Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Ode to a Gemini

Greetings from Atlantic City, where my wife and I are spending a well-deserved mini vacation for her upcoming birthday.

I had a very interesting time tonight and met a young lady who definitely caught my attention. No, not that way! I was sitting in the Trump Plaza hotel at the $1 blackjack table, which is something new that has come about in these hard economic times. I was profoundly grateful for it, and for even geting a seat at the table at all since there was a line. I finally got a seat and felt like a whale my huge stack of white chips. (NOTE: For those of you who don't know, the white chips are $1.)

Anyway, the seat to my right opens up and this young lady sits down. She was so excited and nervous that it was obvious that it was her first time gambling. She assured us that she was indeed 21, but the pit boss came right over and checked her ID. I have never seen anyone more enthusiastic to be carded. She didn't realize much of what was going on but these tables are defined as "friendly" and great for beginners. She was bright enough to accept her ignorance and try at this table first.

 In true Gemini style this lady was a non-stop flood of information. After she had been sitting to my right for less than five minutes I already knew her last name and her birthdate including year. She was so insistent about ordering a drink that she tried to order it from the blackjack dealer and the pit boss before she was told that the cocktail waitress would be coming around eventually. By her own admission she had never played blackjack for money, but she was more excited to be laying her money down than any of us-once she realized that the dealer would not take money from her hands. I explained to her that the cameras were watching everything and that the dealer had to show she was giving the right change for the right amount of money, and the idea that there were thousands of cameras watching us in the casino made her uneasy. I told her to watch "Casino" with Robert DeNiro and I got the impression that she would. I probably should have told her that they're not supposed to break your hands or threaten you with circular saws, even if you do get caught cheating. But hey...some things she can figure out on her own. :)

 At this point I'm down a little money and I can't catch a good hand to save my life. Gemini girl wins her first two hands and is over the moon. She starts talking about beginners's luck and then loses a few. But she was trying to learn more about the game the whole time, and having a good time doing so. She must have asked about 5 times when her drink was going to show up...she was quite insistent about that as I recall. When she did finally get her drink , it turns out the waitress got her what I had been drinking instead of her order, which was a screwdriver. I graciously offer to take the drink off the waitress' hands--that's just the kind of guy I am--and Gemini girl ended up with a Cape Codder, which she readily accepted. She still wanted the screwdriver anyway and eventually she did indeed get one. Someone did try to explain to her that while the drinks were technically free, the idea that the casino would want to have her drink more and keep her happy and gambling didn't register.

 She was with us for maybe 30 minutes total, dropped about $20 and had two free drinks. But she had a great time. When she got up she was quickly replaced by a guy whose energy was really funky; something was definitely up with him, and almost like the Universe was trying to tell me something, Jen showed up to check on me. I cut my losses and left the bad energy guy to head back up to the room and grab some sleep, which I will do as soon as I'm done this blog.

 Anyway, this blog is a shout out to Gemini girl, wherever you are. OK, likely she is trying to chat up a bartender for free drinks as we speak, but she picked up a lot about blackjack in a short amount of time and clearly enjoyed herself. That is truly what having fun is all about. You made my evening much more interesting, and for that I'm grateful.

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