March 26, 2007
The Wizard's NewsFrom the Wizard....
Neteller: Some progress
It has now Day 69 that my $30,000 in Neteller withdrawals, along with $55 million held by others, has been locked by the US government. But there is some good news. First is that 43 days after making peer to peer transfers of another $20,000 I finally received that money on March 13, less $1174 in various fees taken out along the way. Also, Neteller has announced that it has signed an agreement with U.S. authorities (link removed) to allow it to return customer deposits over the next 75 days (from March 21). I am not happy about the wait but at least there is some promise of getting my $30,000 back.
My tournament results
I continue to play in as many table game tournaments as I can, which is not that many. In February I only played one blackjack tournament. That was uneventful, as I went bust in the first round on the second to last hand. I returned for a wild card drawing but wasn't called.
On the weekend of March 10 I was in a baccarat tournament at another major Vegas casino. Without boring you with all the details on my last hand I bet all the play chips I had, $275,000 on the player. I knew this was an impressive sum and had a good chance to win the top prize of $200,000 if I won. After everything went right all weekend it would have been the perfect ending to win that bet. However in a stunning reversal all six cards were dealt and the banker won 7 to 0. The dealer grabbed my chips and put them in the tray, as if they were worth the plastic they were made of. I initiated a score of a big fat zero and sulked away.
Later I returned to see the winning scores. The first place winner was somewhere between $440,000 and $450,000. Second to Fifth places were not far behind. Had I won my last hand I not only would have beaten him, but blown him away with $550,000. This caused me to second guess my decision to bet on the player in the last hand. Normally I like to shoot for a high score, but in this case I was so high going into the final hand perhaps I should gone for a smaller higher score, but a higher probability of winning, by betting on the banker. This second-guessing my decision continues to haunt me a week later. $200,000 would have been a life-changing amount of money for me. Had I not been so greedy, and bet on the banker, it would have been mine. Then again, perhaps it was an unlikely low winning score and I did the right thing, which just didn't work out. Normally I like to think I'm pretty cool with the ups and downs of gambling, but this event has been hard for even me to take. I replay it in my mind constantly. Definitely one of those "Wonder Years" kinds of moments that will be etched in my mind for years.
New bingo analysis
While my new Bingo section is not yet complete I have still added some preliminary advice. Please have a look if you would like a sneak preview.
Ask the Wizard!
Here's an excerpt from the newest
the Wizard, column
Due to the ridiculous legislation passed an few months back, it has obviously become more and more difficult to deposit money into my online poker accounts, including Bodog. :) Without aiding and abetting, could you possibly share with your readers some creative ways to overcome this obstacle or at least provide a list of the known still active deposit sites. Thanks for any help you can provide. — Ed H. from Indianapolis
My webmaster, Michael Bluejay, addresses this very subject in our January 31, 2007 newsletter. To expand on the credit cards, another friend suggested using prepaid credit cards (aka "gift cards"), which can be purchased at some banks and drugstores.
What's new on the site
Bingo. There is much more to come, but here is a start to my new bingo section.
Brett Morton interview. Brett Morton, author of Roulette: Playing to Win, interviews me about roulette and other topics.
Ask the Wizard columns #184 and #185.
Until next time, set your expectations high.From Michael Bluejay....
Betting on vomit
You probably didn't know this, but you can bet on all kinds of unusual things at Bodog. For example, you can bet that one of the contestants on American Idol 6 will throw up on stage. The line is +300, which means you get paid 3:1 on winning bets. A $50 bet wins $150 (and you get your original $50 back).
Or you can bet on whether Britney Spears will get pregnant in 2007. The "No" on that bet is -800, which means you bet $8 for every dollar you want to win. A $48 bet wins $6.
If that's not enough for ya then you can also bet on whether David Beckham and Posh Spice will convert to Scientology, and some other wacky events as well, including one that the Wizard won't let me mention because it's in poor taste. (Er, I guess even poorer taste than those above.) Anyway, check out Bodog's special prop bets (link removed).
Repeal of UIGEA a longshot
The net has been abuzz with news that Congressman Barney Frank has floated the idea of trying to repeal the recent "UIGEA" legislation, which has crippled online gambling. That act didn't outlaw online gambling specifically, it just said that banks can't process those transactions, but they effect is similar, as most operators no longer take U.S. players, and Neteller, the biggest payment processor, no longer lets American players make deposits at casinos.
But about the possibility of a repeal...well, don't hold your breath. Frank hasn't actually filed any legislation, and if he does so, then it will be an uphill battle towards repeal. While Republicans are staunchly anti-gambling, Democrats don't see removing barriers to online gambling as a priority. While we're waiting to see if anything develops, here's a video of Barney Frank criticizing the UIGEA (link removed).
Free book drawing winner
This month's winner of the Wizard's book, Gambling 102, is someone who goes by the moniker "Cobra Blond" — subscriber #1764 (alphabetically) of 10,777, and who signed up for the list way back on August 21, 2003. Congratulations, C.B.! Your book is now hurtling towards you through time and space.
See ya next time!