Job Description of a Blackjack Player
PROFESSIONAL BLACKJACK PLAYER
Job Summary: This a position which is self supervised. It involves the successful play of the casino game of "21," also known as "blackjack." It may involve travel to various casino locales in the U.S. and elsewhere.
1. Playing blackjack in a casino, utilizing card counting and/or other advantage-play individual games in different casinos.
3. Developing an "act" designed to fool casino personnel into believing the player is not playing with an advantage.
4. Assessing and analyzing the advantages and disadvantages of various blackjack games offered by casinos.
5. Computing appropriate betting patterns based upon specific games and the size of bankroll.
6. Keeping current on playing conditions through the use of personal observation, various periodicals and Internet sites.
7. Observing and assessing casino personnel, particularly dealers and floor persons.
8. Keeping records of play, observation of conditions, casino personnel and individual dealers.
Skills and knowledge required: Any person performing this work must have a complete knowledge of the basic strategy of the game of blackjack, including variations that can differ from game to game, depending upon the rules and number of decks of cards in use. He or she must be able to implement these strategy decisions in actual casino play without thought or hesitation. In addition, the person must possess a thorough knowledge of one or more counting systems, including the variations in basic strategy that are included in such a system. The ability to count down a deck of cards, using a reputable counting system, in less than 25 seconds is a must. The person must also be able to count cards at a glance as they are presented on a table layout. The ability to understand the basic math of card counting is a necessity. A professional blackjack player must be able to understand the concepts of standard deviation, variance and risk of ruin. He or she must have the ability to understand bet sizing concepts and to compute the proper betting spreads for a variety of games. An understanding of Kelly concepts of betting is a necessity. An ability to get along well with other players, dealers and floor personnel is desirable. Should be able to detect signals from casino personnel that one is in danger of being backed-off or barred from play and know the appropriate measures to take to avoid this. Shuffle tracking and/or hole-carding abilities are not a prerequisite for the position, but are desirable.
Other requirements of the position:
1. A suitable playing bankroll, large enough to allow the player to earn at an acceptable rate while running a risk of ruin of 1% or less. This bankroll should be separate from living expenses.
2. The ability to suffer long losing streaks without losing patience or the proper perspective or succumbing to the temptation to overbet one's bankroll during such periods.
3. Flexibility in changing styles of play when conditions warrant.
4. Acting abilities are desirable.
5. A willingness to spend large amounts of "downtime" when assessing games and playing conditions.
6. The ability to spend long hours in a sitting position, while tolerating rude players, dealers, floor personnel, drunks and cigarette smoke.
7. Should be willing to travel long distances to find good games.
8. The ability to mentally perform simple mathematical calculations while carrying on a conversation.
9. Experience with the use of computers.
10. Knowledge of the use of false identification is preferred.
Experience and education required: No formal education is required, but a solid grounding in mathematics is desirable. Should have read and understood Thorp's Beat The Dealer, Wong's Professional Blackjack, Schlesinger's Blackjack Attack, Andersen's Burning the Tables in Las Vegas and Griffin's Theory of Blackjack. Should have read and understood at least one of the following: Blackjack for Blood, Blackbelt in Blackjack, Million Dollar Blackjack, The World's Greatest Blackjack Book, Knock-Out Blackjack, and Playing Blackjack as a Business. Should have extensive experience with part-time play in casinos. At least 1000 hours of playing and counting time preferred. Should develop a program of continuing education in order to stay current with the latest playing techniques and conditions.