The Casino Environment
Casinos go out of their way to create attractive, appealing and often unique environments. No expense is spared to create an environment filled with hospitality and enough other attractions to rapidly put you in a daze. In addition to the constant racket created by the slot machines, you will see dazzling lights, custom designed carpets, and scantily clad cocktail waitresses who will bring you free drinks just for playing a game. You will see players with piles of chips in front of them enjoying extraordinary runs of luck. On top of all this, you are presented the charming prospect of making huge amounts of money in just a few turns of the card, spins of the wheel or rolls of the dice.
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When you walk through a casino, you will notice that there are usually no windows to the outside and no clocks visible. This is part of the illusion created for you. You have entered a land where time doesn't matter, within its own protected cocoon, well insulated from the realities of the outside world.
Casinos want you to be undistracted by outside influences when you are risking your money. Even more, they want you to become so beguiled by the games offered that you lose your sense of time and the money you are risking. Casino checks or chips help create part of this illusion, as they do not seem as real as currency.
Casino wins don't seem quite real when they only consist of piles of chips. Losses can be shrugged off until you run out of chips.
All of this is designed to trigger your compulsive nature. You may feel that in this timeless wonderland, lady luck is just waiting to bestow great sums of money on you.
Many persons who travel to casinos find that they have trouble even sleeping while in a casino. They can't bear to think that they might miss out on all of the action happening on the casino floor.
A few years ago, my aunt, who was nearing ninety at the time, visited Las Vegas with one of her grown children and his family. My cousin, Jim, had made sure that his mother was nice and secure in her room at about 10:00 p.m. He went downstairs to play a little longer. After a very successful blackjack session, he decided to have a midnight snack in the coffee shop and thought his mother might like to join him. He debated waking her, but finally decided to call her anyway - after all this was a vacation and normal rules did not have to apply.
He got no answer when he called her room. He called his own room next and spoke to his wife, Ann, asking if she had seen his mother. But Aunt Angie was nowhere to be found.
His anxious wife met him in the casino. They checked the coffee shop, thinking his mother might have decided to eat a snack. She wasn't there. They walked up and down numerous aisles between hundreds of slot machines looking for Aunt Angie. She seemed to have pulled off a very successful disappearing act.
They were getting ready to go back to their room and decide on their next course of action when Jim heard a familiar voice coming from the craps pit.
"Gimme a big seven, come on baby. Great, now how about an eleven."
They saw that Aunt Angie was rolling the bones at a crowded craps table. The players were two deep surrounding the table with bets stacked on almost every square inch of the layout. Angie was on a hot roll and there was no holding her back. She almost seemed to be in a daze, calling for her favorite numbers. When the dice were passed back to her, she would swoop them up, shaking them vigorously in her right hand then releasing them in a graceful arc usually followed by screams of delight from the crowd as more bets were won.