over $1,000 today.

The Monte Carlo Resort chip is from 1968 when the resort was located in Laughlin, NV. This place closed in 1977. 19 years later the Monte Carlo that you are all familiar with opened on the Las Vegas Strip. The two California Club chips, from the 1960s, were in play at 101 E. Fremont Street and not at the California Hotel of today located at Ogden/Main.
Although very plain in design, I think these chips have character. How I wish I had been here in LV way back when. The stories that these chips could tell.............

Monday, June 20, 2011

The State of Real Estate in Las Vegas

Zillow, how you make me laugh. It's either laugh or cry, so I am choosing to laugh at the moment. Your latest update puts my condo $57,900. A quick search of identical condos in the same complex shows the first listing as for sale for $49,900 so I'd guess your Zestimate is a little on the high side. I guess the good news is that it only decreased $900 in the last month. Is there a bottom to this madness? Too bad that I paid $177,400 a short 4.5 years ago and that I still owe well over twice your estimate. Aw, good times in Vegas I tell ya.

I read something recently that said over 85% of all homeowners in Las Vegas valley were underwater. I'm not really surprised.

So I have to wonder if the guy who gave me this, ah, thing, as a toke on Saturday night knew that I was SCREWED when it came to my condo or.....

It was the most forward proposition I have ever received while dealing poker.

Take your pick!

I'm still in a laughing mood about it so you can laugh along with me.

Seriously, a condom as a tip.

No, apparently I still haven't seen it all in a poker room.


Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day, Dad.

On this your 46th Father's Day, Thanks for everything!

Remember when you could lift me up and put me on your motorcycle?


Your Favorite Son

Friday, June 17, 2011

Crazy, I say.

I've never really had any complaints about the insurance provided by my employer. It's rather cheap at $12.75 per week and the co-pays are reasonable. I have no idea how this may change since the ownership structure at the Palms is changing/has changed. I've been told that the Caesar's Entertainment insurance package isn't very good, but that is just second and third hand information at the moment.
What I can say is that the whole world of medical coding and billing doesn't make any sense to me. Back in April I made an appointment for a "yearly" physical. I show up, pay my $14 co-pay and visit with the Dr. I mention a knot under my jaw--a blocked salivary gland as it turns out, and ask him what he thinks about Chantix. He writes me a script for Chantix and sends me for blood work. End of story, right?
Not quite. As I have come to find out, a well visit/physical ceases to be a well visit once you mention ANY concerns. The billing department coded their claim to the insurance in such a way that "tobacco use disorder" became the primary reason for the visit. The insurance doesn't pay for "tobacco use disorder" so the doctor's office bills me for $104.
First of all, I don't have a disorder, I smoke. Who the hell determined that to be a disorder? Secondly, why would the billing office code that as the primary reason for the visit knowing that no insurance company is going to pay for the visit? The nice lady in billing said they will recode and resubmit and that should take care of it......
BTW, I have decided that continuing to smoke poses less of a risk that taking Chantix. I talked to pharmacists and nurses who all said that they would NOT take Chantix. Other options such as the "patch" may be a consideration in the future.
I had an interesting night at work last night.
Except for the time when I dealt a bad-beat, I received my personal best tip for dealing a hand of cards. The way it happened baffled me, so here is the rest of the story:
A player that I recognized but hadn't seen in perhaps a year comes in to play.
I ask him where he has been and remark that it has been a LONG time since he played in the room. He goes on a nice run while I am in the box and he tokes nicely. On my next down at that table, we repeat the run and the nice tokes. The next time I am at that table he loses a monster pot which puts a HUGE dent in his stack. After that hand he gets up to leave......and..... pushes me the remainder of his chips.
The single largest tip I have ever received (ignoring one bad-beat hand) came from the player who LOST the hand!
'Splain that one Lucy.
Brad, Simon, Stephen we miss you at the Palms! WSOP time isn't the same without you.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Wow! is still functional?

Things change, things stay the same.

Since my last visit here we have a new poker room manager at the Palms--Joe Viator. So far, so good. He's changed some rules and added an "Action Aces" promotion which has been well received. The morning session results in a few games while the evening session packs the room. Monday through Friday 7AM-11AM and 2PM-7PM if you lose with AA you win double the pot up to $200. This approach to aces cracked seems infinitely better that the plain Jane scenario where the players telegraphed their pocket aces, a handfull called and then they checked, checked checked hoping to crack the aces. This version encourages action and the $200 amount has a bearing on even NL play.

The addition of daily tournaments has yet to gain any traction. Maybe that will change now that the two or three people who will read this post will now know about the tournaments.

Diamonds, obviously, aren't forever. After the better part of 9.5 years the diamond flush promotion has ended.

The Pokerati mixed game seems well established and is now likely to go two or three days a week other than the normal Thursday night game.

Other promos are in the works, but not yet official yet so I'll not list them here.

There is a new "sample" felt on table 1. The picture doesn't do it justice. It looks AWESOME. Another trial is the new rail. For those players who hated the "racetrack" around our tables, rejoice. This rail is raised like our old tables with the addition of a bead between the felt and rail that prevents cards from sliding under the rail.

For the next two months we will be running sats for the Annie Duke/Federated tournamant that will be held in, I think, August. (I'm too lazy to look it up right now.)

Business at work has, generally, increased significantly under the new administration. That combined with the WSOP being held across the street should keep us hopping for the next two months. Still, working in a poker room is so unpredictable. Last week I worked overtime three times. This week I worked overtime one day and worked a total of 1 hour on another.


Site Meter Listed on BlogShares