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Best of John G. Brokopp

Gaming Guru

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A Final Look at Good Casino Manners

15 January 2002

Today I conclude my series on proper casino etiquette by taking a look at how good manners apply to the game of craps:

1. Craps, more than any other casino game, is filled with superstition. Never, EVER, talk about the number "seven" or even cheer for it on the comeout roll. It is a word that quite simply is not said or talked about. If craps players could read minds, it's also something that is never even thought about. That's why it is referred to as "big red" or "red" by anyone who wishes to play it as a proposition bet.

2. Keep your hands out of the pit when the stickman is ready to push the dice to the shooter. Dealers are often heard to admonish players with the warning "hands high." If the dice happen to hit your hand and seven out, you'll probably wish you were never born.

3. Don't toss in chips and call instructions to the dealer haphazardly. The dealers take instructions from players in order. They have plenty to do, calculate, and think about. You'll get your timing down once you become familiar with things. The dealers will let you know if you speak out of turn. Many experienced dealers will even anticipate your moves once they pick up on your playing method.

4. Learn the proper method for tossing in chips. If you throw them wrong, they'll roll all over the layout and create havoc for the stickman and dealers. Hold the chip(s) between your thumb and index finger and "spin" them, onto the layout. They won't roll and in many cases the stickman will catch them in midair and set your wager.

5. Don't be a table hog. There should be room for seven or eight players on each half of the table. If you're spread out all over the place with elbows resting in the rails on either side of you, you are being inconsiderate to others who may want to join the game.

6. Don't be afraid to tip courteous and helpful dealers, especially when things are going well. There are many ways to tip craps dealers: Proposition bets, place bets, pass bets with odds, etc. If you want to make a dollar bet on the hard eight for both you and the dealers, just toss in the chips and announce to the stickman a "2-way on the hard eight." He'll know to position your chip in the appropriate place and place the dollar dealer chip in the center. You can make a line bet for the dealers yourself (if you lay odds for them they gleefully announce "dealers have shoes"), or even a place bet by announcing your intentions to the dealer. Dealers always love to be "in the game."

Read my complete set of good etiquette rules for all the casino games in the October issue of Midwest Gaming & Travel magazine (www.midwestgamingandtravel.com).

CASINO NEWS: If you've ever been involved in the traffic and pedestrian jams that can occur on the famed Las Vegas Strip, your aggravation will soon be over. Ground was recently broken for the construction of a $165 million extension of the city's monorail system. The nonprofit Las Vegas Monorail company expects to complete the three-mile extension of the system from Bally's to the Sahara by January of 2004. Stops will be placed near the Flamingo Hilton, Las Vegas Convention Center, Harrah's, the Imperial Palace, and the Las Vegas Hilton.

The competition is fierce among casinos for having the most liberal player's club rewards, but they all could learn something from the On-Track Player's Reward Club in place at Sportsman's Park Race Track in Cicero, Ill. Whereas the real value of one point earned per dollar played with a player's card at some casinos is as little as a tenth of a cent, every point earned per dollar played at Sportsman's has a value of 2-1/2 cents. With double point promotions on in-state races it zooms up to five cents. Are you listening casino marketing directors?

John G. Brokopp

John G. Brokopp's gaming column appears in Chicago Sun Times (Chicago, Illinois), The Times (Northwest Indiana), The Quad City Times (Davenport, Iowa), The Courier News (Elgin, Illinois), The Gazette (Southwest Suburban Chicago) and Senior Wire (Denver, CO). He's also a regular contributor to The Colorado Gambler, Midwest Gaming & Travel, Casino Player and Strictly Slots. John possesses 28 years of experience as a professional handicapper, publicist, freelance writer, and casino gaming correspondent. He is also the author of two very popular books, The Insider’s Guide to Internet Gambling and Thrifty Gambling.

Books by John G. Brokopp:

> More Books By John G. Brokopp

John G. Brokopp
John G. Brokopp's gaming column appears in Chicago Sun Times (Chicago, Illinois), The Times (Northwest Indiana), The Quad City Times (Davenport, Iowa), The Courier News (Elgin, Illinois), The Gazette (Southwest Suburban Chicago) and Senior Wire (Denver, CO). He's also a regular contributor to The Colorado Gambler, Midwest Gaming & Travel, Casino Player and Strictly Slots. John possesses 28 years of experience as a professional handicapper, publicist, freelance writer, and casino gaming correspondent. He is also the author of two very popular books, The Insider’s Guide to Internet Gambling and Thrifty Gambling.

Books by John G. Brokopp:

> More Books By John G. Brokopp