How Do You Interpret?
A few Decembers ago, Bonnie and I returned from a comped cruise (benefits of video poker and casino promotions) on the Norwegian Dawn. Laundry service was included in the package and on one particular night both of my long pants had been sent to the laundry. I had expected the laundry to be returned prior to dinner, but such was not the case. I had some clean Bermuda shorts, but no long pants.
There are two main dining rooms on the Dawn — the Venetian and the Aqua. The Venetian is larger and has windows overlooking the bow of the ship, but the restaurants themselves share the same galley and have identical menus. As far as most of the passengers are concerned, the two dining rooms are equivalent.
The wording in the “Freestyle Daily” (the newsletter which lists when all the activities on the ship will take place) said, “Shorts are permitted in all outlets except Venetian and Le Bistro.” Bonnie interpreted this to mean that since the Venetian and Aqua are equivalent dining options, if shorts aren’t allowed in one then they also aren’t allowed in the other. I interpreted this to mean that the Aqua wasn’t specifically listed in the venues that excluded shorts, so therefore they allowed shorts.
Don’t Always Settle
Bonnie wanted to “settle this” by asking beforehand at the Aqua whether they would allow shorts. I told her, “Absolutely not!” It made no sense to me to allow them an extra opportunity to rule against my desires. It’s far better, in my opinion, to show up in shorts with my Freestyle Daily in hand. If they told me I couldn’t wear shorts, I would show them the rule that said I could. They could take it as high as they wished but the printed rule was very clear.
(Well, if the captain came down and said, “Sir, if you continue to insist on being served here we will drop you off at the next port, Roatan, and you can find your own way back to New Orleans,” I would back down. But I very much doubted that it would ever come to that.) It could be that beginning on the next cruise the rule would read “except Aqua, Venetian, and Le Bistro,” but that’s not how it read on our cruise. (In my opinion, Cagney’s Steakhouse, which is the nicest dining facility on this ship, should also have a “no shorts” rule. But it didn’t. I have no idea why.)
When I have a disagreement with someone and we “argue,” I try to do so graciously and politely — yet firmly. Being rude and/or antagonistic is a way that can lead to winning the battle but losing the war. Usually — certainly not always — I succeed. Bonnie hates these kinds of confrontations; whether I’m right or wrong; whether I win or lose. She would rather go along with the program and go out of her way to not make waves. She sometimes gets embarrassed by my “attitude problem.”
The Kind Of Attitude Problems That Benefit Video Poker Play
Professionally, this attitude problem has stood me in good stead. Most casinos don’t intentionally put out excellent opportunities (video poker or otherwise). To find good deals, you need to look between the cracks. In casinos, their basic program is that the players lose. I don’t like that program. Going along with that program isn’t a way to come out ahead. So I regularly look for exceptions and sometimes find them. And when I do find them, and I think the exceptions are to my benefit, I take advantage of them for as long as they exist.
As a practical matter, the Aqua was only a small step up quality-wise, from the buffet — where I would have been welcome to wear shorts. Still, I preferred the Aqua and the rules allowed it — why not get what I preferred?
Choose My Battles
Also as a practical matter, it makes sense for me to choose my battles. If I judged that Bonnie was REALLY, REALLY going to be upset by me having such a discussion with the Aqua management, I would have skipped going to the restaurant that night. After all, it was our honeymoon cruise and that was no time for a fight. (We actually got married in May, but she wasn’t healthy enough to go cruising then. We declared the two-week vacation to be our “make up honeymoon.”)
If I judged that Bonnie would only be mildly irritated but accepted these arguments as “part of the Bob package,” then I would go ahead as planned. While Bonnie was initially put off by my apparel, this time she was the one who agreed to laugh it off. She just shook her head, took my arm, and said, “Let’s go to the Aqua.”
[Updated June 2019]
Learn more about video poker:
Video Poker | Not All Lessons Are Learned So Easily – Bob Dancer
Video Poker | Have You Got What It Takes? – Bob Dancer
Video Poker | How To Learn The Right Lessons – Bob Dancer
How To Play Video Poker The Smart Way
How To Solve The Video Poker Puzzle
Video Poker | Listening To My Mentor – 10x Points At Borgata
Why You Might Be Disappointed With A Straight Flush Jackpot
Be sure to check out some of our other articles on casino loyalty programs & casino gaming:
Casino Loyalty Cards are Similar to Those of Airlines and Hotels — But Not the Same
Video Poker vs. Regular Poker
Why I Prefer Video Poker To Slots
Video Poker vs. BlackJack
Bob Dancer is the premier video poker writer and teacher in the world. He has created a number of how-to-win products available at bobdancer.com. He co-hosts a weekly radio show called Gambling with an Edge, which is also archived on his website. (The show is also available on iTunes.)