Riverboat Gamblers

Back from a weekend in Biloxi. My brother and I spread my father’s ashes in the gulf and gambled in his honor for a weekend. Dad loved the place, and wanted to retire there. I really wish that he had lived long enough for that to happen. I had never been in a casino until this weekend. Not being a gambler type, I played less like a dashing rogue and more like an actuary. It seemed to work, because I finished $60+ ahead for the stint. In fact, I did this without ever throwing my own cash in. When we first sat down at the roulette wheel, my brother threw a chip on my brithday and said “This one is for you.” As it happened, it hit and he gave me the $35 that paid off. I played on that all the way through. My high water mark was $75 or so ahead, and twice I was on my last spin where if I didn’t hit I’d be wiped out and both times I hit. That was plenty of excitement for me. I worked out a system that is less about making things hit (which I can’t do) and more about knowing when to stop when you get ahead. I’m enough of a dork to now set me up a program that runs a simulation of using my system over a long period of time, to see what percentage of the time you would finish ahead and by how much.

Published by


Dave Slusher is a blogger, podcaster, computer programmer, author, science fiction fan and father. Member of the Podcast Hall of Fame class of 2022.