Sunday, May 27, 2007


Casinos are just not one of those places I go. They're filled with two things I really don't do: gambling and smoking.

Last weekend, in between long hours of driving home, we started to get hungry for dinner. The billboards proclaimed a casino for miles in either direction, and we approached the casino right around the dinner hour.

"Penny slots?" I exclaimed at one such billboard. I didn't know there was even such a thing as a penny slot. I am a dyed-in-the-wool tightwad, and I know enough math and enough Skinner that I'm not really enthralled by slot machines, but even I can be persuaded to get out of the car on a long trip and part company with the six cents that have been rattling around on the floorboards for the whole trip. Thus, those traveling with me decided that it was time for me to try gambling.

So in we went. The casino had enough ventilation that it was more tolerable to be around smokers than it would have been outside, but I still didn't find it especially pleasant. There was a non-smoking room, so we scurried past the racket and into that area, small change in hand.

Just as I was getting up the nerve to part with one of these pennies, even as a cell phone camera emerged from my companion's pocket to catch me in the act, I noted that there was no slot on the machine that accepted pennies. Evidently, slot machines don't really have slots anymore, or at least these did not. Credits had to be purchased in dollar increments from the various machines scattered around. If I couldn't unload some pennies in a penny slot, I was not about to bother.

Dinner didn't happen in the casino, either. We saw neither entrees nor prices that suited us on the posted menus, so we turned around and did the non-smoking shuffle back towards the nearest exit. I think I'll unload the pennies in the donation jar at my local library, instead.

In the end, we ate a bit further along our route, in a café that wasn't a chain. Although the prices weren't much higher than those at the Burger King across the road, it had nowhere near the traffic of the other establishment. Instead, it had good, sit-down meals; a pleasant, attentive staff; and a berry cobbler I regret not having had the stomach space left over to try after an excellent sandwich. I'll have to remember the place for next time. It doesn't have a billboard.


Blogger Evil Director said...

You were in Reno and you didn't tell me???

31 May, 2007 13:18  

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