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TV

Las Vegas

Show Slang
Back of the House:
Staff whose jobs do not involve direct contact and involvement with patrons on a daily basis. Such positions would include: housekeeping, maintenance, groundskeeping, laundry, kitchen help, dishwashers, & bus boys.

Contrast with "Front of the House."
 
Black Book:
An index of players who are summarily banned from casinos for cheating or attempting various scams. Such players can also be banned for non-gambling reasons, such as association with organized crime or being convicted of violent felonies. Originally, the Black Book was an actual book, but now such records are digitized and available to be compared with a casino's sophisticated digital surveillance system.
 
Black(s):
$100 gaming chip(s).
 
Boxman:
The Boxman is the table supervisor. The boxman is positioned at the center of the craps table, across from the stickman. The Boxman is responsible for tending the gaming chips in the house bank.
 
Cage:
The casino cashier's area. Gamblers come to the cage to have their gaming chips converted into cash when they are finished gambling.
 
Card Counting:
Typically applies to blackjack, but can also be used in Baccarat.

A method whereby the gambler mentally keeps track of the cards played in order to determine the composition of the cards remaining in the deck or shoe in order to determine favorability towards the player or the house. Specific cards (except aces) are not usually kept track of, but rather the ratio of ten-value cards to low-value cards. In blackjack, a deck with a higher ratio of ten-value cards is favorable to the player, so a card counter may increase his wager in this circumstance. A deck with more lower value cards is more favorable to the house (because it's less likely for the dealer to bust when they are required to hit) and the card counter can lower his bet. A deck with many aces remaining is also favorable to the player as it increases the chance of hitting a blackjack and provides more opportunities for doubling down.

Casinos consider card counting 'cheating', but the Nevada Gaming Commission has ruled that it is a skill, not cheating. Nevertheless, Nevada Casinos are permitted bar those suspected of card counting from their casinos. Usually they don't ban a player entirely, only from playing blackjack.

 
Color up:
The process of converting a player's casino chips at a gaming table into the least number of chips for the convenience of the gambler so they make take them to the cage or another table. For example, if a gambler had 100 $25 chips, totalling $2500, they would receive 2 $1000 chips and a $500 chip.
 
Comp:
Accommodations, services, or amenities that are provided to a casino guest without charge. Derived from the word 'complimentary' in the sense of 'free.' The equivalent value of comps are usually directly related to the amount of money a gambler puts in play and the frequency of their visits.

In Old Vegas, comps were handled directly by the casino management, such as the pit boss, floor manager or other casino executives. In modern Vegas most casinos issue 'player cards' to gamblers and their play is automatically kept track of. Casinos with such program normally issue a coupon book of 'comps' of moderate value (such as 2-for-1 dining or beverages, free slot pulls, or free gaming chips (distinctively marked) to gamblers who sign up for a players card. These programs normally have defined point levels for a specific comp, such as a free room, free meal, or room upgrade.

At higher levels of play, the VIP staff normally handles comp arrangement. A full package of comps is called 'RFB'. The gambler receives complimentary room, food, and beverages.

The step beyond VIP are reserved exclusively for those with large bankrolls who are willing to put a large amount of money in play. This type of player is referred to as a Whale. Whales are comped at the highest level, with luxury suites containing fully stocked bars, luxury amenities, perhaps in-suite servants, and any kind of food or beverage served to them wherever and whenever they want it, even at the gaming tables. Whales from out of town will usually get their transportation costs to Las Vegas reimbursed. Whales get whatever they want.

Comps are awarded based primarily on how much money a gambler puts in play, not whether they win or lose. However, anyone who walks away a big winner will likely receive an offer of generous comps to encourage them to return so the casino has an opportunity to win back its money.
 
Drop Box:
A locked container secured to the underside of a gaming table. There is a small slot in the container that is aligned with an opening in the gaming table. The dealer/croupier will accept cash from a gambler and insert it into the drop box and then provide them with the equivalent amount in gaming chips.

When this occurs, the dealer will announce "Check change <amount>." The pit boss will proceed to the table and ensure the transaction is conducted properly.
 
Eye in the Sky:
The term used for any overhead surveillance cameras located in a casino/hotel. The cameras mainly concentrate on the casino area, but are also located in shops, elevators and other public areas of the property. It is illegal for surveillance cameras to be placed in individual accommodations, public restrooms, and employee changing/locker rooms.
 
Front of the House:
Staff whose jobs involve direct contact and involvement with patrons on a daily basis. Such positions would include: dealers, croupiers, & other casino floor personnel, front desk, valet, bellmen, concierge, food & beverages servers, as well as security personnel.

Contrast with "Back of the House."
 
Gaming Card:
A work permit, issued by the Nevada State Gaming Commission, that permits an individual to work in the gaming industry. The individual must submit an application, be sponsored by a gaming establishment, be fingerprinted, undergo background checks and be interviewed.
 
Green(s):
$25 gaming chips. Also referred to as 'quarters.'
 
Light Wand:
A device used to cheat slot machines. The wand is constructed with a camera battery and a bright LED. The light is directed into the inside of the slot machine, usually by the wheels. The light blinds a sensor causing the hopper to discharge coins regardless of whether or not the result was a winning combination.
 
Money Plays:
Allowing a bet to be made with cash rather than gaming chips. This is allowed as a courtesy to the player and other players at the table as to not hold up the pace of play. This usually happens when a player first arrives at a table, or if the player wishes to add to his bet, but is out of chips. The latter usually happens in blackjack when the player bets with the last of his chips, but then wishes to double down or split.
 
Non-gaming Card:
A work permit, issued by the Nevada State Gaming Commission or local authorities, that allows an individual to work in a gaming establishment in a non-gaming capacity. Such individuals might be bartenders, cocktail servers, security personnel, restaurant workers, or valets. The individual must submit an application, be fingerprinted, undergo background checks and be interviewed.
 
Parlay:
Betting one's proceed from a winning bet on the next wager. If successful, this can result in a large return.
 
Past Posting:
The surrepticious changing of a bet by a gambler after the results are known, but before the dealer pays winning bets or collects losing bets. Normally this refers to a gambler adding to a winning bet, but it can also take the form of a gambler removing chips from a losing bet.
 
Pit:
A cluster of gaming tables arranged in a rectangular fashion to create a distinct area within it for the casino staff to work. The only gaming employee who stands outside the pit is the stickman at the craps table. The pit can comprise tables of all one specific game or a variety of different games.
 
Purple(s):
$500 gaming chip(s). Also referred to as a Barney, presumably after the purple dinosaur character.
 
Red(s):
$5 gaming chips. Also referred to as 'nickels.'
 
Rolling Cage:
A secure cart used by a casino's cashier and security personnel to collect the cash laden drop boxes and replace them with empty ones at gaming tables.
 
Shooter:
At the craps table, the gambler who rolls the dice. The shooter retains the right to roll the dice until he loses, unless he's the only player at the table. The shooter may also pass the dice any time after a winning wager. The shooter may not pass the dice while trying to make a point.
 
Sports Book:
A area within the casino where one can wager on almost any sporting event. Betting on sports events is legal in Nevada no matter where the event is being held.
 
Stickman:
The casino staff member at a craps table who calls out the results of a dice roll and returns the dice to the shooter. The stickman has a long wooden stick with a 90 degree bend at the end of it to corral the dice from the far end of the table and push them back to the shooter. The stickman is also responsible for keeping tabs of the extra sets of dice at the table.
 
Stiff:
A gambler who does not toke (tip) the dealer/croupier at the table they are gambling at. It is considered bad etiquette not to toke, especially if the gambler is winning or has just made a big win at the table. The term is also used to describe a gambler who does not tip the cocktail server when their (usually complementary) beverage is served to them at a gaming table. Can also be used as a verb to describe the act of not rendering a gratuity.

Can also apply to a guest who doesn't pay their bill or settle a credit line. May also apply to a Whale whose wagering does not meet the expectations for the level of comps they receive.
 
The Strip:
The section of Las Vegas Blvd that runs from McCarran Airport to just north of Sahara Blvd. Most of the high-end casino hotels/resorts are located on the strip or close to it. The Mandalay Bay is located at the southern end of the strip. The Stratosphere (including the tall, needle-like tower) is located at the northern end. In many episodes, the opening shot is an airborne shot of The Strip, usually at night when it is brightly lit.

The fictional Montecito is located on the east side of The Strip, across from Mandalay Bay, next to McCarren Airport. No actual casino is at this location. It's mainly empty land with a few scattered industrial buildings on it. In the show, the Montecito and it's grounds are added to the wide shots with computer graphics.
 
Toke:
Gaming chips given to a dealer/croupier by a gambler as a gratuity. At table games, there is a clear plastic box with a small slot in the top that the casino staff member places the chips in. Tokes are normally pooled among a specific pit or a particular casino game and distributed among the staff working within that area during a shift.

In most casinos, at some table games, the dealer can also be toked by placing a bet alongside the players bet and telling the dealing that it's for them. This form of toke is most common in blackjack. The side bet is not subject to the table minimum. At a $25 minimum table, the player can place a $5 bet for the dealer. Normally the amount of the toke bet can not exceed the players bet or be used to meet the table minimum.

If the player wins the hand, the dealer pays off the players bet and also the bet placed as a toke. If the player loses, the dealer collects the toke bet as a win for the house. Most casinos require a winning toke bet and the pay-off to be taken down immediately and placed in the toke box. A few casinos allow the player to control the toke bet by letting it ride. In this case it's polite to consult with the dealer. Most dealers will go for the sure thing and suggest taking the bet down so that it goes into the toke box. In any case, the player can never remove any of the chips from the toke and return it to his chips.

Can also be used as a verb as in "I toke the dealer each time I get a blackjack."
 
Toke Box:
A box (usually made of clear plastic) that is attached to the dealer's side of a gaming table in clear view. The box has a small slot in the top. When toked (tipped), the dealer takes the chips from the toke and inserts them into the toke box. At the end of a shift, the toke boxes are collected and the proceeds are distributed among the gaming staff according to the casino's policy.
 
Vig:
Short for 'vigorish.' Term used for the percentage the house takes on certain wagers and in specific games. In poker games, the house usually takes 5% in exchange for providing the table, dealer, beverage service, etc, as the players compete against each other and not the house. At the sports book the house usually adds a 10% premium to wagers. Thus, a player wishing to place a $1000 bet would pay the house $1100 and garner only $2000 on a winning bet. In Baccarat, the house takes 5% of all winnings for wagers placed on the Bank.
 
Whale:
An individual who puts large amounts of money in play at a casino, usually at high-stakes games. Whales always receive a full RFB (Room, Food, and Beverage) comp and are provided with the finest accommodations in the hotel. Some casinos set aside private gaming rooms for Whales, away from the noise and clatter of the main gaming rooms.

To be designated a Whale the criteria is how much money the individual puts in play, not whether they win or lose. The casinos knows that the odds are always in their favor so they will get their money eventually.

A Whale is assigned a casino host whose job it is to accommodate the whale's requests and desires. The host's other main job is to ensure that the whale puts enough money in play to justify the level of comps and other amenities received. Sam is a casino host.
 
White(s):
$1 gaming chips. Some casinos may use light blue or gray chips for the $1 denomination, but for many years they were white and are still referred to as such.
 

Warning: Las Vegas guide may contain spoilers
Classification: Scripted
Genre: Drama
Status: Canceled
Network: NBC ( USA)
Airs: Fridays at 10:00 pm
Runtime: 60 Minutes
Premiere: September 22, 2003
Ended: February 15, 2008
This guide is currently edited by:
dani97 (Challenge)