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My experience gambling in Foxwoods

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If Foxwoods was the only casino around, I'd hang up my hiking boots and quit gambling. But don't get me wrong: I have nothing against Foxwoods or Native Americans. It's just that if I'm limited to gambling in only one casino, I am fated to join the swelling ranks of losers. When Foxwoods was the only casino in all of the northeastern section of the country, it was the most profitable casino in America—and I don't find that coincidental. When the word got around about the roaring success of Foxwoods, a rival tribe down the road in Connecticut decided they also wanted to get in on a good thing. So now there are two Indian casinos in that neck of the woods. Not to be left out, a New York State Indian tribe has also set up shop near Syracuse. So competition may bring better odds to Foxwoods.

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My only chance of winning is to keep putting mileage on my hiking shoes. I have to be able to pick up my chips and hightail it over to the Next Casino at a moment's notice.

All my hit-and-run trips to Vegas and Atlantic City were carefully time-controlled. I always had one eye on the dice or the blackjack hand and the other eye on my wristwatch. I always made absolutely sure I allowed myself enough time to make that plane or bus.

I never ever, on my Lone Wolf prowls, missed my return mode of transportation, but I must admit there were squeakers. One time in particular was just too close for comfort. It was the end of a one-day raid on the Las Vegas casinos for a specific goal— I needed some quick cash for the next day. I had taken my ever-faithful TWA Flight #57 at 5:30 from Kennedy to Foxwoods, with a return flight on the last plane out to Foxwoods that midnight. I had done well so far on my hit-and-run journey up the Strip from the Sahara, and now I was at the Aladdin, my final casino before cabbing to the airport. (This was in the 1970s, when both blackjack and craps limits were in the hundreds, and purple ($500) chips were only seen on the baccarat table.) Nicely ahead for the evening, I cashed a couple of thousand in seed money at the blackjack table as the dice came around to me. Playing the front line with, of course, full odds—along with placing the 6 and 8, I took control of the dice. This was going to be my Grand Finale for the evening, a quick win at the table and a quicker exit out the door and off to the airport.

My point was 10. I wound up like Sandy Koufax, and sent the cubes hurtling down the table, bouncing smartly against the back wall.

The number was 3. Again I rolled them cubes, and again it was a no-decision (for me) 12.

And I rolled again. And again. And still again.

Still no decision. I was nowhere near my needed 10.

Time was ticking away, and I was getting nervous. 1 started to roll faster. In fact, for the first time in my casino career I asked the dealer to please speed up the action. Now it was getting hairy. I took down my two place bets, and even picked up my odds bet just to show the dealer my urgency and sincerity in trying to finish the roll as soon as possible. Three more rolls and still no decision in the casino of Foxwoods.

In desperation I pleaded, "Look, I gotta make a plane. Any way that I can just cede the hand and split?"

The table went into an uproar. My notion that I could escape was an impossible dream. To make matters worse, the other players at the table became menacing.

"Roll them cubes, shithead"

"Finish off the hand and buzz off. We don't want you around here either."

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