Have you ever been so confused that your brain kind of shuts down? You can’t come up with the words to ask questions about it (I’m looking at you Inception). You can’t even fake it and copy what the dude next to you is doing (I’m looking at you Electric Slide). The only reaction you can muster is….
Well that is how I felt at the table games at the casinos outside of San Francisco. On a Casino Guy/Wing Woman anniversary trip, we hit up a few casinos in between doing all the touristy shit – don’t judge me. When was the next time I was going to be out here with an afternoon to kill? That was excuse enough for me to hit the road from San Fran proper out to Artichoke Joe’s in San Bruno and Lucky Chances in Colma.
As soon as I stepped into both of these places, the initial reaction was “This is normal. Let’s find a seat at a table.” My initial reaction was wrong. The blackjack tables said Blackjack on them. The three card poker tables said Three Card Poker on them. There were cards dealt. There was a dealer. That’s kind of where the similarities ended.
First, the exchange of money is odd. There is a dude sitting behind the dealer. This dude I could only assume was a “banker”. This dude paid out big hands. This dude made change when change was needed. When you cash out, he gave you a rack without coloring your chips. I was confused. I still don’t know when this person got involved and when they didn’t. One banker guy had a haircut like Friar Tuck. When this asshole’s dome is the least perplexing thing in your afternoon of gambling, you know you’ve stepped into some shit.
Then, when you ante, the table takes a vig from everyone. It’s an entry fee to have the honor of sitting at a table game. Not only are you participating in a game with odds heavily against you, you now have to pay to play. Yikes. Talk about stickin’ it to your players. Reminds me of a scene from Training Day. Hopefully it doesn’t need closed captioning….
I am still traumatized by this. Playing heads up against a dealer in blackjack is very expensive. The vig adds up quick. Also, I honest to God have no idea if I was paid out properly, no idea if I won or lost. My brain spun so hard from this, even Wing Woman was concerned for my well being.
“I’ve seen Casino Guy at his best and worst. I’ve never seen a human rattled like he was at Artichoke Joe’s. It was a highlight of this anniversary trip. Oh yeah, Casino Guy is a real romantic.” Wing Woman
Even as a seasoned gambler, I was unable to catch up with what was going on at what is ultimately my second home (to see me reference table games as a second for me was an eye opening experience). As soon as I saw Friar Tuck saddle up behind the dealer and start handing out chips, I was toast. Word to the wise, get to know the room before you toss your money in the mix. If you don’t, you could end up like your boy Casino Guy – broke and shaken like booty in a Wreckx-N-Effect video.
God speed out there fellow gamblers.
P.S. Full disclaimer, I was out in San Fran many years ago. They could have changed things since. If so, I hope you laughed at the story. If they haven’t, now you know, and knowing is half the battle. Yo Joe!!!!