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ATM-“ers” IN AC


To get off the “smoking- quitting smoking-cutting down”, and the DIRE NEED for a NEW TOPIC around here, I was speaking to my best friend about taking trips to Atlantic City, when I went off on some rant about my how I am mystified by the way people can behave in such a setting, like AC. During the conversation I brought up what always strikes me as the.most.shocking thing to witness.

The fact that Atlantic City has no clocks, no windows and the casinos are pumped full of oxygen, doesn’t phase me in the least. And, no! it’s not the sluts, whore, hookers, cleavage (I love that part, I actually blend in down there ). It’s not the free alcohol! indoor smoking! or even the ching! ching! bell ringing, whistles. Nor is it the sound of plastic chips when they hit the table, or the showgirls and special effects. I don’t even take a second look at the old men with the younger women. I don’t turn my head towards the glamour of the high-rollers either. The shuffling of cards does not send a shiver down my spine. The buckets of coins, well….they amuse me, I’ll admit that one, but not shock!

No, what amazes me, shocks me, and makes it so i.cant.look.away. are the people who get into the ATM line to take out more money. I will never be able to comprehend that moment in life when you actually have lost all the money you had, and you get in a line with a bunch of other people to loose more money?

What? is IT? that happens in a persons brain? that just “suspends reality” and allows them to continue to believe this next time they will “double down” and get all their money back (and then some) in one big score of some kind. ??

I swear, when I am in AC I watch just that. I could sit there for hours watching the line of people taking out college funds, second mortgages and going bankrupt in a matter of hours sometimes seconds. I watch them because I wonder if at ant point any of them will realize just what they are doing and stop! They are in a long enough line with a long enough time to THINK…. what do they think about? Does any one EVER come to the conclusion to… Leave the line? Tap out! Go home!

I can speak from experience with an EX, its ugly to witness the euphoria and despair in ones eyes as the obsession with gambling overtakes someone’s whole persona. (and the dead silent car ride home was always the worst… dead broke and me thinking I told you so, I told you so in my head while he drove silent and replaying the events in his head over and over and still contemplating his next big win…duh!)

I never realized that gambling, much like smoking, drinking and drugs, is a real addiction that some people just can’t handle.

I am not judging this behavior at all, as I have battled many many addictions myself, it’s just INSANE to watch. In a sad and yet somehow quite comical way.

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  • Michael

    I literally live one mile from Atlantic City. My father also worked more than 20 years on the casino floor as a supervisor of games. It really is a fucked up place and I stay away from the gambling aspect of it. But I can’t ignore that AC has become a major music hotspot nowadays. Bands like Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Rolling Stones, Springsteen, Madonna, they’ve all played here and will come back again. Hell HENRY ROLLINS came to AC and FUCKING SLAYER is coming next month!!!

    But as for the gamblers, yeah they’re fucked. My dad used to tell me stories of people that would urinate on themselves seated and standing just to stay at the tables and play another hand. He had tons of stories like that.

    I work in a psychiatric program and I know it’s got something to do with a lack of impulse control and immediate gratification, but basically on an everyday level, it’s just fucked. Sometimes crazy is just crazy.

  • meleah rebeccah

    see, I knew it, GAMBLERS are fucking CRAZY!


    (I know its not nice to laugh in the face of such a serious problem, but, that’s coming from someone who laughs at funerals because I am so uncomfortable…it’s my thang…)

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