A question from one of my readers: “I’m in a terrible losing streak. What’s the longest losing streak you’ve ever had?”
Good question! People sometimes think Brad andJean Scott is known as the "Queen of Comps" and encourages smarter casino gambling. She appears on network and cable TV, especially on the Travel Channel. Her down-to-earth practical suggestions will save you both time and money in your quest to make your trip to the casino more fun and more profitable. Jean's website is www.queenofcomps.com I win all the time; they think anyone who writes a gambling book or articles about video poker must be an expert, and a gambling expert must know how to win. Well, that’s right and wrong. We ARE winners- the bottom line is that we win more than we lose over the years.
However, when I looked through the gambling logs we keep for each year (our IRS evidence), I found that since l997, we’ve had at least one losing video poker quarter (three-month period) per year, and sometimes two. Although you’ll lose, on average, in two video poker sessions out of three, a losing quarter is three months of play with A LOT more losing sessions than winning ones.
What’s more, right now we’re in the worst losing streak in our 17 years of gambling. We’ve had three losing quarters in a row. We’re also working on number four -- if this present one doesn’t turn around fast! And this is for playing nothing but 100+% video poker schedules.
Obviously, this losing streak is not nearly as much fun as our winning streaks of the past. But we try to take it stoically, knowing we’re still “ahead of the game” over the long run. We know that the longer we play, the closer we’ll come to the statistical win that can be achieved by choosing the right games and playing the right strategies.
There is one factor that mitigates the pain of a long losing streak. Cashback! There have been many times when slot club benefits, promotional bonuses, and mailed coupons have made up for a big percentage of our video poker losses or even completely wiped out the red ink on the ledgers.
Also, we no longer even count the value of comps. We consider our free rooms, meals, and extras gravy, but if we did factor them into the win-loss equation, we would never have a very long losing streak.
When I’m trying to convince someone to switch to positive-expectation games, I like to say, “You can’t beat the math; if you play long enough on the negative games and you’ll lose over the long run.” Brad and I turn this around and comfort each other when we’re in a bad losing streak, “When you play positive games correctly, you’ll win over the long term.”
In negative-expectation games, math is your enemy. In positive-expectation games, math is your friend. Because we play only positive expectation games, math is our friend. But it can began exasperating friend, because it can be so patient and work so slowly!
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