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Etiquette For Counters

16 November 1999

Often, I see questions from counters about the proper way to behave when you find that you are playing at the tables with another card counter. After consulting with several experts on etiquette, I was able to distill the advice they gave me into ten simple rules that will insure a warm welcome at the tables from your fellow counters.

  1. When you sit down at the table, ask him what the count is. This will signal to the other counter that you too are a counter and a brother-in-arms. He will certainly appreciate knowing that he has a comrade at the table.

  2. Make sure you tell the dealer and the other players at the table that "this fellow knows what he is doing. You should watch his play and learn what you can." This way, you will bring the attention of the table to the expert play of your fellow counter and make him look good to the other players and gain respect in the eyes of the dealer, a gesture sure to be appreciated.

  3. Ask the pit boss if he will get a rating card for your new friend. You don't want him to miss out on any good comps.

  4. If he gets up for a bathroom break, ask the dealer to "suspend play until he returns." See if you can get the other players to agree. Say loudly: "We don't want him to miss out on any plays because we all know that counters need to get in the maximum number of hands.

  5. If someone gets upset over a strategy variation by the counter, tell that person, "Hey, he knows things that you don't know and you shouldn't be upset." He will certainly be happy that you have helped him out with the other players.

  6. If you lose the count, ask him to help you out. After your warm welcome and thoughtful actions, he will be glad to assist you and this will let him know that you think he is the true expert here.

  7. When he raises his bet, call the pit boss over and point out the big bet. This will help him to get comps and a high rating from the pit. Your kindness will surely not go unnoticed.

  8. Make sure you tell the pit boss that even though this player is good, you don't think he's a card counter. This additional cover will be most helpful to him.

  9. If the count gets high and he doesn't put out a big bet, gently remind him that it's a good time to get the money out. He will surely be grateful for this reminder.

  10. When he gets up to leave, as he most assuredly will, get up and follow him to the next table. He will certainly want your company and kind help. If he takes a swing at you, please try to remember that counting can be quite stressful and sometimes, these things just happen.

Just to be sure, I ran this list of rules by the Casino Owners Association. They liked them and said that they hoped all players would follow these simple rules, since it would make their job much easier.

Now I'll take my tongue out of my cheek and I hope to see you next month!


For more information about blackjack, we recommend:

Best Blackjack by Frank Scoblete
The Morons of Blackjack and Other Monsters! by Frank Scoblete
Winning Strategies at Blackjack! Video tape hosted by Academy Award Winner James Coburn, Written by Frank Scoblete
Bootlegger
Bootlegger is a frequent contributor to various gaming web pages on the
worldwide web. His intelligent, insightful opinions and analyses have gained him quite a reputation in cyberspace as an expert who knows the games and understands the gambler.
Bootlegger
Bootlegger is a frequent contributor to various gaming web pages on the
worldwide web. His intelligent, insightful opinions and analyses have gained him quite a reputation in cyberspace as an expert who knows the games and understands the gambler.