I don’t believe in luck and I’m not Irish. But I did win some moolah at the Roulette table on St. Paddy’s day.
After throwing back a couple Guinesses at a tiki bar in Albuquerque with our pal, Katie, we decided that we were sick of spending money. We had just found out that we’d have to put some of our monthly budget into keeping Jolene on the road, so spending more money was not really something we were excited to do.
Justin came up with a great idea. “Let’s go to one of those casinos on an Indian reservation.” Caught off guard by an extremely un-Justin comment, I was at a loss for words. When I found the right one (YES), we devised a gameplan.
I’d never gambled before in my life, except for pretzels as a kid. So planning was crucial. Terminology was not. So bear with me and my lack of knowledge of the gamblesphere, I’m new here.
We were going to walk into the casino with $20. I was going to play Roulette with the sole goal of making another 20 bones, just enough to treat us to breakfast the next morning. Worst case scenario, we’re out 20 bucks. In comparison to the repair bill we were about to pay, 20 bucks would just be icing on the cake….
We waltzed into the casino just after midnight, so you know Irish luck wasn’t involved. After watching a few games, with Justin explaining to me what was going on, I decided it was now or never. I picked a spot next to a quiet gentleman who seemed to know what he was doing. After trying to hand the dealer my $20 bill (she immediately snapped at me and patted the table, signaling to put it on the table), he knew that I had no idea what I was doing.
Before walking in, Justin advised not to bet on specific numbers, but to stick with Black or Red. Although the payout is larger if you win with a specific number, it’s much riskier. I wasn’t trying to be a hero; I just wanted to make $20!
Trying to decide if I should bet on Red or Black, I looked down at my nervous hands fiddling with my chips. All I saw was the black dirt under my fingernails and decided that Black was going to be my move for the rest of the night.
I put 5 chips into the black box. The ball rolled. I sweated a little bit. And then the most magical thing happened: I made $5 by doing absolutely nothing! The ball fell on a black number and just like that, I was 5 smackeroos richer; ¼ of the way to a free stack of pancakes the next morning.
I won another round and got cocky, which led to a $10 bet. A red number put me back at even. I picked up my achey breaky heart and put another 5 chips on black. I went back and forth between heartbreaking loss and feeling like a boss for the next 40 minutes.
The other guys at the table were winning big and losing bigger. I could feel their mocking glances every time they watched me put 5 measly chips into the same black box each game. But I didn’t care. I was on a mission. And I was so close I could practically taste the bacon.
With 30 chips total, only 10 away from my goal, I decided to try another $10 bet to end this mess. And surely enough, the odds were in my favor. I looked at Justin and he made the motion that I should keep playing if I wanted. I thought about it but quickly decided to stick to my guns and walk away.
Victory is sweet. Especially in stuffed French Toast form. The scrambled eggs with cheese, hash browns, and bacon that accompanied it were surely not forgotten though. $20 goes a long way when you’re ballin’ on a budget. But with great risk comes great breakfast.