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Crescent School of Gaming and Bartending

 
 
    The SOFT TOUCH 

        

One Thing You Don't Need

There are a lot of things a player needs in order to be successful with this game. Drive, commitment, patience, discipline, confidence, follow-through and money are among the many requirements on an endless list of items a craps player needs to build a positive outcome at the tables.

One thing that a craps player does not need on his list of success building tools is blame. Poor performance and bad outcomes are simply the result of our choice to play under less than optimal conditions.

I know I like to talk about how the game of craps has so many dimensions and can be played on so many different levels. In this game, a player can experience playing a game within a game. Playing the Do Pass/Don't Pass line, placing box number wagers and utilizing dice sets and throws all have their place in facilitating winning opportunities.

The table is too bouncy, the boxman is giving me heat, I was out of position, etc., are common complaints that are voiced to me by players for not winning. The list can go on. Players find something they can blame for not having a successful outcome or desired result.

Here is what I believe many players do not realize: by placing blame on something outside themselves, they give up their power to create winning opportunities.

Everything we do at the tables involves making choices that will lead us down a path to winning, or not. The decision to play originates with us. So, the outcome is our responsibility and ours alone. Let's not blame another player who has just as much right to play at the same table as you do for our inability to create a win.

Last week, the Dice Coach and I decided to play a craps session at Treasure Island. The table we selected had friendly and recognizable dealers and it was not full of players. So position, table surface, and the dealer support were all there inviting us to play. As our session progressed, the table filled with players as Dice Coach and I proceeded to put together quite a few good money making rolls.

Now, as the table "heat's" up, other players buy in wishing to capitalize on our rolls. There are players placing their bets in areas that happen to be directly on my landing spot. Who's at fault when my dice land on their chips resulting in a seven out? It is mine and mine alone. Knowing that I can continue to toss the dice in an area that has the potential to change my outcome may cause a change in results and is part of the game.

In this case, I knew the player had no idea how important it was to me to have a clear landing spot. So, I respectfully and very politely walked to the opposite end of the table and asked him if he wished to keep winning on his pass line bets. The obvious answer was yes.

"Could you move your chips just a few inches toward the stick man, please" was my request. This player at the opposite end of the table obliged me and we all continued to get a few more of our bets paid. Winning was important to him.

A very different scenario could have played out. The player could have simply refused to move his chips for whatever reason. I make the choice to continue to use that landing spot and I seven out.

I don't blame the player for my outcome of a seven out. I respect and honor him as he has every right to play as he sees fit, just as do I. I blame myself for the outcome. By refusing to recognize that my optimal conditions for shooting were changing, I left myself open to loss. I needed to make a change in my direction to create the win.

Let me digress for a second here.

In this game, as in life, often the players who most annoy or antagonize us are the ones we need most at the table to teach us what we wish to learn. When we see something with a player we do not like, we need to be careful. Sometimes, these players can be mirrors of ourselves. What we dislike about them can be likely a behavior of our own that we are not aware of. When we are alert to this, it is quite easy to do something that can change your own gaming reality.

It is interesting how players accept full responsibility for winning, yet, when it comes to losing, they will find everything and anything other than themselves to blame for losing. Still, as successful players, it is important to take just as much responsibility for losing because we have the power to create that outcome.

As long as a player blames something or someone outside of himself or herself, they are effectively robbing themselves of their own gaming empowerment. I feel a craps player has to look at their session outcomes in a different light.

After all, if the thought process is that "it is not my fault for sevening-out because my dice kept hitting other players' chips during my turn at the craps table", then there is nothing I can do about changing and improving my future performance.

If I take responsibility in knowing that there is the potential for my dice to react unfavorably when hitting player's chips positioned in my usual landing spot, I can choose to continue to play and accept the consequences at the risk of losing my turn by sevening-out. I still had the power to not play. I still had the choice to shoot or pass the dice. I could even find a different landing spot.

I'll be the first to admit that I have lost a few times at the tables though out my last ten years of serious craps play. While the losses when compared against my winnings are relatively minimal, I have had my struggles and my share of losing craps and poker sessions even when I did what I perceived to be correct.

I learned early on, that if I truly wished to be a winning player I had to be responsible and embrace all outcomes of this game. As I continued to add more and more success building tools in my dice playing toolbox, placing "blame" inside my toolbox would effectively diminish any money building opportunities in my future.

You see, when you get on with taking responsibility for everything that happens in your game, your game improves. When that happens, you lose any and all desire to be a player who blames.

Take responsibility for everything in your game. Blame is one tool you don't need in your gaming toolbox.

Soft Touch

Opportunities are often things you haven't noticed the first time around. - Catherine Deneuve -

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