Casinos: Places where large sums of cash are won and lost all based on the risk you’re willing to take. The American Dream in all it’s glory. And while there are a lot of different places you can legally gamble in this country, you will tend to see some of the same types of people in almost every casino you enter. From the Bellagio in Las Vegas to Harrah’s in New Orleans to the Tropicana in A.C., these are a few of the people you’ll probably encounter either at the tables or on your third trip to the ATM.
1 The old lady playing slots
She’ll be dressed in a floral shirt and one of those neon visors that say either “Las Vegas” or “Branson, Missouri” on it and will be equipped with a fanny pack full of nickles that would put the Dept of Treasury to shame. And she’ll sit in front of a row of slot machines and carefully feed change into each individual machine and pull the lever over and over again with her little bucket for winnings. Does she come out a winner? Hard to tell, but she certainly gets her money’s worth in entertainment value and free drinks. I hope she wins that Viper.
2 The guy who just lost a bundle
Ever see that guy who seems to be wandering the casino floor aimlessly; he looks like a lost puppy dog who’s just seen a ghost? That’s probably the guy who just took out a second mortgage on his house to play one more hour at the baccarat table and from the looks of it, he’s probably going to moving himself into a YMCA next week. It’s always terrible to see and he serves as a warning to other patrons of just how quickly you can lose a wallet full of cash and have your dreams of wealth come crashing down in the buzz of slot machines and flashing neon lights. Sometimes he’s the guy looking aimlessly at his reflection in the elevator banks and sometimes he’s the guy at the corner of the casino bar softly crying into his gin and tonic. Either way, he is not the guy you want to be when leaving a casino.
3 The guy who has no idea what he’s doing
The person is always like Peter Griffin in that clip from Family Guy– “Sir, you have 20. Hit me. 21. Hit me. That‘s 30. Hit me…” He or she is the bane of the guy sitting at the end of the table reading “The World’s Greatest Blackjack Book” and meticulously betting according to how the book says to play each hand. And while not everyone will like this person, he or she is obviously there to have a good time and hopefully win some money and get a little tipsy in the process. And that’s what casinos are for aren’t they?
4 The cocktail waitress who has seen it all before
There’s usually one in almost every casino you go to. The woman that wants nothing more than for people order a drink and leave her alone. Probably because she’s taken on more hits by drunken gamblers than a Ted Williams Louisville Slugger; she looks a bit haggard and somewhat beleaguered by the years of smoke filled rooms and years of obnoxious patrons grabbing her ass. She’s just trying to get through her shift with enough tips to make the rent this month and only wants to know what kind of beer you’d like. Some stories she could tell would probably run shivers down your spine, but she doesn’t have the patience to make conversation. So just tip her and have your drink order ready before you get into an ugly scene that you most likely want no part of.
5 The Whale
Most gamblers would have a better chance of seeing a whale in the wild than they would seeing a whale in a casino (unless Steve Wynn opened an aquatic themed hotel). They are the big spenders who have special tables in the back reserved for people of their own unique economic status. They don’t have the time to gamble for mere dollars; they need a stack full of chocolate chips and a hospitable dealer. They could win or lose millions in just a few minutes, but the perks of large sum gambling are that they don’t have to sit next to the mortal gamblers, who live and die with every roll of dice. They can play alone and let it ride on red without anyone bothering them or getting in the way of their hot streak.
6 The Cooler
This person is part urban legend and part gambler’s imagination; a “cooler” is supposedly a dealer who comes in to kill the mojo when a table is hot. If you’ve ever seen a dealer on the ride to Bust City where everyone around you is consistently winning, a change in a dealer can often be a major disruption to the flow of a table. While we all understand that the order of the cards aren’t changing, the mere fact that a streak of good luck has been broken can often cause a gambler to feel that a new dealer is bringing bad juju. But, come on! Sometimes the casinos have to be doing this on purpose, right? We were winning over here till you showed up! I’m going to a different table…
7 The huge bouncer
He’s there and he does not want to hear or put up with any of your drunken antics. You want to sing “More than a Feeling” while spilling beer all over a table, then you are going to have to do it in your kitchen at home. And this gentleman is going to help you get there; even if he has to drag your drunken-ass out to the curb by your ankles. He will not stand for you throwing-up on fellow patrons, passing-out on the roulette wheel, or slapping the table and screaming “MONKEY” (trust me on that last one). You may see him going into the casino, but chances are you won’t see him again until it’s too late and unlike a washing machine, he does not have a gentle cycle.
8 The guy who doesn’t care about losing money
Sometime there is a guy (it could be a woman, but usually not) who just goes into casinos to specifically to piss people off. He throws around cash like it’s nothing and will give you a hard time when you hit a rough streak at the craps table. It’s not about the money to him, it’s about making everyone around him feel small and miserable. He’s the Donald Trump of casino douche bags and like Trump, it’s all “LOOK AT ME!” He wants to be seen and heard because mommy didn’t pay enough attention to him as a child. Where is that bouncer when you really need him?
9 The drunk guy that seems to be lost
Sometimes you’ll see a guy that is just wasted out of his mind and stumbling through the maze of slot machines like someone who has just had a flash grenade go off in front of them. It’s 4 AM and he’s mumbling something about losing a boat load of money playing Keno at the Luxor…PLEASE, will you just help me get back to my room. I’d greatly appreciate it and thank you in advance.