Infamous Quotes From Famous Card Counters...
  • Ken Uston,"It is a fact that the worst player in the world and the best player in the world could play at the same table for an hour or so, and the worst player could win and the best player could lose. This is because, in the short run, results can vary widely around mathematical expectation...in the short term, the typical blackjack player may win and the advanced card counter may lose...I lost $15,000 in two and one-half hours...Several years ago, I played full time for 22 consecutive days in some of the most favorable games I've ever experienced. This interval included five days of playing only positive four deck shoes...five days of a juicy single deck game...and six days of playing only positive shoes. At the end of 22 days, I was down $35,000...two of the best counters I know played in Europe for 61 days, full time, and were down $30,000...The same two players dropped $156,000 in two weeks in Atlantic City in late 1979 in a highly favorable game"(Million Dollar Blackjack, 1985 Edition, pages 31, 33, 125-126. Ken died at age 53 of a Heroin overdose in 1987).

    Lance Humble,"When Resorts initially opened in Atlantic City, three first-rate counters playing the Hi-Opt II lost over $60,000 in less than 3 weeks...there is new research going on concerning what happens when the count is extremely positive...the player is actually at a disadvantage when the count is a very high plus. This agrees with the feelings of myself and many other players who have reported often losing big bets in extremely favorable situations"(The World's Greatest Blackjack Book, 1987 Revised Edition, pages 92, 315-316).

    Arnold Snyder,"all blackjack books should have at least one chapter titled : "You Won't Win"...Nobody wants to hear it...When I self-published my first book, The Blackjack Formula, in 1980, and advertised it in Gambling Times magazine with the catchy, upbeat slogan: “Card Counters Beware,” stating in the ad that most of the blackjack games available in the casinos of the world were unbeatable with any card counting system, the publisher of Gambling Times, Stan Sludikoff, told me bluntly that I would never make any great amount of money trying to sell books with that type of pessimistic advertising...Stan was right. Seventeen years later, I’m still just scraping by, still delivering that vastly unpopular message... it is easier to make a living writing about this game than it is playing it. I have tried both, and I much prefer the keyboard to the cold green felt"(Casino Player magazine, November 1997).

    Bryce Carlson,"...books and articles on counting promote the game and produce far more losers than winners...I do not make my living selling books and systems on Blackjack. I make my living playing Blackjack and selling Apple and IBM computers through my chain of computer specialty stores...Bad runs of luck can, and will, sometimes dominate your results for hours and hours on end. I have personally experienced losing streaks that lasted for over 7,500 hands"(Blackjack For Blood, 1997 Edition, pages 83, 125, 155).

    Edwin Silberstang,"Every time the deck was favorable and I had a big bet out, I'd lose. When I had a minimum bet with a super-negative deck, I'd get a blackjack. It was awful"( Winning Blackjack For The Serious Player, 2002 Edition, page 197).

    Frank Scoblete,"The key to winning money in traditional blackjack play is to bet more when the count favors you, bet less when it dosen't. That's the BIG secret...you must escalate your bets in positive counts...the player's edge only comes in high counts...Lost 27 units in the blink of an eye...Count got high and I lost just about every hand...I lost 114 units because every time the count went up, I went down...This is becoming depressing. I win small bets of one and two in low counts and lose my high bets of 12 units in high counts...in the short run anything can happen"(Best Blackjack, 1996 Edition, pages 41-42, 217, 227, 229).
  • You forgot one...

    "You will win using this system." - Surfteq
  • Has anyone here seen the "Hot Shoe" Card Counter DVD???
  • From stainless steel rat,"COUNTERS have their troubles. If you read my post about 4 trips that have doubled a starting $1000 bankroll, you might appreciate this. I have not yet finished trial 5, but some results might be educational.

    For trip 5, I again started with a trip bankroll of $1000. This time things went pretty poorly from the get-go and I almost went bust. My low BR point was $35. I was in a HIGH count and was spreading $5 to $40 in a DD game. And I LOST hand after hand. I finally got ready to make my (what I assumed would be) my final bet, but only had $35 left. Pushed it out and finally won. A loss there and trial 5 would have ended at bust, after the first four ended in success. I am now back to about $600 and will continue the trial the next time I get away to play. Watching $1000 disappear can be painful, watching part of it "come back" can be a relief.

    These "swings" are pretty common, and that is a big reason WHY you need a decent bankroll to get over those valleys. $1000 is not very safe for $5 to $40 bet spreads (sometimes 2x25 rather than 1x40 if there are other players at the table). But I thought it would be entertaining to see what someone might be able to do with this starting point. Whether I will double this bank or not is a guess. I certainly came within a whisker of losing it all, and I am still down nearly 50% for the trial...

    On a non-counter tangent, my son doesn't count. Yet his last three sessions where he just flat-bet the table min, he has WON about $300 each time. He had seen me do this over and over, knowing I was counting cards, now he is convinced that he can go with me, play on his own, and make money NOT even playing BS. He hardly ever doubles, for example, because he remembers the painful losses (11 vs 10, drawing an Ace). Yet he has +still+ filed away almost $1000 in wins playing $5 shoe games. Of course he is headed for a train wreck, and I've warned him. And eventually he will "see the light".

    I have LOST 20 consecutive hands. Each painfully counted by my wife as she looked on. I have flat-bet in NEGATIVE counts and WON piles of money as well, where I should be getting my clock cleaned. I have LOST TONS of money on HIGH counts where I get the stiffs and the dealer draws nothing but 20/21 hands. But over the long run, I'm winning as I should be. But it is very easy to remember the bad, and forget the good, because the good is what is supposed to happen.

    More than anything else, this requires "intestinal fortitude". You will get plenty of "gut checks" along the path..."

    Thanx a MILLION stainless, that was Truly PRICELESS, you just MADE my day...I love REALITY quotes like this...shows how Truly "Paper-Thin" the Counter's "Advantage" Really is...LOL
  • Update. Was in Hattiesburg for a meeting yesterday and last night, decided to drive home after we finished about 11pm or so, and took the long way back via the MS coast. Played about 2 hours of heads-up DD, at three different locations total, and am now back to $1105 for the trip BR. I have played approximately 1200 hands. I have now won approximately $105. If you figure between 100 and 200 hands per hour depending on heads up or busy table, let's average to 150, which makes this about an 8 hour playing streak in total, I've made a whopping $12 per hour roughly. I got ahead early this morning during the last 45 minutes of play, so the previous 7 hours or so were "gratis" basically, as I broke even.

    This can _really_ be painful. And this "recovery" has been pretty remarkable since I was within one bet of being "all done" for trial 5. The saga continues although it will likely be a week or two before I get to continue the test. Seemed as though my luck turned at the last bet. Since then, in big counts, everything has worked. Insured bets saw the dealer have 21, high counts almost always (not always but almost) produced good results, whereas prior to that it was a bloodletting... Now that I've said that, the bottom will probably drop out again...
  • Another great one from stainless steel rat, "The single most profitable playing session I ever had, back in the summer, saw me win just over $9500 playing a $25 min DD game. I won almost every hand, LOW count, HIGH count, NEUTRAL count. I won over $500 before the count got above 0 in fact."
  • The problem with remembering such quotes is that it misses things like starting at $1000, reaching $2265, before losing it _all_ in a horrific streak. Everyone will have one of those huge wins if they play long enough. They will also have one of those huge losses as well. Long-term expectation is just what the math says it should be, if you play and reach the "long term". But the curve that settles in on the EV over time is going to be _very_ dynamic with its ups and downs.

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