Archive for February 10th, 2008

Cheaters Never Win and Las Vegas Never Cheats

Sunday, February 10th, 2008


It happened again this week. Some friends came back from Vegas and the guy said about the dumbest thing any tourist can say, “We had a great time but we shouldn’t have gone into the casinos. I lost about $700 gambling. The casinos never lose – they cheat.”


I pretended to cough to keep from laughing. “The bastards!  How did they cheat you?” The response? “I don’t know, Franco. They rig the slot machines – they use marked decks for “21” (when a “gambler” calls Blackjack – “21”, you kinda know the guy ain’t playing for super high stakes). Whatever they do, you never leave the casino a winner! That’s how they keep these joints open.”

In conversations like this, I swear I spend about three quarters of the time trying NOT to burst out laughing. Sometimes I bite my lip; sometimes I cough. Sometimes I just try to think grim, horrible thoughts. What is it about me? Do I have a fetish for stupidity?

“Were you ever ahead?” I asked innocently.

Sheepish grin, “Oh yeh, at one point I was ahead about $300.”

Me: “Well, why didn’t you just walk out of the casino then – with their money?”

“Oh, you know how it is. I thought I was on a streak…..blah, blah, blah”.

I smiled. He now had to hear the Franco “You Are Such an Ungrateful Slob!” lecture which goes something like this:

“Las Vegas doesn’t cheat because IT DOESN’T HAVE TO CHEAT, YOU IDIOT! They tell you exactly what they make in percentages. They make roughly 10-20% of a GAZILLON gaming dollars every hour – 24 hours a day. Why the hell would they cheat and risk losing the trust of their revenue base?”

“The world has about 6-billion people in it. 3-billion of whom went to bed hungry last night. Yesterday, over 40,000 children died from starvation and disease. You just came back from a wonderful 4-day/ 3-night warm vacation. You stayed at one of the world’s premier hotels and ate at fancy restaurants with your lovely lady. You saw a Hollywood star (I already forgot which one) and gambled like James Bond in a few nice casinos. A jet plane took you 2000 miles and back – in just a few hours.”

“And for all of this, you paid about one and a half percent of your combined yearly income – and you’re whining! If there were a god in heaven who believed in justice, your friggin’ jet would have been hit by a goddamn lightening bolt at your first complaint!”

“And, not for nothing, your crummy $700 might have kept the lights on in ONE casino for about two and a half minutes. Somehow!….they might have limped through the night without the money they STOLE from you.”



Sunday, February 10th, 2008

I know, I know. You think you need my brilliant perceptions on everything to make sense of the world. NOT TRUE. There are some things at which even retarded goldfish shake their heads       in disbelief. For example,


Hyman Schnaterfunkensprunk of Florida will be paying $250 a year to have his name on his Hummer.

Fred O. Dickenson, Executive Director of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, announced today the rollout of the much anticipated “Bigger Vanity Plate Program (BVPP)”

The program, first suggested by Dickenson in May, 2003, allows motorists in Florida to obtain vanity license plates of up to 250 characters. “Now the citizens of our great state can be confident that their right to express themselves has been protected.”

Governor Jeb Bush praised Dickenson for “his vision and insight in conceiving of and making this program a reality.” At a fee of $10 per year per letter, BVPP is projected to bring in more than $4 billion annually to the state’s treasury.

“It is our hope,” Governor Bush concluded, ‘that other states in similar financial straits will see this program as something to emulate.”

Like my twin Amy says, “You don’t have to make stuff up – things are weird enough just as they are.”