CASINO GLOSSARIES: CONTENTS
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Glossary of Casino Terms
By the Vindicator
© 2004 Blackjack Forum Online
B comp. Free beverage comp
Big. A term for $100, as in five "big" = $500
Beans. Slang for cheques
Bet spread. The difference between a player's lowest and highest wagers
Bird dog. See "Shill"
BFA. Black female adult
Black Book. See Excluded List
Bleed. The slow draining of the float or cheques tray by an advantage player
Bleeder. A winning player suspected of being an advantage player
BMA. Black Male Adult
Body talk. Non-verbal communication used by counting teams
Bone. A term used to describe a $1 value cheque, usually white in color
Brush. See "scratch"
Bullet. An ace card
Burn card. The first card off the top of a new shuffle that is sacrificed and not played (goes straight to the discard rack)
Burn joint. A casino where, due to the game rules or reputation of the dealers, a player should expect to get burned (get a bad game or run into cheaters)
Bust-out man. A dealer who cheats
Camouflage. An act to appear less of an intelligent player so as to remain welcome at a casino’s tables
Candy Store. A casino that tolerates advantage players due to ignorance or open-minded executives
Case bet. A last big bet in which a player bets all his remaining chips on a hand in an attempt to come back from losses
CC. Card counter
Cheques play. What's said by a dealer to the pit boss when a player wagers black cheques or higher.
Clay. A chip or cheque
Curfew. An agreed-upon time for team players to end a play session
Dame. A card of the rank of queen
Daub. A foreign substance used to mark cards, can be anything from professionally-made color tinge to human body oil to ashes from the ash tray
Dead hand. A round called dead by a pit boss due to a complaint, misdeal, etc.
Deal me out. A term used to tell the dealer that you do not wish to play this round, as in "Deal me out this round."
Decisions per hour (DPH). The number of decisions (win, lose, or tie) that a player makes during 60 minutes. DPH x # of players = HPH (hands per hour for a casino)
Defensive wager. A wager to reduce one's potential loss
Desirability index. Win rate divided by the standard deviation x 100 = The D.I.
Discard rack. Plexiglas housing (usually smoke or red in color) used to hold discards
Double down. A blackjack play in which the player may bet an additional amount up to his initial wager to receive one, and only one, more card on his initial two-card hand
Double up. To increase your wager to twice the previous amount
Drop. The total funds removed from the table games' drop boxes
Drop box. A self locking box locked to a games table that the dealer places all incoming funds into (outside cheques, cash, fill slips)
Drummer. A player who is tight with his or her money
Duffer. An inexperienced player, a.k.a. a ploppy
Dummy up. What pit bosses used to tell dealers when they wanted them to be quiet and deal
Dump. Said of a dealer who pays losing hands or gives away the hole card or hit card (intentionally). Also a term used by players to describe a table that is losing money to the players
Edge. The percent advantage, either for the player or the house. That is, the percentage of the amount wagered that the player or house can expect to win or lose, over time
EOR. Effects of removal
Even money. An offer of insurance from a dealer when a player has a blackjack and the dealer has an ace showing. Not always a sound wager. Also, a wager that pays 1:1.
Excluded list. The "black book," maintained by the state, of players who are not permitted to enter or play in a casino in that state
Eye. A respectable term used to describe the surveillance department or surveillance camera
F comp. Free food comp
Face chaser. Said by casino personnel of a player who increases his wager after numerous small cards (non-tens) have been dealt. Also a term used by advantage players to describe Griffin agents
Fade. Slang for covering action or accepting a bet, as in to "fade" a bet
False cut. When a dealer falsifies a cut to cheat a player
False shuffle. When a dealer mimics the motions of a real shuffle but retains a clump or the entire preshuffle composition of the cards
Fill. The act of replenishing the cheque rack on a table game with more cheques
Fill slip. The paperwork that must accompany the above-mentioned fill
First base. The first spot (furthest seat on the right) on a blackjack table
Fish. A ploppy or someone easily "hooked." A patsy
Fixed limit. The max wager a casino will allow or book on that game. Most states require casinos to post the table minimums and the fixed maximums.
Flagged. A player who is suspected of advantage play is "flagged" to be watched whenever he returns
Flasher. Said of a dealer who exposes his or her hole or hit card, sometimes on purpose to an agent
Flat store. A casino that cheats
Float. Cheque tray on a table game
Floor supervisor. A person placed in charge of a certain game area. Usually monitors four table games
Fluctuation. A term used to describe the roller coaster ride one's bankroll may experience during a session or multiple sessions
Foul hand. A misdealt round that gets called off
Front loader. A dealer that exposes her hole card when burying it beneath the top card
Front loading. A play that takes advantage of a front loader dealer
Gallery. Non-playing spectators
Gambler. A player willing to wager without an advantage
Garbage. The discards
GCB. Gaming Control Board.
Gorilla. A "big player," a.k.a. "money man"
Grand. Slang for $1000
Grave. The first shift of the day for casinos (starts at the end of the previous day, usually around 4:00 a.m.)
Gravy. A team's or player's overall winnings
Green. A $25 value cheque
Grifter. A term used to describe a cheater
Grift sense. That sixth sense good crossroaders have as to whether to continue with a plan or abandon it
Grind. Winning in a slow, small incremental manner so as not to draw any attention and make a profit over time
Gross revenue. Net win
Hand. The cards held by a player in one round of play
Handle. Total amount wagered in a casino
Hands per hour (HPH). The number of hands that a dealer can deal in 60 minutes, including to herself. HPH divided by (# of players + dealer) = DPH
Hard hand. A hand that can have only one total value, for example, a ten and a 7 = hard seventeen
Harrigan shoe. A shoe with a shield or horse-hair (bristle) covered opening
Heads up. Playing one on one with the dealer
Heat. Extra unwanted attention from a pit boss to a player who appears to be winning by means of advantage play
Heel peak. A method by which the dealer can peek the top card
HFA. Hispanic female adult
HMA. Hispanic male adult
High roller. A premium player, a.k.a. a "whale"
Hit. To request or deal another card to a hand. Also see "scratch"
Hold out. To hold out a card, a.k.a card mucking. Means to withhold a card illegally
Hold out device. A mechanical cheating device
Hold percentage. A casino's table games' win divided by the drop (buy-in) = hold
Hole card. The dealer's face down card
Hop. A cheating method in which cards are cut in such a way as to return them to their original pre-cut state
Hot hand. A run of high valued cards
House. Another term for the casino
Humps. A.k.a. "belly strippers," cards that have been altered by shaving the edges. Used in cheating to find specific cards
Hustle. Said of a dealer who solicits tips
Independent. A lone or solo card counter
Index. The printed values on the playing cards (2, 3, 4, 5, etc). Card counters also use this term to denote the count at which their playing strategy for a given hand changes
Index number. Card counter jargon used to identify the count for specific strategy deviations.
Insurance. A side bet that the dealer has a 10-value card in the hole when showing an ace for a top card. Pays 2:1
Jog. A method in which a cheating dealer marks a position in the deck or shoe; used to guide an agent to the place to cut
Juice. A term used to describe a casino employee who carries political weight or influence within the organization, as in "That boss has a lot of juice. " Also used as a verb, as in "He was juiced into his job."
K. Slang for thousand
Key card. A playing card used to predict an upcoming card or slug of cards, such as an Ace or clump of 10's
Key employee. A casino executive
Kibitzer. A non-stop talking spectator
Knave. A Jack
Knock off. A playing card marked by sandpaper (for cheating purposes)
Lammer. A chip used to identify the dollar amount given to a player under credit conditions for taking or paying back markers
Large. A term for $1000; ten large = $10,000
Layout. The green felt cover on the table made of a nylon weave with a silk screened custom monogram showing the casino’s name, rules, etc.
Limit. The maximum wager a casino is willing to book. Usually displayed on the table game plaque.
Locator. One who plays to the "Key Card," a.k.a. location play
Lock it up. Placing the cheques from a player’s lost wager into the tray.
Longevity. The amount of time measured in minutes, hours, days, weeks, or years before a casino gets wise and bars you
Luminous reader. Cards marked by special ink or substance that can only be seen with special glasses or contact lenses. Cheating
Marked cards. Cards that have been altered from factory standards in order to aid a cheater
Marker. A counter check made payable to the casino in exchange for cheques. Used for "playing" credit
Marker play. A player who plays against his own front money or previously established credit arranged at the cage
Martingale. A very old method of progression betting. A systems player.
Master report. The "rip sheet," or summary sheet, of all wins, drops, fills, markers, etc. per table. This report includes a report on each individual game
Mechanic. A dishonest dealer
Milker. A tight wad player
Money man. See B.P., a.k.a. Big Player
Money manager. A player who makes calculated wagers according to bankroll size, edge, etc.
Monkey. An Asian term for a 10 card
Mucker. A player who switches cards on a table--a cheating move
Mug shot. A picture of a suspected advantage player, shot taker, or cheater, maintained in a file by casinos and official authorities
Multi-deck. A blackjack game that has more than 1 deck in play at the same time, as in double deck, 6 deck, 8 deck
Mystic. An irrational, unreasonable player
Natural. A two card total of 21 in blackjack
Negative deck/shoe. A deck or shoe with extra high cards depleted so that the count has swung below neutral
Negative swing. A losing period
Nickel. A $5 value cheque, a.k.a. red cheque
No dice. Casino term for No Deal, no way, not going to happen, etc.
Nurser. A player who "sweats" his cards; a card fondler
Nut. The casino's overhead
Odds. A probability ratio, as in your odds of liking the movie "Stacey's Knights" are slim to none at best!
Office. A signal given by a cheat to his partner
OMA. Oriental male adult
On the square. On the up and up, fair, honest. Not crooked or flat
Opener. A table card used to counter/verify the cheque inventory when the table was closed. The opener and the closer should match
Original. The first two "original" cards dealt to a player
O.T.T. Off the Top, the first round after a shuffle
Our cheques. Said of a player who is wagering with money he or she won from the casino, as in "She's playing with "our cheques"
Outsider. A non-employee that works with an employee to embezzle/steal cheques from the table
No peek reader. An electronic card-reading device mounted on a blackjack table so that a dealer can check for an ace or ten hole card without seeing the actual value of the card
Pack. Deck of cards
Paddle. The clear plexiglas device used to push the currency (from buy ins and lost cash wagers) and fill slips into the drop box
Paint. Face card
Palming. Another term for mucking, mucker
Pan handler. A dealer who attempts to embarrass a player into toking
Partial insurance. To insure your bet for less than the full amount
Past post. To make a wager after the conclusion of the event wagered upon. Illegal cheating move
Pat. A strong two card total of 17(hard) or better, as in "a pat hand"
Payoff. The monetary amount one expects to receive upon winning the bet
PC. Hold percentage
Peek. To view the top card of the deck prior to dealing it. A cheating move
Pen. The area of the deck or shoe where the "sweat" or shuffle card is placed, a.k.a. penetration
Picture card. Face card
Pigeon. A sucker, easy mark
Pincher. Player who removes cheques from his wager after losing but before the dealer can pick up the lost bet. A cheat move
Pips. The spots on the face of the cards indicating their value
Pit. The area in which gambling is conducted; a.k.a. the Arena
Pit boss. An employee entrusted to oversee numerous Floor Supervisors in a pit
Pit clerk. Data entry clerk in charge of printing fill slips for the supervisors, marker input, player rating input, etc.
Ploy. A system or stratagem
Plus count. A term used to indicate that the composition of the deck favors the player due to an excess of ten value cards
Policy. A casino’s way of doing things: "It's not our policy to take personal checks"
Power of the pen. Having the authorization to comp at the expense of the department or the casino
Press it up. To increase your wager, a.k.a. double your wager
Presser. Player who adds cheques to his/her winning wager after knowing the outcome is in their favor
Procedure. A casino’s written rules that employees must adhere to
Progression. A playing system that entails increasing or decreasing your wager after winning or losing a hand
Prove hand. An action requested by a floor supervisor (or higher) for the dealer to "back out" the cards from the discard rack and restore them to the correct players
Pull through. A false shuffle
Punter. An Australian term for a player
Puppy print. The Ace of clubs
Quarter. A $25 cheque. Also see "green"
Quitter. A player who loses and leaves
R comp. Free room comp
Rabbit hunting. Part of the procedure a dealer goes through to check new cards prior to putting them in play--to check the front and back of new cards
Rag, or rags. To a card counter, low cards
Rail thief. Someone who steals cheques from casino players at the tables
Rat holer. A player who secretly pockets chips in order to hide his winnings from a casino
Readers. Marked cards
Red. A $5 cheque, also see "nickel"
RFB comp. Free room, food, and beverage comp
RFBA Comp. Room, food, and beverage unlimited
Rider. A player who stands behind a seated player and wagers on the same spot. In some countries, the larger bettor controls the decisions on the hand
Rim. Slang for a marker or credit player
Rim Card. An index card used to track a premium player's "rim" play
Ring In. To introduce an unfair deck into play to aid the casino, a.k.a. a "ringer"
Rip off. Slang for a ruse or sting
Risk of ruin. The risk or likelihood of a player losing all of his or her bankroll
Rolling. An expression called out by a dealer before turning a freshly shuffled deck on its side for squaring, as in "rolling the deck"
ROS. "Rule of Six." Applies to single-deck games. Dealer will deal 5 rounds to 1 player, 4 rounds to 2 players, etc. Always adds up to 6.
Rover. A player who roams around looking for an empty seat so that he can play
Rummy. An inebriated player tolerated only because he has funds
Run. A long or unusual winning streak
Run up. Any type of deck stacking (cheating)
Runner. A cheater who fails to execute his move correctly and therefore must make a run for it
Running count. A count of the card values as the cards fall before converting to a true count
Ruse. A plan or means of deception
Sanded deck. A deck that has been marked with sandpaper for cheating purposes
Sawbuck. A $10 bill
Scratch. An old term used to describe the action that a player performs to request a hit
Second base. A term used to indicate the playing position at the center of the table. There is a difference between a base and a spot.
Shaved deck. A deck of cards that has been altered for cheating purposes
Shift boss. A key employee in charge of all pit activity during his or her shift. The shift boss reports to the casino manager
Shill. A player who is paid by the casino and bankrolled by the casino to play at empty games in order to attract others into playing
Shiner. A mirror like device used by a player to catch the image of the dealer's hole card. Illegal under the device law
Shoe. A device used to hold multiple decks of freshly shuffled cards for dealing
Short lived play. Same as "short ‘n sweet" except that the player wins and then departs rather quickly. Also see the surveillance glossary at this Web site
Short ‘n sweet. A term used to describe the play session of a player who loses a lot of money rather quickly
Single Deck. A game dealt from only one deck
Snake bend. A card that has been marked for cheating purposes by quickly bending it from the upper left corner to the lower right corner
Snapper. In blackjack, any two card combination that equals 21
Soft double. A two card total that includes an ace that is doubled down on
Split. A rule option afforded by some casinos in which a player may take two identical value cards and split them into two hands (and wagers)
Spooking. Two players gaining an edge by having one see the dealer hole card (usually from behind the dealer) when the dealer peeks, then communicating the info to the other player.
Spot. The betting area or box in front of a player. First spot is to the dealer's left; then go clockwise to spot 6 (or more)
Spotter. A member of a count team who grinds away at a table and signals in the Big Player when the count is high
Stand. To refuse any further hits on your blackjack hand.
Standard deviation. A mathematical term for describing the variance of a game
Steamer. A player who is chasing his losses
Stiff. In blackjack, a two-card hard total from twelve to sixteen
Stiff sheet. A folded up sheet carried by the CSM (Casino Shift Manager) showing his or her shift's totals. Also see "Master"
Sting. See Ruse
Store. A casino
Stuck. To have lost money gambling, to be down, as in "We’ve got him stuck for $20K"
Suit. Slang for a casino pit employee
Sweat card. A plastic red, green, yellow, purple, or other color card used to mark the end of the portion of cards to be dealt in a deck or shoe. Indicates the "penetration"
System. To casinos, wagering or money management patterns erroneously employed by players to gain an advantage, in contrast with legitimate methods like card counting (casinos love systems players)
Table hopper. A player who hops from table to table to play fewer hands at a disadvantage
Tapped off. A dealer gets "tapped out" when relieved for a break
Tapped out. To have lost all your money
Tell. A facial expression (face dance) or gesture that gives a clue to an opponent
Theoretical hold. Percentage of wagering buy-ins that the house expects to keep on any given game or machine based on the house's mathematical advantage and game speed. Always an estimate
Third base. The last possible spot to the dealer's right on a blackjack table, a.k.a the last spot, or anchor
Tip. See toke
Toke. A tip (token of appreciation)
Tray. The float or tray on the table in front of the dealer that holds the house cheques
True count. Running count divided by the number of undealt decks
Truncating. To remove the decimal portion that follows an integer
TTO. This Trip Only is said when a player asks for an extension on a maxed out account. The casino may agree, but TTO
Turn. An action performed by a player to distract (turn) a casino employee. "Turning" is used for both legal and illegal purposes
Underdog. A player with a very small starting bankroll who builds it up to a small empire
Unit. Another term used for cheques or chips; 5 units could be 5 red, green, black, etc.
Vigorish. Slang for "commission," a percentage of a win that the house takes to get its advantage in some games
Walk. To leave a table game
Walked with. Said of the amount a player leaves a gaming table with, part of a dealer's report to a pit manager or higher, as in "He walked with $5K"
Warp. Cards that show a distinctive bend due to the dealers having to manually peek the hole card
Wash. A procedure that requires the dealer to "pizza wash" cards newly introduced to a game. The act of mixing the cards before shuffling by spreading and smearing them around on the table
Wave. The hand motion a dealer makes to offer insurance or the chance to wager prior to dealing a round
Wave off. A hand motion a player is required to make to show that he or she wishes to stand and wants no more cards
WFA. White female adult
Whale. Term for a premium player, a.k.a. high roller
Whiz machine. A fill, credit, and marker slip dispenser. It's like a Pez dispenser, except it dispenses casino documents
Whole 9 yards. A slang term for a "case" bet
Win. Gross revenue, also see "net win"
Win rate. The amount the house or a player expects to win per hour, based on game speed, dollars wagered, and advantage
WMA. White male adult
X-Ray. Said of a player (cheater) who can read the cards from the backs, based on such marks as lime shade, nicks, etc.
Yard. A $100 bill, also see Benji, C-Note
Zebra. Radio call sign for the surveillance department, as in "Security Officer Williams to Zebra One"
Zoo lander. Also a "Lookie Lou," that is, a non-playing, non-drinking, aisle-blocking, over-the-shoulder player who thinks he knows it all and tries to help you play your hand
Zuke. A tip, a.k.a. a "toke" ♠
[For a book with more information on casino personnel and procedures, see The Card Counter's Guide to Casino Surveillance by D.V. Cellini, an Arnold Snyder Professional Gambling Report.]
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