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Monday, May 6, 2024

Savvy Silver Mining

Day 4 Friday Dec. 5, 1997

Started out as usual with nickel VP - 2nd hand hit 4 eights! I love starting the day with 250 greasy nickels.

Played more. While waiting for Karen in the women's room, I 'invested'

So many machines to play! There are the tendon-pull inducing red stools. View from Nefertiti's Lounge in 2002.

$10 in a quarter Bonus VP machine just outside the Pyramid Cafe. I hit 4 eights again!!! 250 quarters this time, or $62.50. Tried to parlay this on dollar VP and lost miserably. Such is Vegas. Karen won at quarter VP and we tried the dollars again. This time we won some - hit a flush, and 2 pair. Up $42.00. A great way to finance our VP and slot play.

We played a lot of quarter VP and at the end hit a bad streak. We found a nice quiet area behind the bar, next to the sports book at Luxor. Not much smoke there, quiet, with good tunes playing.

I decided to try the $5.00 VP again. I got a full house on the first hand for $45.00. Later I decided to go for it, and loaded up the $5.00 VP machine with five coins - that's $25.00 on one hand. I had nothing on the deal.

My hand quivered slightly as I hit the draw button. Hit a pair to get my money back, and cashed out. Then we decided to try 2 $5.00 coins at a time. I lost all the hands and lost my high roller stake. Was it worth it? I got to play a $25.00 hand for free and that was exciting!

Losing is never fun, but we had the chance of winning. It always seems like a good idea until your money is gone or if you win! I had no regrets. After all, its called gambling for a reason.

Why do they use the word 'gaming'? I hate that. Its GAMBLING. Tell it like it is.

In the evening, we went to Excalibur and played nickels. I found 10 quarters in a bin.

Karen played a Fastest Cash slot and jammed it. She dug in the coin slot (where it empties into the bin) and pulled out a few quarters. Then a slot tech came along and dug out a bunch of stuck quarters. He handed over $4.00 worth! Later I found a dollar credit on a Wheel of Fortune machine, and later a dollar coin in the bin of the machine next to it.

All in all we found over $10.00 in one night.

People, make sure you don't leave coins in the bin, or credits on the machine. And keep your eyes open - you'll be surprised at how much money you can find.

Tip - if I see a machine with a lot of credits on it, I put in coins of my own, play it, and then cash out. That way if you win, there are no arguments as to whose money it was. Money in the bins or in credits is technically the Casino's, according to their rules. However, I have never been hassled for scarfing up free quarters or credits. 

Back to Luxor to eat - Karen had pancakes and I had the Philly cheese steak with hash browns at the Pyramid. They make great hash browns there. Ended with a winning quarter VP session. Broke even for the evening at least.

Playing those coin droppers was a dirty business. The coins were filthy, coated with a combination of grime, grease, and cigarette ash. For some reason, smokers constantly used the coin tray as an ash tray.
Your fingers would get black feeding the coins in, and if you had anything to cash out, scooping them out of the tray into the plastic coin buckets.
If you had more buckets full of coins than you could carry, you could ask for help and someone would assist you to cart them to the cage or one of two or three booths set up for the purpose on the casino floor.
The dollar machines took dollar tokens specific to the casino, usually, and for those there'd be a supply of plastic racks. I think each slot held 20 coins and there were maybe five slots, so $100 in a rack.
You could stack these on top of one another to haul them to get cashed in (should you be so lucky).
Needless to say, I no longer, ever, play less than max coins in video poker. Rookie mistakes...
Near the sportsbook at Luxor was one of the Sigma Derby horse racing games, similar to the one upstairs at the D. Each casino pretty much used to have one of these, but they are extremely rare now. As in there's one left. Luxor's had been modified so that instead of horses, there were plastic racing camels on the track.
Speaking of camels, there was a talking camel in the walkway between Luxor and Excalibur, just outside the Luxor doors, by the Giza Galleria. Of course, a life-size fake talking camel was too cute and too much fun for corporate Vegas, so it disappeared along with so many other fun things.
It always pays to keep your eyes peeled as you wander through any casino. You never know what you might find. Once I spotted a $5 chip in Mirage. I strolled to the spot and put my foot over it and waited a while. Like a thief in the night, when the coast was clear, I pocket the goods.
On the other side of the coin, or chip, as it were, I once lost a $100 chip in the Cal. Some lucky bastard put his foot on it.


    1. I'm so happy you're taking this trip down memory lane. It has to be bitter sweet for you. We are looking forward to your posts to continue the story. Back in the day, we only knew her as Quad Queen, not Karen. Are you planning another Vegas trip soon?

      1. Glad you are enjoying the report. I have no plans for a trip.

    2. I went about once a year back in those days. Mainly played at Stardust because of the short pay straight flush on $5 JOB that avoided the taxable W2G. I know it’s only a .02 difference in return, but I was way overstraightflushed for whatever reason. I have collected one flushy card BTW. At the Boar’s Head bar back when the bartenders were great and the pay tables were full. Had many a $100 coffee back then. Good to see you are keeping’ on.


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