Systems Archive 4

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Funny you should mention Brylcreem

Posted by Rusty Starfish on 15 April 2002, at 1:56 p.m., in response to wait a minute sluggo..., posted by gehrig on 28 March 2002, at 9:19 p.m.

I have a $10000 hairpiece I bought on-line. It looks great, just like my hair USED to look.

I was bummed out for a while because that purchase took a significant chunk out of my BJ bankroll. I got to doting on that a lot, and finally came to the conclusion that it would only be fair if the toupee helped pay for itself so I could get back to playing blackjack. So here's what I did:

I was able to purchase additional long strands of the same batch of hair from the toupee-maker. I took the ten longest hairs and tied several knots in each one, with each knot about one-half inch from the next. I then took a needle and threaded each of those ten hairs into my toupee, all in roughly the same area on the right side of my head, just above my ear. The hairs aren't secured to the "mat" of the toupee. I made holes big enough for them to easily slide back and forth in and out of the hairpiece, so when the dealer shuffles, I "reset my counters to zero" by gently pushing the hairs back up under the "mat".

It took a lot of practice at the kitchen table, but after a couple of weeks worth of hard work, I became extremely proficient at pulling the hairs gently out of the toupee and feeling the knots to keep count of the cards. Each hair was arranged to represent each rank of cards in the deck. At one point, I repositioned the hairs into groups to make the task a little easier. I grew my thumbnail and the nail on my middle finger to almost a half-inch in length to help me in both finding and feeling the knots.

You won't believe how well my little system works. I can sit and play for hours at my local casino, and so far no one has caught on to my method. I prop my right elbow up on the edge-of-table cushion, then rest my head in the palm of my right hand, as if I'm despondent or bored with the game. Meanwhile, my fingers are moving like a stenographer's on a typewriter, quickly modifying my hair-abacus to keep up with the count. To the dealers and pit-bosses, it just looks like I'm an addicted gambler with a nasty nervous twitch.

A few months back, my local casino dropped single- and double-deck BJ, switching to 6-deck shoes. I was probably one of the reasons for the switch. I nailed 'em for thousands with my Protein Power counting system (I bought the trademark). I tried to add more knots to those extra long hairs I'd bought so I could keep up with the 6-decker, but found I could only last about one-third of a shoe (approx 2 decks) before I'd used up all the knots (especially on my "ten-hair"). A couple of times, hairs have actually come loose from the toupee (I'd used up all the knots) and floated down onto my cards on the table! Once I thought I was busted for sure, but I was able to pluck the hairs off the table before the dealer could see them. I could tell that a player sitting next to me noticed the knots, and his eyes grew really big. I thought the gig was up for sure. I motioned for him to keep quiet and thankfully he did. I gave him $100 in chips when he left the table later on. He knew why I gave him the tip, too. He just took the chips and walked away without saying anything.

Anyway, to handle the six-deck shoe, I had to purchase another toupee. This one has shoulder-length hair, and is bleach blonde! I told some of the dealers that I'd just joined an oldies "retro" band in my hometown, and the toupee helps complete the look when we do oldies shows. They know it's fake hair; I'm not really trying to fool people that way.

Now these longer hairs were the perfect solution for the longer play of the six-deckers. I was able to tie 60 knots into my "ten-hair" although the knots are slightly closer together now. I thought that the extra shuffling time involved in a shoe game would allow me more time to "reset my counters to zero" than the single- and double-deck games did, but the sad fact is that it takes proportionately longer to push all ten of my long-ass counting hairs back up under my mat between shoes. Occasionally I even have to sit out an entire shoe and run off to the john to complete the reset. Then I return and wait for a new shoe to start. I call this technique "long-ing out" and "long-ing back in". That term came to me when I still had the short hairs and was trying to acclimate myself to the shoe games. Sometimes, like when I reached the 17th ten using my first Protein Power toupee, the "ten-hair" would slip out of the toupee because I'd used up all of the knots. I referred to that as "long-ing out" of a shoe, because it meant that I had to leave the game for repairs. I originally used the terms "banging out" and "banging in" since I was sort of using bangs (of hair). Get it? But I like "longing out" better now.

A recent development has caused me to look for other methods of keeping count of the cards. I've developed severe rheumatoid arthritis in both hands. It's now become nearly impossible to use my Protein Power hairpiece effectively any more. I'm having a local denture lab install toggle switches into the insides of all my false teeth. I've provided him with a layout showing how I'd like each tooth to look. The part of the dentures which rests on the roof of my mouth will hold a small computer chip and watch battery. A friend of mine who is an electronics whiz is doing the programming and wiring for me. I hope to have my system up and running in a couple of months. I've already begun to practice using an old, cracked set of dentures. My tongue has never been so powerful from all the workouts, although I've developed huge gaping blisters on the tip of my tongue.

This system may not prove to be as effective as the hairpiece was, if the pain in my tongue doesn't fade fast. I'm already working on my next idea, though. I hope to have sensors imbedded into the back side of my colostomy bag. While using my hairpiece, I noticed that I tended to lose the count a lot when I'd reach down to adjust the bag whenever it became uncomfortable or felt like it was slipping down in my pants. Nobody ever questioned that constant move, either, so I think I can get away with installing a device in the bag, along with a vibrating "buzzer" to indicate the correct play. I'll trademark this one, too. I'll call it "My S*** Don't Stink", unless I can come up with something better by the time it's ready to be put to use.


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