Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Tuesdays With Noirrie

It Takes a Thief

Clearly, I will never have a career as a thief. How do I know this? Because I recently attempted something that I wasn't even sure was completely dishonest and nearly fainted doing it! Here's the deal .... Steve's birthday was last week. Steve is both very easy and very hard to buy for. Easy, because he's not particular and will appreciate anything you get him. Hard, because he's not "into" anything really so it's hard to come up with something that will WOW him. One of the few things, other than just crash, he does like to do on his off time is play blackjack. But he very rarely does this. I think there's a part of him that feels guilty for leaving his family to go to the casino even though none of us minds at all. After all, it's not like he's doing it every night and losing the grocery money, KWIM?

SO, the boys and I agreed that wrapping some chips from one of the local casinos and giving them to him for his birthday would be an awesome idea. That way he'd go, he'd play, he'd have fun, and he'd not feel guilty.

SO, off I goes to the casino to get the chips. Now, the day before I had discussed this plan with a friend. She agreed that it was a great idea! However, she warned me that they might not let you take the chips out of the casino. But if I just stick them in my pocket and walk out, they'll never know, right? Well, maybe they have sensors in them or something and an alarm will go off like at Wal Mart when they forget to deactivate that little strip. Hmmm.

So, not wanting to break any chip laws, my first stop at the casino was the cashier who I asked if I could take chips out of the casino or not. He informed me that he wasn't aware of any rules against it. But then he proceeded to suggest that I more or less 'hide' them when leaving. AND, should anyone stop me, he never told me that. Ah. Great. Like I wasn't a bit paranoid before.

Naturally, the only open table at the time - 9 a.m. - was the one with NO players sitting at it and the pit boss standing behind the dealer. Gulp. Luckily, when I walked up to the table the PB drifted away. Nice. Maybe he's not paying attention now. (Yeah, right. Like it's not his JOB to pay attention!) I asked the dealer for four $25 chips. She goggles and asks me, "TWENTY-FIVES???" Sheesh. Like that's high-rolling or something? Or maybe I just looked poor. Who knows? But she took my cash and then, to my horror, called over her shoulder to the PB, "CHANGING ONE HUNDRED." Thank you so much for calling attention to me, Miss Helpy. After getting my chips, I asked for and was directed to the rest room. Step one in sneaking out.

This is where the paranoia really began to creep in. I escaped into the restroom where, by this time, two cups of coffee and nerves dictated that this be a legitimate visit. Once inside the stall I heard someone else come in. Did they send someone to keep an eye on me? Gulp.

The chips now safely hidden away in my pocket, I exited the restroom and unobtrusively strolled around looking at the various slot machines as if just checking them out. Now, exactly how unobtrusive one can be when one appears to be the only patron in the entire casino at 9 a.m. on a weekday morning, I don't know. But I was trying to tell myself that I was. On one aisle, there were two casino employees seemingly just strolling along and looking things over as well. Two aisles over, here they came again. Shit. They really do have people following me!

I turned a corner and ran into Levi's two soccer coaches who work there. I stopped to visit with them thinking this might throw off my pursuers. Of course, then I immediately wondered what they thought about Levi's mom hanging around the casino at that time of the day, but there was nothing to be done for it.

At this point, I decided to make a break for it. I strolled purposefully toward the exit, neither looking left nor right, just acting for all the world like I was doing nothing wrong. Naturally, the table where the goggle-eyed dealer gave me the chips was the one RIGHT next to the exit. And now the PB is standing with her again. Watching me leave? Knowing I have chips on me? Calling security? I kept walking, expecting at every moment to hear "Ma'am! Please stop for a minute!" Of course, I never did. Sheesh. They're just stinking CHIPS for heaven's sake. Chips I paid for. But the very idea that one may be doing something wrong is a powerful paranoia inciter.

Obviously, I will never have a career as a criminal. If something as simple as smuggling casino chips sends me this far over the edge, committing an actual crime would probably cause me to just fall over dead at the scene. Case closed.

I am glad to report that Steve loved the gift and happily trotted off to the casino that evening and played to his little heart's content, so I guess it was all worth it. ...... Next year he's getting a tie.


Brynn said...

That is absolutely hilarious!!! I could totally "see" & feel the whole thing, YIKES, I would have been the same way & sweating bullets too! I'm glad it all worked out though & he got to go enjoy himself.

Shelljo said...

I had to laugh, knowing I'd act the exact same way. Of course, since you posted this online, the casino police will be knockin on your door any minute now...you know, those casino police named...Bruno...

agent713 said...

LOL Great description. I can totally see you "sneaking" the chips out of the casino.

Cool gift too.