Saturday, March 24, 2012

Pig Boy You're Going Down

Elvis could'a been a dealer. He had the look.

He had the lip.

He had the leer. But as far as I know, Elvis never wore polyester in Pepto-Bismol pink.

Not with puffy sleeves and wide collars. Not like the dealers of Circus Circus. Not like me.

Arms crossed, hip cocked against the blackjack table, I'd stare into space and will the players to keep on walking. They never did.

Squeezed into a tiny tube top, and teetering on stilettos, a woman peers at me. "How are the cards tonight?"

"Can't seem to lose." I shrug as she thanks me and moves on.

Overhearing the comment, Poker Pete slides onto the stool at first base and blows smoke in my face. "Don't worry," he says in a voice thick with gravel, "I'll teach you a lesson."

I grunt, deal a hand and sweep his chips into the tray. He narrows his eyes and sends another plume of smoke my way. I hold my breath and smirk. I know this type of player. He thinks if he can make me angry, I'll start to lose.

There's just one problem.

I like to win. Winning makes me happy and I like to be happy. Besides, Murphy is in charge and you can't mess with Murphy.

"You're a bitch." He mumbles and hands over another hundred dollar bill.

"The way you're playing," I say, "you better make that two."

He snorts, but after a moment, he peels a second note from his money clip and I toss him a handfull of red chips and then one by one, take them back.

When the relief dealer approaches the table. I clap my hands and expose empty palms to the eye in the sky to prove I haven't stolen from the table.

"You always like this?" Asks Pete as I step down from the box.

"Pretty much," I tell him, "but I'll be back in twenty minutes and you can teach me a lesson then."

He chokes down a laugh and, for the first time all night, I start to grin.

Back from break, I push in on another game. The table is packed. The drinks are flowing and the players are playing the big bucks. I'm not sure I'm in the mood for a rowdy crowd, but I sweep a fresh deck across the felt and smile.

"Kelly" they shout in unison when they see my nametag. I heave a sigh. Thank you Cheers. Thank you Woody. Before I can deal the first hand the players drum their fingers on the edge of the table and begin to sing in monotonous C. "Kelly, Kelly, Kelly ..."

Oh Lord, my head is starting to pound, but my luck holds and within minutes the rowdys have stopped chanting my name and are packing in their chips. The casino floor is quiet. Maybe I'll get to go home early.

I cross my arms against my chest and cock my hip against the table. Before I can fantasize about what I'd do with a million dollars, if I ever played mega bucks, a snot nosed college kid heads my way.

Well crap.

I narrow my eyes and curl my lip. Elvis would have been proud, but Mr. Twenty One Years And Two Days Old doesn't notice. He places one red chip on the table. I'll bet it's his last chip. All I have to do is win one last bet and I can get rid of him.

I can go home.

I can have a glass of merlot.

"No more bets." I sweep my hand over the table and deal the cards. He has sixteen. I'm showing a ten. Okay Pig Boy you're going down. I grin.

He motions for a card. I deal a two. Without looking at me he crooks his finger. "Did you want another card?" I ask. "You have eighteen."

He doesn't answer but he signals for another card and I smirk. I should'a known better. Murphy is in the house and I've waved the red flag. I lay down a three and grit my teeth.

"Blackjack." He crows and leaps to his feet.

Oh for the love of ... "No Sweetie,"  I shake my head, "you have twenty one, but that's not blackjack."

"That's a winning hand," says Poker Pete sliding back onto first and launching a smoke ring, "and I'm ready to teach you a lesson."

Well crap. I need an aspirin.







36 comments:

  1. geez. the people you have to deal with.... how do you do it? oh, wait! i think i know.. it's got to be the attitude you throw out.. the cocked hip, arms crossed, and the curled lip.. that is sure to draw them in! too funny, kelly! kelly! kelly! :D

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    1. Finding a real career would have been easier, but I didn't have the guts.

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  2. You do a great job of anchoring the setting and creating a mood. Nicely done. It also reminds me why I don't gamble.

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    1. High praise coming from you, I love your site, and I have to tell you, gambling bores the bejeesus out of me.

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  3. I loved this story! I've lived this story!

    I used to be a cocktail waitress at Circus Circus, Tunica, MS (many years ago, before menopause and muffin tops). I developed the same lip curl reserved for the "I'll catch you next time" tippers. I miss my snarky attitude.

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    1. Menopause and muffin tops, that's funny, but I'm right there with you.

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  4. Even I know that's not called 'blackjack'! That's 'checkmate' right?

    Great story telling!

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    1. Too true, and you know how much I like the last word.

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  5. Now I'm going to Google to find out why that isn't 'blackjack'....

    This was some fabulous storytelling!!!!

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    1. Thanks Amy, I appreciate the visit and stand in awe of your parental skills. (Blackjack is always an ace and a ten or face card)

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  6. I didn't know this was you; I thought it was a story. That's a job I would really not like, good on you for doing it so well.

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    1. I didn't like it either, but there were moments that made me laugh.

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  7. You make my boring past even more boring! I'll just have to live vicariously through you! Love it!

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    1. I'm a poor role model, but I can laugh at my stupid choices. You Kat, are far wiser.

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  8. I love blackjack- Can't play well but it;s like playing poker without thinking too much. I guess that's why I don't play very often.

    Some dealers really do suck the luck away. Must be their soap!

    I like pig boy, lol.

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    1. Dealer's would rather lose. Losing means better tips and tips mean you can pay the light bill. Me? Dunno, I always did better when I was winning for the house. Go figure.

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  9. I needed a glass of merlot just reading that. You and me, girlfriend, we've worked some jobs!!
    Love your stories, as always. :)

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    1. Next time around I want to be that little kid who knows what he wants to do for a living and follows through. (Nah, too easy and look at the crap we get to write about. Pick a bar Dawn and I'm there.)

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  10. I'm 50 years old and have never been in a casino. Wait. That's not entirely true. I wandered through one once when I was a kid and Vegas had some fairly lax rules about minors on family vacations.

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    1. Once is more than enough. Dude, the moment you get your cow and a few acres, I'm moving in. What was the address again?

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  11. I don't know anything about blackjack. I would be a real sucker in that game! I'll take an asprin if you're handing them out though. :) I almost always have at least a slight headache. :)

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    1. Last time you were in Vegas you were detained by Elmo. I still chuckle when I see some unsuspecting kid with Elmo tucked under his arm.

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  12. :-) That was a lot of fun! Why aren't I here more often?!!!

    Pearl

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    1. Er, cause I got off to a rocky start and my blog etiquette took time to evolve. Thanks Pearl, have a splendid day.

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  13. I'm echoing what Pearl said. Why don't I stop by your blog more often?

    :) Happy Tuesday.

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    1. So many blogs, so little time. Your Thursday links are awesome and I'm going to chase them down when I get to the hotel. :)

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  14. lol, great post! You're a good writer; I actually read this from beginning to end! HOnored to have you have read my own tale. I'll be back!

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  15. Sometimes I get lucky. Thanks for the super comment Sandra. :)

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  16. you had me cracking up, your writing is amazing! ha when I was young everyone would always sing to me Kelly, Kelly, Kelly. When I read your blogs I am alway totally and completely pulled in. I am glad I found you!

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    1. Funny how these little songs stay with us. Glad you popped in for a visit Kelly. Have a great weekend.

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  17. Replies
    1. Behave Mrs. Tuna or I'll, I'll deliver an award.

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