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Well, I'm back. I got home, skimmed my friends page, caught up on MT, and scanned my e-mail before writing this.

The cruise was fun. I went with something like sixteen relatives, some of whom I didn't actually know existed. Although they can be a pain in the ass sometimes, and they're almost always nuts (Mom gets asked sometimes how she comes up with such wacky families for her books, and always replies that the fictional ones are nothing compared to her real one), they can be enjoyable too.

Since we were in international waters, the age limits were lower--eighteen for beer, wine, and gambling. I didn't drink any beer, and only had a couple sips of wine (I haven't acquired a taste for it yet--even supposedly sweet whites are too bitter for me), but I did take advantage of the casino, mostly on relatives' money. :^) Wasted $60 on video poker the first couple nights, then on the last night, my parents introduced me to a table game called Let It Ride.

Let It Ride is a poker-based game, where a pair of ten or better scores, but you aren't playing against the other players or the house--just the odds. Each player sets up three equal bets (I stayed at the table limit of $5, although once or twice my grandfather doubled my bets for me to try to capitalize on my luck) and is dealt three cards, which they can look at. Two cards are laid face-down in the center of the table. At this point, you can pull back one of your bets if your hand doesn't look good, or "let it ride" by setting your cards face-down on the table. The dealer then turns over one of his two cards, and you reevaluate your hand. Once again, you can pull back a bet or let it ride. Then you set your cards down and the dealer reveals the second shared card. The dealer evaluates each hand, and if you have something he gives chips depending on ratios printed on the table. Although you're putting down $15 (in my case), you're really only risking $5, because you can pull the other $10 back.

My father gave me $50 to play this game; I was rather successful, earning all that back and pocketing $65 for myself. That's mostly because my parents taught me a system that requires that you set all winnings above what you started with aside--that way you don't gamble all your winnings away. The money (or most of it) will soon be safely ensconced in my bank account, which has been suffering of late.

As usual, the food was good, but that's why you go on a cruise, so yeah. I'm still a little zoned, because I only got five hours or so of sleep last night, but otherwise I'm fine. I had a cold while on board, but it wasn't too bad--the worst was the second day, when my voice was cutting in and out badly.

And that's it. I'll be going to the bank soon, and then on to school, and then probably on to In 'n' Out, because although steaks and onion soup and whatever are great, nothing quite matches one of their burgers. :^)


( Read 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 1st, 2003 10:28 am (UTC)
Yeah, Let-It-Ride is a pretty good game. I was a dealer for blackjack and novelty games like that for a little while at the Mohegan Sun casino in CT between taking my "hiatus" from college and joining the Marine Corps. And believe it or not, most nights it seemed like I actually handed out MORE money on let-it-ride than I took in. That's probably not entirely true, but it was close enough to seem that way. I was rather surprised the casino didn't get rid of it...

Anyway, sounds like you had a good time. Cool!
Dec. 1st, 2003 03:47 pm (UTC)
That's something my parents pointed out--the game is such that you lose slowly and gain quickly. When you're losing, it's like a slow bleed, five dollars at a time; when you win, however, you win big. (IIRC, if you have one pair in your hand and another comes up with the shared cards, you can win $30--and two pair is the second-lowest hand.) The result is that you don't even realize you're running out of money until you reach to grab a chip and there aren't any left. Great for the casinos, I suppose...
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