Take the bad with the good – and quit your complaining
By Frank Scoblete
Here she comes! Here she comes! Does she see me? Oh, no, she’s heading right for me. Her bloodshot eyes bead right into my eyes. There is no escaping her now. She is almost on top of me! Oh, please, please someone save me!
“Do you know, Frank, do you know, do you know, that I have not won all day? This place is fixed… fixed, you hear me. Those machines are rigged, rigged. I don’t know why I come down here. Why? This is all a sham, a scam, why don’t you tell that to your readers? No one can beat the slots. No one. The casino has all the luck.”
Oh, no, it’s him. He thinks the gods of Olympus have a personal vendetta against him. He thinks of himself as Job in the bible. And he has me cornered.
He opens a pack of cigarettes in a non-smoking area of the casino. “I’m telling you,” he puffs. “If I didn’t have bad luck I would have no luck.” (Cough! Cough!) “I can’t win a thing. I get up a little and then God punishes me for those little wins and He takes them away from me. I should quit,” he inhales deeply. “But I just can’t because I know I might win someday if the Lord turns his attention to making me happy. Is it too much to ask to be happy?”
Why did my wife the Beautiful AP invite this harridan to dinner with us? Why shackle me with her? Here she goes—“I play those machines by the café and you know what? I always lose. That’s right. I have complained to the management and you know what the guy said—and what gall he had—he said why don’t I go to another area of the casino and play there. Harrumph! Do you think I could sue the casino because I am a loser? That I am—all the time—a loser? There must be a law protecting people like me from…”Yaba, yaba, yaba. On and on and on she goes. She almost never takes a breath so it is hard to jump in and change the topic.
I am sure most of you have met versions of these types of players. They are always miserable. They seem to play in order to lose and then they enjoy constant complaining. You wonder why they even bother coming to the casinos if such an experience is always negative for them. What’s worse is that they enjoy complaining to you! They inundate you with their tales of woe. They never let up. They are like bad guests at a party who corner you and regale you with their idiotic ideas. You can’t get rid of them. “Yes, the world is flat. You didn’t know that did you Frank?”
Look, there is no god on Mt Olympus thinking, “Oh, let me screw Charlie while he plays the slots.” I would think a god has more important things to do than worry about whether Charlie wins or loses on the slot machines. Too bad Charlie doesn’t realize that. Too bad Charlie doesn’t realize that you have no interest in talking to him about his misery.
In fact with all the above complainers—real complainers I have actually run across—I prefer not having them on the same planet on which I live. I have recommended them to join Richard Branson on his expedition to Mars. I’ll even fill out the forms for them.
Slot players—and all casino players—have to know that the casino has built in edges on all the games. Just about all casino players (except for those rare advantage players at blackjack and craps) will ultimately lose. That is a given. If a player can’t accept that the house has the edge he should not play. It is as simple as that.
Moaning about one’s luck is annoying to those to whom the moaner moans. Life is full of sad things without burdening others with your losses.
Casino gambling, whether it be on the slot machines or at the tables, is a fun endeavor, if it is treated as a fun endeavor. If the player takes his play too seriously; if the player actually thinks he has a chance to win bundles over time then he is fooling himself. Yes, there are times when those machines hit and hit and send one’s heart soaring but sadly there are players who have just not experienced such glee. Or they have and they have forgotten it. It makes no difference. What makes the difference is how one handles one’s defeats. It is much easier to be a good winner than a good loser. Sadly, bad losers are usually bad winners too.
Perhaps we should have a course in schools that explains how to handle the good things and the bad things life—and in our case the casinos—so we have a good grasp on proper behavior. Either that or get the spaceship ready for the Mars expedition
Frank Scoblete’s recent books are I Am a Dice Controller and I Am a Card Counter. Both available from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, Kindle and at your local bookstore. To celebrate his quarter century of casino playing Frank will send you a free copy of his book The Virgin Kiss. Just email him at email@example.com with your address.