Friday, July 11, 2008

Bigots at the Muckleshoot

July 11, 2008

Yesterday was another profitable day, although I did give some back at the end when I ended up playing 3/5 spread limit with recent WSOP bracelet winner Rep Porter. He sat down at the table after his 75/150 table broke. He had over 4 racks of green chips (>$10,000), but our max buy-in was $300. You’d think he’d try to bully the table, but he was conservative and folded most hands. Is there a lesson there?

Anyway, I was playing earlier at a 4/8 table, and the dealer (not one of the regulars) was having a friendly conversation with the guy in the 1 seat. I was in the 2 seat and could easily overhear the conversation. In describing a recent purchase, the dealer, who I think is Native American, used the phrase, “I Jewed him down.”

I haven’t heard this expression in a long time. I’m not sure why it struck me so hard. I called him out. “Excuse me ________ (I don’t want to use his name because several Muckleshoot employees and regulars read this blog), but that expression is never acceptable.”

He looked at me and reviewed what he had said, which included repeating the phrase, just to make sure he understood what I was talking about. To his credit, he apologized so profusely that I eventually had to stop him and tell him not to mention it again. The apology is the reason I am not singling him out. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think this blog has the power to get him disciplined or fired, but I think I could make things a little uncomfortable for him.

Do people actually still talk like this in regular conversation? Would you say something in that spot? How about if you aren’t Jewish?

Anyway, go give congrats to Iggy. We all knew he was The Man, now he has a Main Event cash to prove it.


My final out said...

Unfortuanalty you do still hear garbage like that from time to time. And come to think of it, I hear it at the poker table more than anyplace else I can think of. I am not jewish or black or hispanic, etc. but when I hear these things it makes me angry. I speak up just to let the person know that it is offensive. There was a time I was at a bar with a buddy of mine who happens to be from India. He moved here when he was 2. My buddy got into a discussion with another guy about air travel. The guys freind looked at my buddy and said "It must be tough to carry those explosives through securtiy nowadays ha osama?" Before my buddy could even respond that guy was looking up at the ceiling. Sorry you had to hear that remark by the dealer no less, but unfortunatly there are still plenty of bigots out there.


Kerri Miller said...

I hear it every once in a GREAT while when I'm in Eastern WA/OR.

One thing I /do/ hear a ton of is sexism - as a Big Girl who rolls with the guys at the poker table, I think guys relax the politeness that they throw on when there's "a lady present" ...especially if they get into their cups. I don't really mind, and I don't often call people on it, but it /is/ a bit grating. If I wasn't at a poker table hearing it, I'd be quick to call people on it.. but at the felt, I've got a financial incentive to keep my mouth shut and be One Of The Boys

BamBam said...

Doc, try being Canadian in an American market. Let's go with Mr. Twain here, "Prejudice always starts out as some form of humour."

It's the casualness that bothers me the most. Casualness always leads to comfort. Comfort always leads to aggression. Aggression always leads to complacency. Complacency always leads to the shithead.

I hear it all the time. Trust me.

It ain't easy, but I try to be the bigger man. It's just that sometimes the bigger man needs to sit back and relax. Sometimes however, the bigger man has to throw a punch to get the point across.

In your situation, I'd have no issue calling the dealer out on their mistake.

Anonymous said...

Yknow, it's quite possible he really didn't know it was a racial slur. What may be obvious to you, especially since you are jewish, may not be so obvious to someone else. Remember you could find yourself in a similar situation. Especially these days where everything seems to be a slur. But some are definitely more obvious than others. But at least try and give them the benefit of the doubt until they are proven to be, in fact, a jerkoff(sometimes it doesn't take long).

I had a good go around about the term 'cockroach' which a person told me was a slur for mexicans. Funny thing was when the term was used it wasn't in reference to mexicans. After awhile I ended up telling the guy to grow a skin as he kept trying to tell me that the only meaning for that word was the one he attached to it and nothing else. Anyone who used it was obviously using it maliciously. Yes, he was a moron.

Would I have said something in your spot? Probably not. I've heard alot worse at that table. Cardrooms are full of classless morons. The game draws them. Which is one prime reason I don't play live anymore(I was a long time regular, though you may not remember me). ;)

Man, I could go on a nice rant here about the wonderful peeps (sarcastic) you meet in a cardroom and much worse behaviour, but I won't. It could fill a volume.



DrChako said...

Of course I remember you, Bernie! How've you been?

Anonymous said...

Ha ha..

Been pretty good. Much more relaxed and since I've gotten out of the room and got to actually see the different kinds of weather outside rather than just hearing about it. ;)


Anonymous said...

I got news for your that I am back in the United States and living in NC, I won't even mention that I am Jewish to ANYONE. This morning I was in Chick-fil-A and they were playing a Christian music station over their restaurant radio. This is a public restaurant. I would have said something if I didn't think I would have been lynched. Either way, I am loving the fact that I am back in the USA!