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Vera Sanchez
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The "Mean" Priest and Dice Control Teams

6 October 2012

My dad is the only person I know who told a priest to go to hell. Years later after I was born, he shared, “Vera, the priest said the devil was inside of me because I was left handed, so I told him if that was the case, than the devil is inside this church.”

Ralphie disclosed the above while reaching into the left pocket of his Capri shorts. His beige cutoffs are worn over his morning sweatpants, “And I said this in front your mother and your conservative Catholic grandmother.”

He takes out a plastic bottle of Popov vodka, untwists the red cap and continues, “Vera, its ok for people to grow long hair because Jesus never had a crew cut or Mohawk. His hair is down in every picture.” Ralphie, who hasn’t shaved in a few months and wears a wrinkle floppy hat he got complimentary for attending a Padres home opener game, swigs the liquid from the pint, yells at the bitter taste, and places the economical pick-me-upper back in his pocket.

One time, I bought him a bottle of Smirnoff as a payment for watching my dog while I was at work. Without taking the container out of the brown bag, he drank a mouthful, made a sour face, and asked why I bought him the “good” brand.

“So the priest didn’t like your hippie comment about Jesus,” I reassure.

“No.” Ralphie replies, whipping his mouth with his dominant hand. “Have you ever heard a snake talk?” Without waiting for my answer, “They hiss; they bite; they slither, but they don’t talk. Paaaleaseee!” He spits, exaggerating the intended polite word. Around his neck, the blue and gold Mardi Gras beads tangle with his San Diego Charger lanyard, which has no keys attached on the hook.

Ralphie continues with another rhetorical question, “Aren’t apples supposed to be healthy? We need to eat them every day!” He shouts this, pounding his wooden cane repeatedly on the hallow floor in order to formulate his point.

“The priest was upset because you questioned the Holy Bible.”

“Not quite,” Ralphie jams his hand on his hip and dramatically leans, taking pressure off his right leg.

“So tell me Ralph,” I’ve been calling my dad by his first name since I was in a crib. “Why did you tell the priest to go to hell?”

“Because,” he slobbers in a sassy tone, “I did the sign of the cross with my left hand, not my right hand. I tried to explain I do everything with my left hand. I write with my left; I kick with my left; I throw a blow with my left.” He punches the air still holding his cane. “The church threw guilt down my throat because I’m not right handed.”

“It’s not like I was going to change the prayer," he continued. "It’s not like I was going to say Christ sits at the left hand of God.” This coming from the same man who receives communion wearing a yamaka. They sell them two for five dollars at the corner store. Ralphie believes this is a worthy bargain.

“Look at all the left handed presidents: Obama, Clinton, Ford, Bush.” He pauses to lick his chops. “Not the Bush son,” he flaps his Daffy Duck lips, “but the old man.”

Ralphie raises his arm, tilts his head back, and drips the last of the distilled liquor on his tongue, “All my sins are forgiven.”

Roughly, 10 percent of the population is left handed, a very small portion one would agree. In baseball, every major league team has at least one left handed pitcher. If not, that deprived team is at a great disadvantage.

If you are serious about forming a dominant dice-control team to take on the casinos, it’s going to take some serious searches to find interested and disciplined advantage players who are left handed. Not only must they understand the game of craps, but they must demonstrate skill in influencing the dice. In the Golden Touch dice control classes there will only be a few lefties in classes of 50.

However, southpaws add tremendous depth to any craps team, making the team a true threat to the casino. They will be able to throw from position SR1 and SR2 [editor’s note: the immediate two right sides of the stickman], while the right handers throw from the opposite side of the stickman, SL1 and SL2. Skilled left handers are out there. It will require time, and patience to find them, and as Ralphie shows us, left handed people are a very rare breed.
Vera Sanchez

Vera Sanchez is a member of Golden Touch Craps and belongs to a distinctive group in the largely male world of craps – a female dice controller and advantage player. She was born and raised in San Diego. She graduated from San Diego State University with her bachelor’s degree in English and later with a master’s degree in Education. She is currently a high school English and Literature teacher in the San Diego area as well as a basketball coach.
Vera Sanchez
Vera Sanchez is a member of Golden Touch Craps and belongs to a distinctive group in the largely male world of craps – a female dice controller and advantage player. She was born and raised in San Diego. She graduated from San Diego State University with her bachelor’s degree in English and later with a master’s degree in Education. She is currently a high school English and Literature teacher in the San Diego area as well as a basketball coach.