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so the bad beat jackpot at Harrah's accumulated to $250kish before it hit on tuesday. The backup jackpot was $123k and hit on Saturday. I'm not sure what the circumstances were for the first jackpot, but the backup jackpot was hit by two out-of-towners who were evidently big assholes and did not tip the dealers even one dollar of the money that they won. On top of that, they started to raise an escalation ruckus to Harrah's and complained about how they deserved to get comp rooms and shouldn't have to pay for parking. It was ridiculous.

Most people would give a healthy tip to the dealer. Numerous times when i was at a table and people were talking about it when it was $230k, someone said, "of course i'd easily tip the dealer about $5000. GIve something to the little people."

I was thinking about it earlier today and about the person that i am and what it is that i would feel like i had to do if i ever hit the jackpot if it got big. If it's as big as it was, then that's multiple annual salaries to me instantly (minus taxes) that i unexpectedly got out of the slimmest and luckiest of circumstances. it's not something i earned, it's not something i deserved, it's not something i expected. Therefore, merely tipping the dealer a hefty tip isn't good enough for me.

So the conclusion i came up with was that i'd have to give a little something to everyone who i've dealt with at the casino. All of the dealers, all of the waitresses, all of the floor staff, the chip runners, the massage therapists, and the cashiers that i've dealt with at the casino.

What i give would be a matter of calculation and depends on what i would hit of the bad beat and how many employees there are that i would want to pay, and how i would break down the percentage of who gets what. Suppose it was $230k and i was the "loser" of the hand, which would net me $115k. Let's also assume that 30% of that would get taxed, although i could see it happening either way where the casino could report it to the IRS post-tip or pre-tip. Let's assume that it's post-tip, that i could work out something with the casino or with an accountant to put some documents together to consider the tips tax deductible.

Now let's estimate how many employees i would be dealing with. I think that the dealers are split into three shifts, a day shift, a night shift, and a late shift, and most of them work 5 days a week. Sometimes the floor bosses double as dealers. Harrah's has 18 tables which are always full during the busy times, but have maybe only 5-6 tables during slow periods. If they need one dealer to go on break and also hold one in reserve, then that probably means there may be about 30-35 dealers in their employ. Let's call it 35. The drink staff is varied and there's usually maybe three that work the floor when it's busy, two when it's not, so we'll assume that maybe they have about 10ish people. Then you have the floor bosses, which are Rick, Ken, Jay, Cherie, the old guy whose name i don't remember, an asian guy who seems to get out right around the time i come in most of the time, and maybe two or three others, so let's call that 10 people. Chip runners and cashiers would also total probably something like 15 people.

Overall, then, that means that there are approximately 70 people that i would want to tip. If i were to tip $300 to everyone minus the dealer and throw in an additional $1700 to that dealer, that would leave me with $92k left which after taxes would still be $70k left over for me. and i think right now i could live with that.

now, it took a hell of a long time for the jackpot to get up to $230k. If i cut that in half and instead earned a bad beat of $60k, it makes it tricker because i'm not sure whether or not paying, say, a token $100 to everyone on staff is a better impact than the standard protocol of giving the dealer a healthy tip. But how much of a difference will it make to give the dealer $1k-2k vs. $5k? Maybe the answer is to give the dealer $3k which i hope they'd be happy with, and then i might as well give everyone else a token $100 for them to treat as a bonus or a gesture of good will since that still leaves me with $50k that after taxes would be $38.5k for me. Again, given the fact that this wasn't money i was expecting in the first place, something i didn't earn but just Happened To Hit, i think i'd be okay with that.

When it comes down to it, i'd be happy walking away with even $10k of a bad beat, so i don't really see giving away even 15% of what i get as much, even if that is $10k. (This would be a different story if i won that much money in a tournament.)

Am i strange for thinking like this? i dunno. it just seems to me that given the general attitude that i have about money which is to not stress out or track it too specifically and just ensure that i have all of the bigger picture stuff taken care of, that extra $10k or $20k or however much beyond the bad beat that i've earned would mean much more to other people than it would to me, even if it was split up into small parts. Maybe that's short-sighted of me, but if so, then so be it.

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Jul. 20th, 2009 04:25 am (UTC)
First off those out of towners are assholes, I hope they lose some all of their money.

I think I would tip the dealer also, a heavy tip but I never thought of tipping everybody else. That is a nice move on your part.
Jul. 20th, 2009 04:36 am (UTC)
tipping the dealer is standard and customary, but yeah. it doesn't feel like enough to me. *shrug*
Jul. 20th, 2009 05:29 am (UTC)
Sometimes I think about things really deeply this way, and then sometimes I don't. This isn't one of those things I've really put a lot of thought into. One time I was playing on a $2/$4 limit table, and I won a $110 pot. I tipped the dealer $3. If I won more than $50 or so, I tipped the dealer $1. If I had won some stupidly large jackpot for getting beaten out of a straight flush and I got $100k, I'd probably have just given the dealer a $1k chip and left. I don't think you're strange, but it *IS* awfully generous of you.

As for the selfish assholes... I wish they had just realized that winning a jackpot does not entitle you to be treated like a king. It entitles you to a large wad of cash that you don't deserve. -_-
Jul. 21st, 2009 12:14 am (UTC)
[If it's as big as it was, then that's multiple annual salaries to me instantly (minus taxes) that i unexpectedly got out of the slimmest and luckiest of circumstances. it's not something i earned, it's not something i deserved, it's not something i expected. Therefore, merely tipping the dealer a hefty tip isn't good enough for me.]

Well I actually think about this the opposite way. You ARE paying for the bad beat jackpot, quite heavily in fact, so when you win you did "earn" it. You are simply earning your EV back for every time your dollar gets raked into that particular jackpot. Of course since you win it so rarely, tipping based off it it is a fraction of a cent of EV every hand probably. Honestly I'd rather just tip the dealer for doing a good job dealing than some random happenstance luck I got.
Jul. 21st, 2009 12:22 am (UTC)
Thinking about this further, I think it's also kind of lame that people are EXPECTED to tip in this situation. The purpose of tipping a dealer is to ensure fast, accurate service, but winning a jackpot requires little to no extra effort on anyone's part, except maybe the manager. Doing so is certainly kind, but considering the casino already taxes the customer for just about everything they can, it just seems like an additional way to take away people's money.

The fact that it's going to a dealer is nice, and makes me significantly less ornery about it, but either way it's a problem that could simply be solved by the casino paying the dealers more and averaging out the tipping process. I should mention that I feel the same way about tipping in restaurants (even though I do participate in both activities out of custom).
Jul. 21st, 2009 01:30 am (UTC)
i feel rather differently about that sort of thing. i tip pretty healthily in restaurants, somewhere between 20-25% if i can help it. to me, the concept of tipping is one of building even a momentary relationship with someone, taking the Role out of the customer/business relationship and making it more about the individuals and about individual personalities. I as a pleasant and generous person allow Who I Am come out more as a result of my tipping philosophy. By nature i am a giver and one that expects very little in return. if by tipping someone i can give them even a small measure of happiness, then that's worth it to me. but i wouldn't have a context in which to allow for that potential if the tip wasn't expected.

i acknowledge that i'm paying an extra dollar out of every pot i win towards a bad beat, but i treat that as money that i forfeit rather than something that i expect an EV on in the Very Long Term. it goes against my nature to use that as a means to justify hitting a large prize under such rare circumstances and not giving something back.

i should mention for myself too that i have a similar attitude about lottery or winnings in general. If i were to win a lottery of millions, i'm fairly certain that i would find a way to give away 20% of it to people or to organizations that i know it would hold more meaning to than me.
Jul. 21st, 2009 01:46 am (UTC)
Make no mistake, I see things fairly similarly to you do in regards to tipping, I am simply against the fact that tipping is a convention. I'm not sure if I see your last point, about not having context for tipping if it weren't expected - if a tip is not expected and still received I would think it would bring about even more happiness. I just believe that tips shouldn't be expected to be a large sum of the server's income, and instead should be used either as a motivator when they do their job well, or simply as a kind gesture.

As far as simply treating the bad beat rake as forfeit, I can see that point of view but in that case I'd hold the casino in even lower regard since they are ripping me off quite a bit. It's already difficult enough to beat the rake as it is. Again it's not really the tipping itself I am against, it's the fact that convention states that if I do not tip then I am an "asshole".
Jul. 21st, 2009 01:50 am (UTC)
Just to clarify, my asshole comment isn't directed at you calling the people who won assholes. They actually sound like legitimate assholes. It's simply directed at the system since if I did not tip, many WOULD consider me an asshole.
Jul. 21st, 2009 01:51 am (UTC)
no, i got that distinction.

i have to think about it a little more, and right now isn't time for me to do it since i have a lot of deadlines to take care of. :)
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