Inside de The Life of a Casino Dealer
As a gambler I have only seen one side of the felt, the player’s side. As I watch the dealer shuffle the deck, pass out the cards, and all of the seemingly mundane tasks that go with the game one can´t help to wonder what it is like in the life of the casino dealer. Is it a fun job? What is it like? Are there any strange stories that you can tell? The job of a casino dealer is definitely not a traditional one and it does have some elements to it that can be downright entertaining or enlightening. Here are some odds and ends:
- Dealers go through a lot: Not winning when we expect to can be frustrating, but don´t take it out on the dealer. This should be par for the course but most people can´t resist the urge to blame the dealer or take out their frustrations on the guy or gal that just deals the cards and doesn’t determine fate. Most casinos have the dealer parking lots in far off locations or secret locations for security reasons. Usually every casino or pit boss has a secret panic button to whisk away unruly patrons. There are also the compulsive lot, whom even go as far as not leaving for the bathroom in favor of one last hand. Dealers see, hear, and smell a lot.
- Security is insane: Gambling is serious business and rightfully so, the hard earned money of thousands of patrons is on the line and fair play is important. Dealers often go through rigorous security screenings both before and leaving work. Even getting the job often involves a serious background check. The cameras are also there not only to watch you but also the dealers. Security trusts no one and this is for your benefit. Rest assured the dealer is the last one that will be behind anything foul.
- Their job is as fun as you make it: Just because they deal the cards doesn’t mean they can´t have a little fun. Sure, we will never cross the line and tell you what cards we have or something like that but good rapport and fun interactions can make the game more entertaining than it already is and this is something we enjoy. Be loose, be yourself, and have fun.
- You should treat the game how the dealers are handled: Ever notice that when you are on a good run sometimes dealers will switch or that sometimes when everyone’s lucky dealers are rotated out more frequently? Gambling is an activity involving luck and with luck comes superstition so when one is losing too much they are often switched out to see if the luck changes. You should do the same. If you aren’t having any luck move games or tables, luck is random and doesn’t care how long you have been at the table or machine.
- Dealers work odd hours: With most casinos being open 24 hours a day, much like any other jobs you have plenty of odd shifts.
- Breaks: To preserve the integrity of the game dealers are often restricted to certain, non public break areas to prevent collusion with players.
- Tips: tips are appreciated and usually split evenly amongst the dealers.
- There is a lot to learn: As a dealer, we are to learn everything there is to know about every game. Odds, strategies, rules, variations, types of bets, and the list go on. It isn’t all just fun and games. For the dealer at least.
I hope these facts and anecdotes gave you a better feel as for what life is like on the other side of the felt. I imagine you found that this job is much like any other, it has it´s perks but it also has many parts of the job that you wouldn’t think about if you didn’t stand in their shoes. Happy gambling and remember… Be nice to the dealer.