Quick Las Vegas Visit Planned

Each year I attend the Macworld Conference and Expo in San Francisco, CA. On the flight home, we try and schedule a long layover in Las Vegas, NV. This year is no different. I’ll be landing in Vegas on Friday, January 18th at 10:16pm and flying out on Saturday, January 19th at 9:25am. The past two years we’ve played low limit hold’em at the MGM, but I think we are going to try Caesar’s this year. We’re looking for a card room that will stay relatively busy during the time we’ll be playing, so if you have other suggestions, let me know.

I think the last time I played poker was last year on the Vegas layover. My game is going to be a little rusty!

Ocean's 13

Ocean's 13I really enjoyed Ocean’s Eleven when it came out and thought Ocean’s Twelve was good too. So when I saw Ocean’s 13 was next in line I knew I’d have to see it.

Went last night with Tom because it was too damn hot to do anything else around the house or outside. We both enjoyed the movie and I’ll add it to my DVD collection when it comes out. The movie has the usual cast of characters played by George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Andy Garcia, Don Cheadle, Bernie Mac, and Al Pacino to name a few. I was surprised to see Julia Roberts missing from the 3rd film.

Ocean’s 13 shares the same kind of film-making as the first two movies and tries to keep you guessing what exactly is going on. This movie was quite a bit easier to figure out than the previous two and I actually saw quite a few things coming. If you enjoyed the first two, you’ll enjoy this one as well though. Very good for the 3rd movie in a series. I give it a solid B+.

Poker At the Taj

It’s almost 5 a.m. and we just got back from Atlantic City! I played a $100 poker tournament at the Taj Mahal and I lasted just over an hour and a half. I won hands with QQ, suited AK, and then I had to go all-in with suited A7 because my blinds were coming around and I had a short stack. The guy who called me had AA.

After checking out the boardwalk and eating, I played $2/$4 limit poker (again at the Taj) for about 5 hours. It was a blast. I think I got Lindsay hooked on gambling…she came back with nothing more than 3 pennies left in her purse, after being ahead by around $500!

Update: I just wrote a nice little review of the Taj’s poker room, but it disappeared when I went to post and the browser’s back button didn’t seem to work. I’ll try to rewrite it later.

Beat Me Up!

Happy 4th of July! It’s raining here in good old northern Michigan so it looks like we’ll be stuck in the house all day. Dad is deep frying a turkey and we might have a little Texas Hold’em tournament on Isaac’s new poker table. He built it with one of his friends and it’s pretty sweet. I’ll post a picture on Monday night. Other than that I’m going to relax.

Last night I went to the casino with Mom and Dad. I played $5-$10 Texas Hold’em for almost 9 hours. I’ve been on a streak of bad cards and bad beats for a few weeks now (playing online) and it didn’t stop last night. I held JJ twice and both times AA came on the flop. I flopped a straight and someone backdoored a full house. I finally hit a flush and the board showed trips when the turn and river brought two more 8s to give someone a full house. Each of these pots were well over $100.

The cards just weren’t on my side. I did flop a set when I held AA. I was getting reraised by someone across the table, so it was a nice pot. The table was loose, but I just couldn’t get the cards. Dad won about as much as I lost, so I guess you could say we came out even though we don’t share bankrolls. Oh well, it was fun, which is what counts, because I wasn’t playing with money I couldn’t afford to lose.

To Tip Or Not To Tip…The Dealer

Ever played poker in a casino? Do you tip the dealer after a winning hand? Do you do it every time?

For some reason poker etiquette expects you to. I don’t play in a casino very often, but when I do, I’m there to have fun and to make money. As if it’s not hard enough to overcome the rake (casino’s cut of each pot), I’m also expected to overcome dealer tips. Might as well play the slots!

I give a waitress tips because she is taking my order, getting me food, and cleaning up after me. Her job is to serve me in the restaurant. Waitress’s don’t get a decent wage, because tips are the norm. Dealers get paid wages and from the little bit that I’ve heard, it’s pretty decent money. I could be totally wrong on that though. A dealer’s job is to deal the cards and count chips. Something that I (or anyone else at the table) could easily do. Why again do I need to tip this person? No one tips me at work when I fix their computer. I know it’s my job, but it’s hardly a job that anyone at the University can perform.

If we are supposed to tip the dealer, why only on hands that we win? It’s not like the dealer had any influence on our cards. If we are tipping them for “service,” they are providing the same level of service on hands that we win and hands that we lose. The only difference is that we are satisfied with this “service” when we win, but not when we lose.

I’m heading to the casino on Saturday night. I think I might see how much I can win, without tipping the dealer on every pot that I pull in.


For some reason every 5 years or more this post gets shared around to a bunch of angry dealers who fail to read the entire discussion or fail to see by the date that this post was published in 2004! I had to close comments years ago because it gets out of control. Here’s a comment I left in 2009

For the record, I’ve always tipped when playing poker in a casino unless I forgot to on a hand, which happens to everyone. The only time I’ve ever not given a tip on purpose is if the pot was too small.

The Trip

Sorry for the lack of postings this past week, but I didn’t have Internet access readily available. With that said, here is how the week went…

On Sunday, we (mom went with) took off for Detroit around 10 a.m. We had a connecting flight in Chicago and ended up landing in San Diego at about 6 p.m. It was nice gaining the extra 3 hours. The temperature was 78 degrees, but it was almost dark already. We picked up our rental car (Pontiac Grand Am), checked into the Wyndham (a very nice hotel) and grabbed something to eat at Chili’s, which was right in front of the hotel. After eating we decided to hit up a casino.

The Viejas Casino (pronounced “Vee-A-Haas”) was one that I had found online with a poker room. I scoped out the poker room and put my name on a waiting list for a table. It wasn’t too long and I was playing the $2/$4 beginner Hold’em table. Since it was the beginner table to teach people how to play, check-raising was not allowed. Talk about a loose table! People were playing every hand imaginable. I didn’t really get shit for cards the whole night or I could have made out like a bandit. Played for about 3 and a half hours and lost $22. Not too bad considering how bad my cards were.

Continue reading “The Trip”

Binion's Forced To Close

A historic day in the world of poker. The world famous Binion’s Horseshoe Casino was closed late yesterday. Get the full details by reading the article. I hope they don’t have to move the WSOP somewhere else this year.