Texas Blackjack

[RR] Zane the Zany had finished dealing everyone’s hole cards, but in picking up his hand had accidentally flipped over his 5♣. “Exposed card”, announced Roderick the Rock, “Zane has the Five of Clubs, which you can now turn back face down.”

[ZZ] “Oh, that’s okay, I’ll leave it there.”

[CC] Everyone folded to Carlos the Crazy in the cutoff, who’s all smiles with an idea. “Benny, can I borrow your Blackjack card? I need to know what I’m supposed to do against a dealer’s Five.”

[BB] Catching on quickly after his initial instinct was to object, Benny dug his plastic Basic Strategy card out of his wallet and handed it to Carlos. “Here you are. Hope you make more money from it than I have.”

[CC] After studying it for a minute, Carlos asked, “Would you guys let me split1 my cards if I had a pair?”, evoking a smattering of snickers and incredulous “No”s. “Can I buy insurance?2 Oh wait, that’s only against an Ace. Can I surrender?3 No, don’t want to do that…”

[CC] “I stand”, Third Base4 finally decided, as he matched the big blind with a blue chip.

[ZZ] “I’ve got the advantage as dealer, so let’s play for higher stakes”, Zane offered as he pushed out two blue chips. The small and big blinds both folded, leaving them head-to-head.

[CC] “Since you won’t let me split, I double down”,5 returned Carlos, offering three blue chips.

[CC] Zane called, and the Crazy one yelled “Hit me!” as the dealer put out the 6♣, A♥, and A♣.

[CC] “I stand”, Carlos stated quickly. Zane said nothing as he dealt a 2♦ turn.

Carlos signalled “stand” with a swish of his right hand, and the Zany one quietly dealt a J♠ river.

CC again just waved his hand, but this time Zane bet half the pot.

[CC] “I know you’re busted; there are already twenty points showing”, Carlos claimed as he pushed his entire stack forward.

[ZZ] “Nice read”, Zane admitted, as he flipped over his down card, showing the 4♣. “Missed my flush draw.”

[CC] “Well, as long as we’re being nice…”, Carlos responded as he produced the 6♠ and 6♦ for a flopped boat.

[TT] “If I’d known what game we were playing / I would have beat you both. Just saying / My natural’d have fixed my stack lack / Had Ace of spades, Jack of clubs: Blackjack!”, chimed in Tyrone the Telephone.

Footnotes:

  1. In Blackjack, you can split any pair and get a second card to go with each, adding a bet so that each new hand plays for the initial stake.
  2. In Blackjack, an insurance bet is a simple side bet that a dealer showing an Ace has a King, Queen, Jack, or Ten in the hole.
  3. In Blackjack, to surrender is to give up on a hand immediately in return for half of your bet back.
  4. In Blackjack lingo, Third Base, also called the Anchorman, is the player immediately to the right of the dealer, whom you can think of as the pitcher in a game of baseball.
  5. In Blackjack, doubling down means doubling your bet and getting exactly one more card.

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