The Gambling Bug

Well here is a subject I can speak about that I actually know something about. I spent the last years of the 70’s and the early 80’s in Las Vegas.

I loved every second of it, and I hated every second of it.

I succumbed to the gambling bug which has bit so many.

I arrived in the glitzy city with eyes wide open and the absolute VERY WORST THING that could possibly happen to me happened.

My girlfriend was working in one of the many small strip casinos which carved their little niches among the giants: MGM Grand, Desert Inn, Flamingo, Caesar’s Palace, Stardust, and the others. She was a change girl, providing rolls of silver dollars to eager slot players. I went to see her on her first night of work and she told me that she had been working all night and that two machines seemed to be paying out way more than any of the others. I bought fifty silver dollars. In the first machine I played, I spun the very first roll and was rewarded with $500.00 for my $5.00 investment. Twelve boilermakers later, I stumbled out with $8400 in my pocket. I never played slots again, and I really don’t know why after that crazy run.

I just did not have the patience to sit down and try to count cards and play Blackjack, because no matter what anybody tells you, it is the only surefire “system” that works.

Every time.

I could never master it, so I just stopped trying.

I played baccarat when I was high on drugs, but I still managed to stand up from the table a winner.

My game was craps.

The very first time I walked into a major hotel-casino was into the opulent Caeser’s Palace on the Strip. I walked up to a craps table there, and I told the stickman (the dealer who controls the dice and the bets placed on the table) that I had one-thousand dollars and knew nothing of craps. I told him to instruct me what and how much to bet as if it were his money.

I went home with three grand, AFTER tipping the guy 600.00. I spent my entire first year in Las Vegas learning the game (aka losing money) until, one day, I started winning. Like any gambler, I could be on top one second, only to fail in the next, no matter what “system” you think you have devised. I speak of some of my Las Vegas gambling antics in my book, EMOTIONS: Not Your Mama’s ABCs! but several did not make it in due to personal embarassment and/or legal ramifications.

After four years of the ups and downs, I started doing something I never tried before. Instead of my betting strategy being based on numbers and odds, I started betting with or against a player’s roll based on the player. Newbie? Self taught? Short term bets in play. Higher odds like Hi-Lo, and box bets (for at least one hit). Don’t place for long roll. Thrower will give up dice soon. Person who is asking for help from one of the table employees? Bet on them consistently. Little old lady who has absolutely NO CLUE WHATSOEVER what she is doing?

Bet on her EVERY TIME.

Keno is a pretty cool game when you are too drunk to play anything except the in-bar electronic slot machines.

I was very lucky at roulette for some strange reason. Just like in Keno, I always played the same numbers and groups of numbers.

I know I sound old when I say I miss the Las Vegas of old; before it became another Disneyland. A place where you could drink too much and leave your car parked on the Strip and just walk away (when you discovered it wasn’t your car).

Stay well.


Published by maddogg09

I am an unmotivated genius with an extreme love for anything that moves the emotional needles of our lives.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: