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Atlantic City Journal

It was one year ago when I last played in Atlantic City.  I still love it, and I used to frequent it on an almost weekly basis back in the early ‘80’s.   But as I developed my Precision-Shooting, I enjoyed the crowded, high-minimum tables less and less.  I can “mix-it-up” with the best of the strong personalities that New York, New Jersey and nearby Phili players and dealers have to offer, but getting to throw the dice once every hour certainly limits my earning capacity. I now make a pilgrimage back there once in a while.  Since I am planning an upcoming trip to the shore, I was reviewing the notes from my last trip there.  I thought I would share a peek with you.

Here’s an insightful daily journal of my last visit.


After arriving on a 10:30 am flight, I checked-in at Caesar’s, and was surprised to find that my suite was ready.  That’s one advantage of an early Monday morning arrival; the other is that the whole Boardwalk is much less crowded than on a busy weekend.

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I unpacked and knew I had several leisurely hours before my confederates would arrive.  I wandered by the craps pit to check out the action.  I was again pleasantly surprised that the table minimums were reasonably set at $5.  I had pre-sorted all of my Player’s Cards for each casino, with the one for CP A/C right on top.  With a decent buy-in of $1,000, I had an acceptable session.  Here’s the results: 

Session #1        Caesars             Playing time: 40 min.     My hands: 2      My Rolls: 14 & 29                     Total profit: $740

Session #2        Caesars             Playing time: 50 min.     My hands: 3      My Rolls: 12, 21 & 37                Total profit: $1820

I met up with my friends awhile later.  We had a great dinner at Primavera, and discussed various ways to maximize our time in town.  These guys don’t get away from their wive’s very often, so they wanted to bank as many waking hours as they could gambling, drinking, chasing women, and generally having what they consider to be a GOOD TIME.  They immediately started to act like life-sentence convicts out on a weekend-pass.  No warnings about “all things in moderation” for this group of revelers.  We played at Caesars before moving down the Boardwalk.

Session #3        Caesars             Playing time: 45 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 11                               Total profit: $85

Session #4        Bally’s               Playing time: 90 min.     My hands: 3      My Rolls: 18, 17, 19                    Total profit: $420

Choppy tables and trying to get the guys to keep the dice on the table limited my profit and fun.  They moved on to a couple of other houses like a herd of drunken cattle, while I headed back to the hotel for some much needed sleep.


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I awoke to a free continental breakfast that is set up for every guest on each floor of the Temple Tower.  I knew that the rest of the crew wouldn’t be alive for hours, so I had one quick and profitable session.

Session #5        Caesars             Playing time: 25 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 31                   Total profit: $570

I headed back up to my suite to change, and proceeded directly to the Spa.  A good workout followed up with the whirlpool and sauna, chased away most of the cigar-smoke that had permeated every pore the previous night.  When I got back upstairs, there was a message on my phone from one of the wide-awake, but hung-over party survivors.  I met up with the gang at the appointed place, but not at the appointed time in the Resorts lobby.  Several of them were late, and wearing sunglasses even though we were inside.

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They actually didn’t look any worse from the previous evenings wear and tear.  Some of their eyes were as pink as milk-fed veal, but other than that, I was surprised that some of them could still stand.  The one thing that each of them made sure that I heard about was the great time they had at the Sands and Caesars after I left them to their own devices the previous night.  Funny thing was, each one had a different version of what actually happened.  I think that alcohol clouded their collective memories.  As best as I could piece together, three, four or more of them had strung together several hot hands over a period of  six or seven hours at the two casinos.  All of them were flush with newly-won cash, and all were eager to play.

Session #6        Resorts              Playing time: 45 min.     My hands: 2      My Rolls: 17 & 29                    Total profit: $485

Session #7        Taj Mahal           Playing time: 90 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 2                              Total profit: (-$75)

Session #8        Showboat          Playing time: 105 min.    My hands: 1      My Rolls: 20                             Total profit: $310

Session #9        Resorts              Playing time: 30 min.     My hands: 2      My Rolls: 24 & 5                       Total profit: $220

A couple of notable things happened that afternoon. When we arrived at the Taj, the place was rockin’.  Several tables were hot all at the same time.  As soon as we got onto a good table, the streak would end.  It happened at five straight tables, so we felt about as welcome as the black-death coming for a visit.  I only got to shoot once in that whole session, and it was a disappointment.  The only up-side to all of that, was that my losses were the lowest of the group.  Most of the guys lost anywhere from $300 to $4700 during that one session. 

We moved over to the Showboat where again the tables were busy.  We all couldn’t fit at one table so we spread out over three of them.  As fortune would have it, one of the guys put together a monster roll, but there was no room at the table for the rest of us to join in.  Still, we all made back our Taj losses, and we ended the afternoon back at Resorts for another decent assembly.  When we returned to Caesars, some of them played craps until dinner, while I made a few phone calls while relaxing in the Jacuzzi back in my room.  

Dinner was courtesy of The Sands based on their rip-snortin’ great time they had the night before.  We ate like ravenous wolves on a steer carcass, only not as daintily as wolves would eat.   The Brighton Beach Steakhouse at the Sands serves a decent meal that tasted all the better after a long, profitable afternoon. 

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We played a couple of additional sessions, but the booze once again clouded the minds, judgement and speech of the group save for one.  I won’t make you guess who the lone hold-out was.   I like to drink too, and I have a bar at home that rivals some of the most well-provisioned bars in the world.  However, when I play, I NEVER drink alcohol because it makes it easier for the casino to separate a man from his money.  I do this for a living, and my earnings depend on my clear-headed focus.  I don’t want my lawyer, brain-surgeon, pilot, or driver to drink while they are working, and I certainly don’t want my skills to be adversely affected by it when I am working either.  Sermon’s over, go home and sin no more!  Seriously though, if want to make money at this pursuit, if you drink, please don’t play and vice versa.

Session #10      Sands                Playing time: 120 min.    My hands: 3      My Rolls: 21, 16, & 18         Total profit: $580

Session #11      Claridge             Playing time: 120 min.    My hands: 4      My Rolls: 24, 16, 22 & 5       Total profit: $805


The Claridge session was memorable because the table stayed lukewarm for the entire two hours.  My last hand was actually the shortest roll for the entire time there.  We were all pleased, and took a couple of taxis back to Caesars.


I followed the same routine as yesterday morning; free breakfast, one short session followed by the gym, spa and steam-room.

Session #12      Caesars             Playing time: 20 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 19                   Total profit: $360


Once again, a telephone message told me to meet the posse at the Hilton.

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I got there and waited, and waited and then waited some more.   I called the various rooms where everyone was staying back at the hotel, but there was no response.  I decided to head to the Hilton craps pit to see if they were possibly there.   Not recognizing anyone, I bought in for my regular A/C session bankroll of $1,000.  By the end of play, I had fattened that into $6,100.

Session #13      Hilton                 Playing time: 75 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 58                   Total profit: $5100


When I finished, I checked back at the little coffee-bar where we were supposed to meet.  Still no sign of any recognizable faces, I treated myself to a large Hazelnut Mocha Cream coffee.

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So I’m sitting there, drinking off my coffee, and in rolls my rag-tag bunch of craps-misfits.  Once more I have to endure their story about another craps session that I missed.   Apparently, a few guys were late to rise, so some started to while away the time playing craps while the remainder were resurrected from their graves.  What started out as a short session dragged out over THREE HOURS.  They made a little, lost a little, made a little and gave back a little over that period until all of them were present and accounted for.  It was my turn to tell them what they had missed out on, but I was a little coy.  So I brought them back to the same table that I had the long roll at and acted normal.  All the dealers and the box-man applauded as I approached.   Even the floor-supervisors nodded their heads in smiling approval.  The box-man said, “You aren’t going to bet all $5000 in profit back are you?”  There was a collective gasp from my compadres, as I shook my head “no”.  I told the boys that they had missed out on my decent hand while they were still comatose.  By this time, some had sworn off booze for at least a full hour, while others didn’t have that kind of rock-solid resolve.  I enjoyed the last few sips of coffee, as they tipped back libation of a stronger sort.

Session #14      Hilton                 Playing time: 240 min.    My hands: 5      My Rolls: 24, 12, 17, 22 & 9       Total profit: $980

Those four hours didn’t produce anything amazing, but as always, I was grateful to pocket ANY profit.  A couple of guys actually dropped about a thousand each when the table turned ice-cold for five shooters in a row.  I simply switched sides, and made some decent No-4 money on three of them.  I asked for and received comps for my entire crew to eat at the Oaks Steakhouse.  If you can picture a pack of mangy junkyard-dogs with ribs showing through their fur, being unleashed on a defenseless rabbit; then you can picture my guys going full-rip at the fine carnivorous-offerings at The Oaks.  It’s a wonder no one lost any fingers, or TOES, for that matter!

I had a full set of comped tickets to see Howie Mandel, which was the reason, and excuse, for this entire trip.  Knowing that I wouldn’t be playing any more that evening, I partook in a number of bottles of Poilly Fuisse that had been uncorked.  We headed over to see what turned out to be a very funny show, as always, from Mandel.


Once again, the Temple Tower buffet started my day, followed by another short session at the tables.

Session #15      Caesars             Playing time: 20 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 20                   Total profit: $470

Once again, a great work-out in the gym followed religiously by a sauna and steam was a perfect start to the day.

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We all met up at Bally’s Wild West Casino, and everyone actually showed up on time.  We resolved to finally do what we set out to do several days earlier, and that was to play with a coordinated plan with the goal of maximizing fun and profit.  I told them the two ideas weren’t exclusive from the other, but they had to remain focused on the profit part, if they were to have on-going casino fun.   We agreed to play until everyone had at least one hand with the dice, if we could get on an uncrowded table.  We had the following experience:

Session #16      Bally’s WW       Playing time: 45 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 19                              Total profit: $265

Session #17      Bally’s PP         Playing time: 55 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 2                                Total profit: (-$75)

Session #18      Trump Plaza      Playing time: 45 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 20                              Total profit: $390

Session #19      Tropicana          Playing time: 40 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 4                                Total profit: (-$5)

Session #20      Hilton                 Playing time: 75 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 39                             Total profit: $785

Session #21      Trump Plaza      Playing time: 60 min.     My hands: 1      My Rolls: 22                              Total profit: $430


We had dinner at a fine Italian restaurant at Trump’s Plaza.  I think it was called Roberto’s, although I didn’t make a note of the name.  The veal, pasta and tiramisu was enough for me, and I slowly walked back to Caesars.  The tables were crowded, and I hardly felt like bulldozing my way in.  I went upstairs to catch-up on the world’s events by reading USA Today from front to back.


At check-out, the first two nights were automatically comped because of my previous play and invitation.  Since we were all there as a group, and the rest of the guys had played at Caesars quite a bit more than I had, our casino host wrapped all our play together, and graciously picked up my other two nights.  I was pleasantly surprised.  I silently thought to myself that a couple of the other guys either dropped a bundle that I didn’t know about, or some of them had played a LOT LONGER than I knew about.  Either way, I was pleased.  Even if I had had to pay for some or even all of it, I would still be happy with the net profit.

Here’s a summary of the sessions. 

Total sessions: 21
Total Playing Time: 23 hours, 55 minutes
Total Hands: 38 
Total rolls: 715
Total Profit: $14,665

Average session time was 68 minutes
Average number of rolls per hand: 18.8 rolls

I played quite a bit more per day than I usually do, but I didn’t play when I was tired.  If I had stayed out late and enjoyed their own good set of rolls at the Sands and Caesars, my profit may have been higher.  On the other hand, that one late night probably would have adversely affected my subsequent shooting on the following day. 

As I plan to re-visit Atlantic City, I am looking forward to hitting all of the casinos including the marina area.  I anticipate typical summer crowds, but if I can do as well as last year, I’ll be more than happy with the results.

Good Luck & Good Skill at the Tables…and in Life

By:  The Mad Professor

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