McGee: Hard work only sure payoff

By Grant McGee: Freedom columnist

I know this guy who’s been doing some traveling to casinos here and there around the country. He feels so good about his gambling skills that he said this is the year he’s going to declare himself as “Professional Gambler” on his tax forms.

I once thought about a career as a professional gambler.

It was back in my truck driving days, I was hauling a load to

Vegas.

I resolved to win big at blackjack. I could feel it in my bones, I was going to be a professional blackjack player.

I rolled into Las Vegas, driving by the big places: The Bellagio, Caesar’s Palace, Mirage and that place where a big beam of light shoots from a pyramid into the night sky, The Luxor.

I didn’t stop at any of them. Instead, my big-time gambling career would start at a truck stop blackjack table.

I parked my rig and moseyed inside. I sidled up to the blackjack table.

“How do you play this game?” I asked the dealer.

The dealer was a bit older than me; OK she was way older. She had a few wrinkles and looked tired. Her cigarette smoke made her eyes squint. “You ain’t serious are ya?”

“Yeah.”

She explained how the game was played. I was ready to go. I bet $2.

“Ooh, big spender,” she said.

I lost. This was no way to start a big-time blackjack career.

“Another go round Mr. Big Spender?”

I put down another $2 bet.

“Woo!” she exclaimed.

I won $4. I decided to quit while I was ahead.

I thanked the dealer for her time.

“Come back and see us again Mr. High Roller.”

I got back to my truck and hit the hay for the night.

Falling asleep I got to thinking that old-fashioned hard work wasn’t such a bad way to make money. It’s a sure bet.