I’ve been around gambling casinos and craps tables for more years than I care to remember. I’ve seen some hot shoots that made men hundreds of thousands of dollars, and cold tables that would freeze anything in sight.

In the end, it’s not only a matter of luck, but a matter of preserving your capital so that when that hot roll comes and the dice go your way, you have sufficient cash to back up your play to the hilt.

Once, going through a Strip hotel, I saw a dealer I had been instrumental in getting a job for at a smaller Strip hotel. He was living with a woman friend of mine, and she had a small kid and asked me if I could help him.

I knew a number of casino bosses and presidents of hotels, and went to one, introduced this man, who I’ll call Jake, to the president of the casino. The president owed me a few favors and agreed to have Jake audition as a craps dealer.

The audition went well. By audition, I mean just what the word implies. It’s not the same as trying out for a part in a Broadway play, but there is the same result if you succeed. You get the job.

Jake was allowed to become a dealer on a crew for an evening, and his work was examined by the pit boss. Jake had been dealing at a small casino downtown, then lost the job, or so he claimed, to politics going on in the craps pit.

And I liked the woman he was living with and knew what kind of struggle she had had just to bring up the little girl. So I was happy he got the job. The casino had some high rollers, and the tokes were good here, and sometimes extraordinary, if a rich local guy got a hold of hot dice and made his hundred thousand or more.…