We enter the place, I feel as if I have walked through the doors of a fancy Las Vegas casino. I hear the sounds of cash flow. I hear dice thrown across crap tables with people yelling; roulette wheels spinning; and the bass from loud music throbbing.
Mr. Cool takes me on a tour, pointing, “Over there are the blackjack tables. There’s a table with powdered cocaine; feel free to help yourself. There’s an open bar, and we have nude girls entertaining guests with pole dances.” He continues, “All bets are made in cash; the minimum bet is one hundred dollars, that’s why everyone is walking around gripping stacks of one-hundred dollar bills.”
I decide to check out the scene, and in particular, scrutinize the dealers at the tables. I approach a blackjack table. I watch the action from between two players, trying to get a glance of what level of dealing talent Mr. Cool has employed. As I watch, the player to my right turns and immediately recognizes me.
“Hey, Richard!” He says poking me in the chest, “It’s me, Gruff! You’ve been to my place in La Costa.” Then I can feel him turn suspicious. “You’re not going to deal here now, are you?”
Shocked I was recognized, I plead, “No, no, Mr. Gruff.” I say stunned, “I’m not working here. I’m just a guest like you.”
“That’s good,” says Gruff, stabbing me in the chest with his index finger, “because if Richard’s dealing,” he taps himself on his chest and says, “Gruff is leaving!”
Whoa, I think relieved, I don’t think he would have been quite so friendly and forgiving if I had been on the other side of that table.