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How to Behave in the Casino

Novice gamblers often wonder how to behave at the gambling table. They're confused in the beginning, not quite sure how to act and react. At some tables they find everyone is smiling and jovial. Players joke with dealers as if they were old friends and everyone seems to be having a grand time. At other tables seriousness is the word, not chatting, no smiling, no nothing but pressures of the game. What is expected of one in such uncertain surroundings?

Generally the answer is to find the style of game you like and stick to it. If you're a no-nonsense man or woman, find a no-nonsense table. Though there are those times when a group of hyper-intense gamblers are grouped at one table with a hyper-intense dealer, croupier, or stickman as topping, most people play for fun just as much as they play for profit. This means the casino is by and large a cheerful place with plenty of sociability. Naturally there are certain rules of propriety one follows. These are few, largely unwritten, and good to know. Some of the basic ones are:

Be Careful about Kibitzing First of all, it's rude. No one wants to be told how badly he's playing or how much better the kibitzer would play if he were holding the same hand. Second, it's bothersome to others. And third, at times it can be taken as a form of cheating. If a person is just watching a game he is expected to watch it without contributing his advice.

Talking while Playing There is no hard, fast rule here. Certainly there are gregarious tables, even gregarious dealers, and certainly it's all right to make conversation in the course of a game. At the craps table there is always much noise and mirth, but craps has been a favorite of the noisemakers, and noisemakers usually make bad gamblers. Those who play by skill need to concentrate. This goes for you as well as the other guy. Too much chit-chat over the cards or dice is distracting. Mistakes are made, especially if playing a system. In the attempt to be overly sociable, a player can lose his or her concentration that is so vital to good gambling. So follow this rule, be friendly, be polite, but spend your real energies playing the game.

Be Careful of Liquor This is an obvious rule but hard to follow, especially when the drinks are cheap or even on the house. But remember, even one ounce of alcohol impairs reflex and thought response by as much as 10 percent. Yes, even one drink. Nothing will affect a gambler's discretion faster than booze. So save it for after the game.

Lose Well, Win Well Again, little need be said. A bad loser is not an infrequent sight in the Nevada casinos and, really, he or she is one of the most boring. Only adults are allowed to gamble and this for a sound reason, an adult is expected to be fully aware of the risks involved in chancing his money. If he loses, it is totally his responsibility, just as it is his responsibility not to throw tantrums or accusations if he comes out on the short end.

The same can be said about winning, nothing is as annoying as the gambler who crows his victory. Win or lose, it's best to remember that when one gambles he has an obligation to the other players and one of those obligations is to accept his fate with dignity.