(Reprinted from our Message board)
Is That a Stack of Chips in Your Pocket…or Are You Just Glad to See Me?
Have you ever walked up to a craps table and noticed that one of your friends or associates is there; so you immediately engage them in conversation…only to find out that they are the shooter?
Does saying, “Oops, sorry to throw you off of your game…gee, I hope that 7-Out wasn’t because I just bear-hugged you, slapped you on the back, and commented on how much weight you’ve lost since the last time we saw each other” help to ease the pain of the blunder?
I read an awful lot of Trip Reports where people talk about the chit-chat they carry on during their own hand…or ones they have with a skilled shooter when he is shooting.
Sometimes it’s something innocuous like, “Wow, the dice are behavin’ well tonight”, or “Keep it goin’ bud, you are doin’ great”.
Sometimes it’s a little more detailed like, “Your right-die is flipping off-axis as soon as it hits the backwall, you might try re-aligning your third-finger a bit; oh and the two dice are starting to split in flight, so you should ease off on your thumb-pressure as well.”
Sometimes there’s a bit of an impatient reminder that one of the non-shooters bets haven’t been hit yet, or there’s gentle encouragement to repeat the PL-Point and soon because the person doing the talking has finally worked his way up to full-Odds .
Sometimes it’s just idle chatter about the weather or nervous banter about needing the cocktail waitress ‘cause; “We’re sobberin’ up over heeeere!”
Let me ask you this:
What is the purpose of ANY conversation you are having with a skilled shooter while he is shooting?
Is it to calm him down and get his mind off of the game?
Is it to rev him up and get his mind onto the game?
Is it just nervous chatter from you to fill the lull in conversation while he is trying to make money?
Is it because you are excited and you want him to be just as excited as you are?
Again, ask yourself, what is the purpose of ANY conversation you are having with a skilled shooter while he is shooting?
Most skilled shooters complain about the fact that it is hard for them to maintain any kind of throw-to-throw-to-throw consistency let alone any kind of reliable hand-to-hand-to-hand performance.
How much of that do you think is attributable to the meaningless conversation that goes on between many of those throws?
How much of that is attributable to conversations or comments that the shooter himself starts up between throws?
If you are the kind of shooter who can unreel a steady stream of 20-roll hands while reciting Hamlet’s soliloquy, juggling ashtrays and doing a dead-on impression of Henny Youngman…all at the same time and all without breaking a sweat; then go ahead and yuk it up with the crew and your table-mates.
However, if you can’t do all of that, especially the steady stream of 20-roll hands part; then shut up and concentrate on your shooting.
If you are the kind of player who doesn’t like to make money, and doesn’t like to see friends or associates win money either; then simply continue distracting the shooter as much as possible when he is shooting.
If you are the shooter, and you think chest-bumping and high-fiving is the way to celebrate every PL-Point; then chances are you won't be making many more of them. The consolation of course is that the only thing the casino-radar is going to detect is that you are just another dicesetter-in-a-male-moomoo who loses as much as everyone else.
When it comes to making money off of skilled-shooting, you have to focus on each and every throw as if it is THE throw.
When that throw is finished; you have to focus on the next throw because that one is now THE throw, and so on.
If you want to talk to the shooter who is in the middle of what looks like a pretty decent roll; how about waiting until it’s over. Almost anything you have to say can wait until then.
Likewise, if you are the shooter, any idle comments or movements you make that don’t contribute to your game ARE NOT NEEDED. They just divert your focus…and your potential profit.
So whether it’s just idle chatter, nervous banter, near-worthless chit-chat, or to find out where the gang is having dinner tonight…it can probably wait until this hand is over.
Shunning the Local Pro’s to Hang Out with Fellow Amateurs
I’ve seen a trend lately where small ad-hoc groups of shooters will meet in various gaming-markets for informal weekend get-togethers, and deliberately shun any group-shoot hook-ups with the local pro’s and semi-pro’s.
This may be based on the desire to keep things on the light side of things and not so seriously focused on making a profit (as many of the local D-I’s prefer).
It is certainly understandable that the camaraderie of playing together with an out-of-town group of like-minded guys you haven’t seen in awhile will take precedence over the actual task of making money.
Though the idea of making money is often the tacit sub-text of most pre-trip discussions; the actual rare occurrence of a trip-profit doesn't provide frequent enough relief from the customary, “Well, we all lost money, but a good time was had by all” chorus.
The reason I even mention this is because of what we just talked about a moment ago. Specifically, the barely-contained giddiness that often accompanies these once-in-awhile get-togethers; is also often accompanied by a degree of group-participant shooter-interruptions that you wouldn’t normally expect in your home-casino.
The idea of intentionally snubbing local pro’s and semi-pro’s who have a more precise up-to-the-second lay of the land in terms of optimal playing conditions in a wide, wide range of casinos, under the guise of ‘preserving’ the middle-aged frat-boy party atmosphere (and having to act with a somewhat higher level of behaved don’t-shit-on-your-own-doorstep comportment); often has the unintended consequence of running counter to the stated goal of making a profit (despite vehement protestations of saying you “really and truly” want to).
To my mind, if the trade-off in hooking up with local pro’s or semi-pro’s only requires a slightly higher level of common-sense respect for preserving their backyard-casino shooting opportunities, but offers a much higher level of D-I earning-power; then the exchange is worth it.
I mean, if you keep the tourist-in-a-male-moomoo behavior to a minimum; you may find that the local guys know a lot more than just where the best craft-brewed premium lagers are poured...and your profit-results may be well worth the effort.
Good Luck and Good Skill at the Tables…and in Life.
The Mad Professor
Copyright © 2008