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Casino school dropout

Marketplace Staff Aug 4, 2006

Casino school dropout

Marketplace Staff Aug 4, 2006


MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: Is your job getting, well, a little dull? How about something a bit more colorful and interesting? You could be a dealer! No, not that kind of dealer. I’m talking about the kind that works in a casino. Reporter Cash Peters enrolled for a day at a casino dealer school. He found out there’s more to the job than just a fancy shuffle.

CASH PETERS: To be a casino dealer takes qualifications, skills . . . and a dream. Teacher Jeff Sauer.

JEFF SAUER: You have to be aware of your surroundings, aware of the players, different styles, different personalities. You’re dealing with the public.

And nobody likes the public, right?

SAUER: Obviously you do if you’re a dealer. I mean, come on!

Yeah, sure you do. The National Bartenders and Casino School in Lakewood, Calif. signs up 20-30 students per month for its casino dealer course. They come because . . .

CARSON TYLER: Because it’s fun!

Well, because it’s fun, apparently. Mr. Shouty there was manager Carson Tyler.

TYLER: A lot of ’em learn to be dealers because it does improve your game. It can make you a much better player.

Are you sure they don’t just come along to learn how to cheat?

TYLER: Well, how can you be sure of anything?

Anyway, because these courses are so well-run and professional, they attract all kinds.

Why are you here?

DEALER #1: To learn a trade and do something different with my life.

What did you do before this?

DEALER #1: Nothing.

Oh, your old trade was doing nothing and now your new trade is doing something.

DEALER #1: Right.

The course costs $1,000. For that, teachers like Jeff Sauer will explain how to shuffle, how to fan the cards . . .

SAUER: Have your thumb on the bottom, your middle and your ring finger on the top, the index on the side. And you’re just releasing them with this index finger.

So you go like that and you go like that.

SAUER: Correct. And you just — there you go. You’re a born natural. You’re hired.

I completely screwed that up. Don’t lie.

SAUER: No, no, no. I’ve seen much worse.

Yeah, right. It must be tempting for an ordinary person to go to school, learn this stuff, then go to a casino with it, right? I put this fascinating idea to Carson the manager.

Say I took you as my lucky leprechauna€¦

TYLER: Oh God.

We walk around . . .

TYLER: Faith and Begorrah.

I walk around with you and I say, “Which is the best table? Which dealer here would I win with?”

TYLER: I administrate a school. That doesn’t make me a gambling expert.

But . . . help me cheat!

TYLER: I don’t even know how to cheat. All I know to do is run a casino school, and I’m damn good at it.

Gulp. So clearly it’s a big “NO” to cheating, then. So who would you say shouldn’t do it?

DEALER #1: Degenerates.

You’re saying these people shouldn’t be doing it?

GUYS: We’re not degenerates, we’re uh. . .

OTHER GUY: I’m a degenerate.

That guy’s a degenerate over there.

DEALER #1: Well, you’re in the wrong business, people.

If I was wanting to be a dealer now, what three things would I need to have in order to do it?

TYLER: Dedication, focus and personality. It’s not a part-time job, it’s a career.

[ phone rings ]That’ll be one of your clients calling in with a fourth one.

TYLER: Yes, yes.

One we didn’t think of. “An Irish accent.”

TYLER: Yeah. Did ye ever think aboot buying me dinner?

Oh, Lordy. In Lakewood, California, I’m Ca…oh, he also does an Inspector Clouseau as well.

TYLER: I wishing to have speaks with you on the phone.

Told you. I’m Cash Peters for Marketplace.

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