RSS Feed
Dec 16

Gambling – Walking Away A Winner

Posted on Friday, December 16, 2011 in Uncategorized

On a cool summer day I drove to Wisconsin. I had a speaking engagement.  Along the road I saw signs for Turtle Lake Casino.  At that time I’d only been to a casino or two.

While driving home I realized that I was hungry.  I had seen a Subway restaurant along the road and that seemed like a good idea.  Then Turtle Lake Casino came to mind.  I knew I had just been paid, but I only had four dollars in cash.  It seemed kinda silly to walk into a casino with only four dollars, and food seemed like a much better idea.

Turn left into Subway?  Turn right to the casino?

Finally I rationalized that I could, if I lost all my money, wait an hour until I got home to eat; so, I pulled into the casino parking lot.

Dank & Dark

I was a sunny day outside.  Upon walking into the casino it seemed especially dark.  It felt emotionless and stale.  Colorful fluorescent lights only seemed to  highlight the dingy atmosphere. Undeterred I headed to the cashier.

I sheepishly placed my money — four dollar bills —  on the counter.  “Can I have quarters please?” Without a word, four piles of quarters slid across the counter.

I picked out a slot machine.  One after another I dropped the quarters into the slot.  In a couple of minutes all but five of quarters were all gone.

That’s when I heard the sound.  Clang.  Clang.  Clang.  Someone had won on the dollar slot machine.  It was a wealthy, exciting sound.

Poorer but Hopeful

I walked back to the cashier.  I slid four quarters across the counter and asked, “Can I have a dollar coin?”

I walked back to the machines with my quarter and my dollar coin.

I’ve prayed many times.  My prayers are diverse  Sometimes things go “my way” and others prayers — including that the Chicago Cubs would win the World Series — seem to get answered with a resounding no. 

I’m not of the opinion that God controls, manages or even necessarily cares about every detail of our lives.  On the other hand, I must admit that I prayed that I would win when I pulled the slot machine lever.

I pulled the lever.

I heard it.  I heard that sound again — Clang.  Clang.  Clang. — a total of twelve times.

Let’s assume that there was no divine intervention and it was simply a mathematical solution based on the machine’s algorithm, but, for whatever reason, I WON!

I Tripled My Money

It was a great feeling.  No wonder people keep playing.  They want to hear that sound again.  They want to feel the joy of winning.

What happened next?  I collected my winnings.

The cashier must have thought I was so odd, but about sixty seconds after I got my dollar coin I was back. I cashed it all in.  I said to the cashier, “I’ll never do that good again.  Time to leave.”

I kept one of the dollar coins as a souvenir to remind me of that day.

Lesson I Learned

I have played slots a few times since, but I have never again tripled my money.

My money-management principle when I play slots is to play only what I predetermine that I am willing to play. I never to play my winnings.

Slots is IMO entertainment.  If you play the slots, have fun, pay for your entertainment, then walk away.  Hopefully you’ll walk away with some money in your pocket.

Bring on the comments

  1. Living in Las Vegas, this was a lesson I learned very quickly: gamble only what you are willing to lose. From just a few dollars to pride and dignity, it frames my choices daily.

  2. Janice,

    Thank you for reading and adding your insights and wisdom!

Leave a Comment