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Bad moments caused by bad players

By Frank Scoblete


Most table games, most times, run smoothly and players have little to complain about except maybe some bad luck. The casino experience for most players for most times is a pleasant one and when good luck hits them, well, it can be a great time.

Smart players over time will have less “bad luck” than poor players since they will keep the house edge at the games they play lower than poorer players, or they will play fewer decisions. This is a wise given for casino play: more decisions equal bad; fewer decisions equal good. Low house edge equal good; high house edge equal bad.

Still there are moments when things are not going well, either because of mistakes players make or mistakes other players make in how they play the games. Here are a few annoyances.


If you are a blackjack player you have probably run into this person on a number of occasions; he or she is the big mouth who wants to give everyone advice on how to play their hands or he or she wants to criticize how the other players just played their hands causing Mr./Ms. Big Mouth to lose at the table.

The Big Mouths can make a pleasant blackjack game a terror on each and every hand. That is certainly not fun for those the Big Mouth terrorizes.

Interestingly enough, the Big Mouth often does not know the proper way to play many hands and also adheres to some of the silly superstitions of the game, such as third base dictating which card the dealer will get as if the cards are arranged in a specific order even after being shuffled thoroughly.

I have at times asked Big Mouths to tell all of us at the table what card is coming up for the dealer so we can make our decision a proper one. No Big Mouth can actually do that and they generally remain silent after such a challenge.


The proper way to play blackjack is to use the basic strategy which is the computer-derived method for the play of each player’s hand against the up card of the dealer. That strategy will keep the house edge low, around one-half percent (give or take).

Secondly, blackjack players who look to play head-to-head against the dealer are asking for trouble since they can play over 100 hands per hour. That is not good. A lot of decisions in a low house-edge game can still hurt. Basic strategy players should look to play at full tables or nearly full tables to have the number of hands they play reduced significantly.


Not everyone is a Bill Burr or Jim Gaffigan or Dave Chappelle or any one of a number of great comedians, but some casino players think they are. Okay, that’s fine; entertain your put-upon friends with your drunken routines and insights, but please don’t belabor those of us at the tables with you.

Drunks think they are funny. Unfunny drunks think they are hilariously funny. Completely sotted idiots think they are comic geniuses. In private, so be it; with the rest of us at a table game? Please go away! Nothing ruins fun as much as some sotted someone who thinks he’s funny and won’t leave the stage.


In roulette, one of the most annoying things is someone who knocks over someone else’s pile of chips on a number – time and time again. There are some types of roulette players who think they are the only ones at the game and their aggressive movements can often cause chaos at a crowded table. Relax, the dealer will give everyone enough time to place their bets; so slow down. Roulette is not a race.

In craps, you have foolish players who throw bets onto the layout when a shooter is about to roll those bones (dice).This is a serious breach of decorum and can irritate your fellow craps players, sometimes to no end. Once the shooter has the dice in their hands, time for betting is over. Oh, and don’t hang your hands over the railing.

In baccarat you have many superstitious players who sometimes make a fuss if they think you are winning and that they are losing because you are winning. You will note that many baccarat tables do not have the number 4 spot listed on the layout because of such superstitious players. I had one woman once who walked around a table and yelled at me because she was losing and I was winning.

Now that’s crazy if you ask me. Such superstitious people can truly ruin a fun game for the other players. Please to all of them; keep your lunatic ideas to yourself. The rest of us don’t want to be involved.

Okay, there are some terrible moments at the table games that can occur now and again. But remember this; you are not glued to a chair at the casino. You can always move to another table or even another casino.

All the best in and out of the casinos!



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