It’s amazing where important lessons come from. I’ve spent a fair few hours sitting at blackjack tables over the last few years and it’s taught me some things about life that I’d like to share with you.
You are playing your own game. It doesn’t matter what hand the person next to you has been dealt, your game is directly between you and the dealer. The person sitting next to you has to do what is best for their game and you have to do what is best for yours. That said…
It’s more fun together. Everyone has more fun when you get excited and cheer for each other’s success, even if you’ve been dealt a crap hand. Your time will come for everyone to cheer for you. If this isn’t happening, find a different table.
Sometimes you lose. Even when you get dealt a great hand, you play it right and the odds are in your favour, sometimes you lose. It sucks. You remember and notice the times that dealer gets a 7 card 21 or something equally ridiculous and you think it has to be fixed, or the universe is out to get you, but it’s just the way the game works. Sometimes you’re going to lose, but…
There is always a chance you’ll win. Whatever you’re dealt, there is always hope. Sure the odds might be stacked against you this time, but until you’ve busted it isn’t over.
Players come and go. There is only a certain amount of seats at a table and people come and go. You might sit next to someone for 2 hands or 200 hands but each person has an impact on your game while they are there.
You make bad decisions when you’re drunk. That’s why the house offer you free drinks – the establishment don’t necessarily want you thinking straight and making wise choices, it’s more profitable to them when you don’t.
Take regular breaks. Get up and go for a walk, see the sights, have a snooze and a snack. The game will go on without you just fine and you can step back in when you’re ready.
Playing is more fun than watching. Sure you can stand and watch over your partners shoulder while they play and that can be entertaining for a while, but the real fun is in playing the game for yourself.
Start before you feel ready. It doesn’t matter if you don’t know how to play well, or at all, throw yourself in and give it a go. The people around you will help you out and you’ll learn as you go. There is only so much you can learn from a book, it’s all in the experience.
Don’t be scared to move on. Whether things are going well or really badly, walk away and play a different game if you want to. You are not stuck to your chair.