PCF member dennis63 becomes a real casino dealer

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Today, I work full-time as a 911 calltaker and dispatcher in my home state.

I still deal blackjack at private events, and have dealt for a casino party company. I've pondered the idea of returning to the casino tables close to home, but haven't done that yet.
Sorry it didn't turn out more positive but from the early posts it seems it was worth while at first and you got out when it wasn't. My career is 100% project based and certainly some projects were not much fun at the time. I have always approached it as trying to make sure it was time well spent when I look back. As in I learned something new or now I know how to avoid a new kind of problem I never would have otherwise. Sounds like you were able to get a new fun skill out of it even if it didn't turn into a career. Plus you will never have to wonder "what if?"
 
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dennis63

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@dennis63 I thought you were LEO at one point, or did you retire
You have a good memory. I was a police officer for 25 years. I retired at the end of 2015. I worked as an instructor in the federal system for awhile while working part-time for my alma mater, the University of Delaware.

I applied to take the blackjack class in the summer, during a break from UD, thinking I could deal part-time, two or three shifts a week, and still work at the university. The casino really wanted you to work 40 or more hours per week, but did not deliver on promised benefits.

One day at lunch, I asked a floor supervisor, "So, I've been working more than 40 hours a week. When do they start paying benefits?"

His answer was blunt and honest.

"When they are told by the state that they have to." That could take a year, he said.

Shortly after, I heard that the university was looking for a police dispatcher.

Now I work inside a room that looks like the "MTAC" in the TV show "NCIS." (Giant flat screens with hi-Def camera images from all over the campus and city, and lots and lots of technology designed to be used on the worst day imaginable.)

The pay and benefits are good, and, as it turns out, much better than the casino.

I still miss dealing, or some parts of it.

Using the real stuff -- beautiful cards, a real two-shoe shuffling machine, and a float with $35,000 in face-value chips. You can't beat that experience.

(The chips at the casino where I worked looked like crap. The inlay was ugly, and the chips were worn, beaten, sticky and smelled like an ash tray. Smoking was allowed at the tables.)

It was fun, but after awhile, you begin to see all the negatives.

I would point out that most of the negative things I've mentioned here do not happen in every casino. The one I worked for was a subsidiary of one of the biggest gaming industry companies, but was their "low-end" brand.

For me, it was a great experience. It was not for me, but it may be exactly what someone else here is looking for as a career.

So if you are reading this thread and thinking about it, I would say try it and see. I did. Even though it was not my permanent retirement job, I don't regret doing it for a second.
 
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dennis63

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Side question, based off a topic from another thread...

@dennis63 , do you tip differently now, based off your experience?
Probably not. During play, I try to tip before a dealer change. If I am up and leaving a table, 15 percent of the win goes to the dealer. If they were a really good dealer, maybe more.
 

Anthony Martino

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Today, I work full-time as a 911 calltaker and dispatcher in my home state.

I was an on-call firefighter back in the early 90's and an EMD for a private ambulance company which held the 911-contract for the town back in the early 2000's. Have about 20 years of experience in "logistics" which not only involved managing ambulance crews but also a same-day courier company, a limo company, a security company and now I manage an auto-hauling company with 7-car haulers and tow trucks moving cars to and from auctions and dealerships.

It's all the same job, just a different "product".

Two stories stick out for me from my time taking 911 calls:


BYPASSING 911

I'm working a double shift and it's about 1 in the morning when a call comes in, but it's direct to our ambulance companies phone #, rather than 911. Girl says she found her boyfriend and he's unresponsive, needs an ambulance. So I ask if he took anything, she says she doesn't know, she just found him like that.

So in my head I'm thinking "ok, it's 1am, I find someone I care for unresponsive, do I:

A. Call 911
B. Lookup the # for a private ambulance company and call them direct

Well now, THAT doesn't add up. So why is she bypassing the 911 system? Probably because it's a drug overdose and she doesn't want a police response. So of course I call the Police and have them roll a unit, cause I'm not sending my crew potentially into harms way, and sure enough it was an OD

THE GLORY RUN

EMT's and Paramedics in our small town of 22,000 people got paid dick. It was like $13/hr for EMT's and $16/hr for Paramedics. And maybe $0.25/hr raise for each year of experience. For the amount of knowledge, training and retraining, certifications and responsibility on their shoulders it's really terrible. But a lot of them use it as a path to higher paying nursing or physicians assistant positions, or getting into higher-funded firefighting paramedic positions.

But anyway, the days can be a real grind. You have your "regulars" like a lady who would call screaming into the phone I CAN'T BREATHE! even though she's breathing just fine as she screams about it. So you'd roll a unit, she'd refuse service, and then an hour later she's calling again and you roll another truck.

But then there are the "glory" calls that EVERYONE wants to go on. We had a busy 4-way intersection in town where a transit bus, dump truck and a station wagon all got into an accident. I can't recall which, but one of them got flipped over and we had multiple injuries. So I'm on the horn calling all the nearby towns for mutual aid to the scene, and start rolling my trucks.

However, I held one Paramedic crew back at our station. The thing is, once a crew makes patient contact, I can't pull them from the scene. Since I've already called in mutual aid from surrounding towns, if I dedicate ALL of my own resources to this one scene, and someone has a heart attack elsewhere in town, I have no resources available to respond to it.

So obviously the crew that didn't get to go on the "glory run" was pissed about it, but I had to manage my resources at the time to be ready for the unknown.




As far as my time as a firefighter, I fought some brush fires and house fires, but I never rescued anyone out of a burning building or saved a cat from a tree or stood up in a fire and had beautiful blue eyes (I'm looking at you Backdraft!). I was also a CPR instructor but was fortunate to never have to actually perform it on anyone. We did have a family lose their house to a fire on Christmas Eve which was pretty heart wrenching, but no one was injured so at least there was that.
 

dennis63

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I was an on-call firefighter back in the early 90's and an EMD for a private ambulance company which held the 911-contract for the town back in the early 2000's. Have about 20 years of experience in "logistics" which not only involved managing ambulance crews but also a same-day courier company, a limo company, a security company and now I manage an auto-hauling company with 7-car haulers and tow trucks moving cars to and from auctions and dealerships.

It's all the same job, just a different "product".

Two stories stick out for me from my time taking 911 calls:


BYPASSING 911

I'm working a double shift and it's about 1 in the morning when a call comes in, but it's direct to our ambulance companies phone #, rather than 911. Girl says she found her boyfriend and he's unresponsive, needs an ambulance. So I ask if he took anything, she says she doesn't know, she just found him like that.

So in my head I'm thinking "ok, it's 1am, I find someone I care for unresponsive, do I:

A. Call 911
B. Lookup the # for a private ambulance company and call them direct

Well now, THAT doesn't add up. So why is she bypassing the 911 system? Probably because it's a drug overdose and she doesn't want a police response. So of course I call the Police and have them roll a unit, cause I'm not sending my crew potentially into harms way, and sure enough it was an OD

THE GLORY RUN

EMT's and Paramedics in our small town of 22,000 people got paid dick. It was like $13/hr for EMT's and $16/hr for Paramedics. And maybe $0.25/hr raise for each year of experience. For the amount of knowledge, training and retraining, certifications and responsibility on their shoulders it's really terrible. But a lot of them use it as a path to higher paying nursing or physicians assistant positions, or getting into higher-funded firefighting paramedic positions.

But anyway, the days can be a real grind. You have your "regulars" like a lady who would call screaming into the phone I CAN'T BREATHE! even though she's breathing just fine as she screams about it. So you'd roll a unit, she'd refuse service, and then an hour later she's calling again and you roll another truck.

But then there are the "glory" calls that EVERYONE wants to go on. We had a busy 4-way intersection in town where a transit bus, dump truck and a station wagon all got into an accident. I can't recall which, but one of them got flipped over and we had multiple injuries. So I'm on the horn calling all the nearby towns for mutual aid to the scene, and start rolling my trucks.

However, I held one Paramedic crew back at our station. The thing is, once a crew makes patient contact, I can't pull them from the scene. Since I've already called in mutual aid from surrounding towns, if I dedicate ALL of my own resources to this one scene, and someone has a heart attack elsewhere in town, I have no resources available to respond to it.

So obviously the crew that didn't get to go on the "glory run" was pissed about it, but I had to manage my resources at the time to be ready for the unknown.




As far as my time as a firefighter, I fought some brush fires and house fires, but I never rescued anyone out of a burning building or saved a cat from a tree or stood up in a fire and had beautiful blue eyes (I'm looking at you Backdraft!). I was also a CPR instructor but was fortunate to never have to actually perform it on anyone. We did have a family lose their house to a fire on Christmas Eve which was pretty heart wrenching, but no one was injured so at least there was that.
I hear you on all of that. Most of what we dispatch is routine -- students or professors locked out of dorm rooms or academic buildings, the occasional fire alarm. But we do get some serious calls, medical, psych, fights, etc.
 
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