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The hearty handshake

When you work in the gaming industry, you get to have a feel for people, by judging their actions before, sometimes well before they speak, as they bear down on you with intent. It’s a survival mechanism, and helps you avoid some of the more eccentric and aggrieved customers who want to vent on you when their issue is really with someone else.

One of these tell tale bits of body language is the hand extended for a handshake well before you get close enough to grasp it. These people invariably want something. They want cigarettes or cigars. They want more time. They want their average bet raised. They want you to do something that someone else has already refused to do for them, no doubt with good reason, and so on. These people are a pain.

One of my colleagues was understandably reticent, earlier this year, to grasp an outstretched hand that he saw floating across the table towards him. While he was conducting an inner debate as to how to react, the dealer’s hand shot out and gave it an enthusiastic shake instead. This woke my colleague up, as, for a dealer, this is one of the things that are definitely forbidden.

An instant before he was to have started his knee jerk chewing out of the dealer, he recognized the face attached to the arm. It was Bill Clinton.

Perhaps his first instinct was right, after all!

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