Gambling is something that runs through my blood and gives me a rush like no other. It’s like the old saying goes, “Scared money makes no money,” and my money is more fearless than Taylor Swift’s 2008 album. As you can imagine, I was understandably excited when TFM announced they were brining back Casino Friday, letting my weekend begin the degenerate way.
As a resident of one of America’s least favorite states, New Jersey (hey, at least you remember we exist, unlike Wyoming), I’m a frequent visitor to the elderly human cesspool known as Atlantic City. While taking a victory lap after a good round of blackjack, I noticed that different games attract different crowds and that the way you lose your money to Lady Luck can say a lot about you.
Slot Machines are basically video games for people on social security. They’re also the laziest — and least fun way — to lose your nest egg. If you’ve ever been to a casino, you know the slot machine area is the worst part; the penny slot section of any casino is where cigarette smoke goes to die. If you weren’t alive during the Eisenhower administration, you have no excuse to be there. If you play the one-armed bandits, I’ve lost a little bit of respect for you.
Okay, so it’s not technically a casino game, but the lottery still deserves a place on this list. Playing the lottery is the least interesting form of gambling. Anyone can walk into a 7/11 and pick six numbers (or, even worse, have a computer pick those numbers for you). Buying multiple lottery tickets at a time is the financial equivalent of being a crazy cat lady; you’re pretty much just saying you’ve given up on life. I hope lottery rats realize they aren’t powerballin’ their way to the big life any time soon.
Poker is a badass game, but it ain’t all it’s cracked up to be. I’ll speak for myself when I say that it’s too long and confusing for me (losing my money shouldn’t be this goddamn complicated). In casinos, only three types of people play poker. The first are Dan Bilzerian wannabes, which I understand. The second are wannabe James Bond villains. The third and final type are people who think (and act like) they’re cowboys. You’re at a casino in New Jersey; take off the damn ten-gallon hat.
I’m 100% biased here because this is my game of choice. The BJ table is probably the most diverse; I’ve seen rich people, poor people, broke gamblers, soccer moms, and frat boys at the same $5 limit table at the Borgata. Minimum skill is involved for those just trying to loosely follow the rules; all you have to do is count to 21. Blackjack is the ultimate game for people who want to put in minimal effort but who also want at least a chance at some sort of return on their investment.
Sports betting is the jock of degenerate gambling, and I love it. It’s played exclusively by people who want to validate their lives of armchair quarterbacking/managing/race car driving/etc. You walk into a fancy room with fancy chairs and drop money on whatever your heart desires. MLB, NFL, NHL, NBA, WNBA — they have it all. You can bet on horse racing, too, but unless it’s the Kentucky Derby or your dad is a millionaire bourbon factory owner, I don’t know why you would. The undeniable best part of sports betting is that now when you scream at the TV? It’s actually justified..
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