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HOME > HI-ROLLER > Gaming Tips > A walk with the Captain

A walk with the Captain

7 November 2017

By Frank Scoblete

The Captain of Craps, the Atlantic City legend and my mentor, passed away on February 10, 2010, during a raging snowstorm in New York City. In ancient literature, great men are born and die with huge perturbations in nature, such as traveling stars, storms, earthquakes, blizzards and the like. The Captain’s death was appropriate then; the weather reflected it.

I wrote an article many, many years ago about a walk I had with the Captain on the Boardwalk in Atlantic City (my life is becoming too many “manys” now). We talked about a lot of things concerning gambling, craps play and life.

I wondered what it would be like to walk with him on the Boardwalk today. I am not a mystic or a medium and I therefore can’t conjure him forth.

But in my mind I can. So we took a magical walk along the Boardwalk, the Captain and me, and we talked. I am using much of what he said to me in the past as part of a current conversation although the words are mine.

FRANK: Captain, what do you think of the Boardwalk now?

THE CAPTAIN: The Boardwalk defines Atlantic City, always has.

FRANK: You do notice the difference from your time in the 1980s and 1990s?

THE CAPTAIN: The Atlantic City I knew came about first with Resorts and then there was an explosion of casinos being built in former hotels and also new properties being constructed. I think the early 1990s was a pivotal point. You had Taj Mahal, the closest casino to those mega-casinos in Las Vegas, and you started to see a large influx of East Coast high rollers who used to go to Vegas itself. Why fly across the country when you had a great casino town pretty close to home?

FRANK: What about now?

THE CAPTAIN: Well the old Golden Nugget is closed. (The Golden Nugget at the southern end of the Boardwalk became Bally’s Grand, then the Grand, and then the Hilton before becoming ACH and finally closing its doors.) I remember Steve Wynn and Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Junior. It was a great time by the shore.

FRANK: And Trump Plaza and Showboat.

THE CAPTAIN: My Crew and I used to play Showboat when it had so many table games. When it closed it was more a slot casino than the casino we loved.

FRANK: And the Claridge, where you taught me about craps and gambling in general, it is no longer a casino.

THE CAPTAIN: My favorite casino. When we played there it felt as if we owned the place. The Crew could basically fill all the craps tables. The Arm really made her name there.

FRANK: Was she the greatest rhythmic roller, as I believe she was?

THE CAPTAIN: There was no one like her. If craps were water, then she could walk on water.

FRANK: See down that way? That’s Revel, the greatest failure in the history of Atlantic City.

THE CAPTAIN: Looks like a tin can.

FRANK: What were the casinos you frequented?

THE CAPTAIN: Claridge, Sands, Golden Nugget, Bally’s Park Place, Tropworld [now Tropicana], Taj Mahal for a short while, the Castle [now the Golden Nugget], Caesars for a very short while and Resorts, the very first one. Rarely played Harrah’s or Trump Plaza.

FRANK: So just about all of them during your time.

THE CAPTAIN: Yes. We had a wonderful time, the Arm, Jimmy P. and the whole Crew. Those were the days. All gone now.

FRANK: How come you didn’t want any personal publicity about your gambling ideas and what you were able to do in the casinos? If I hadn’t written about you and your ideas they would have been lost. You could have been famous.

THE CAPTAIN: I just wanted to do what I did. I am happy you were able to write all the things down but I would not have done any of that. I lived my life and played my game and that’s all there is to it. I just wasn’t interested in anything else.

FRANK: So basically I had the big mouth.

THE CAPTAIN: You had the big mouth. I am surprised that my ideas have had such a powerful impact.

FRANK: And dice control?

THE CAPTAIN: I know a lot of people now try to be rhythmic rollers. Most won’t succeed. Gamblers want what they want and they want it immediately. All life seems to be waiting for this or that; you want to get older, you want to get married, you want to have a job, you want to have a house. For most things we have to wait. But with gambling, get-rich-quick seems to be the desire there. So rhythmic rolling is out once a person realizes it takes time and discipline. That might do most players in.

FRANK: Of your Crew, only the Arm and Jimmy P. did it too. I guess you can add Satch and me to that.

THE CAPTAIN: So that’s five people out of our group.

FRANK: Any last words to players out there?

THE CAPTAIN: Enjoy it, because nothing lasts forever. Now, Frank, I’ve got to get back to heaven – a craps game is about to begin.

Frank Scoblete’s newest books are I Am a Dice Controller: Inside the World of Advantage-Play Craps!, I Am a Card Counter: Inside the World of Advantage-Play Blackjack! and Confessions of a Wayward Catholic. Frank’s books are available on Amazon.com, Kindle, Barnes and Noble, and at bookstores. Visit Frank's website at www.frankscoblete.com.

This article is provided by the Frank Scoblete Network. Melissa A. Kaplan is the network's managing editor. If you would like to use this article on your website, please contact Casino City Press, the exclusive web syndication outlet for the Frank Scoblete Network. To contact Frank, please e-mail him at fscobe@optonline.net.

Frank Scoblete
Frank  Scoblete
Frank Scoblete is the #1 best-selling gaming author in AmericaFrank Scoblete is the #1 best selling gaming author in America. His newest books include Slots Conquest: How to Beat the Slot Machines; Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold'em, Omaha Hi-Lo and Pai Gow Poker!; Beat Blackjack Now: The Easiest Way to Get the Edge; Casino Craps: Shoot to Win! and Cutting Edge Craps: Advanced Strategies for Serious Players.

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