Eighty-Sixed: Chronicles of a Card Counter


verb \ ˌā-tē-ˈsiks slangto refuse to serve (a customer); also to get rid of : throw out



I’m here to offer some insight into the (sort of) secret world of professional gambling from my personal experience, as well as a bit of advice for any aspiring pro gamblers out there. I started on a somewhat traditional path—studied hard, got a fancy degree, studied more,  started working on another degree. Then I took a sudden detour and joined a professional card counting team, and my whole life plan went off the rails.

As someone who had never gambled more than a few dollars at a time, the idea that I could make a living from simply playing a card game blew my mind. Learning how to count cards and beat high stakes blackjack changed my entire perspective about the world and how I wanted to live the rest of my life. I’m still trying to decide whether that shift in worldview was good or bad for my future or for how I turned out as a person. All I know is that it I  met some amazing people and lived through some unique, often surreal experiences that I’ve never been able to share with pretty much anyone. Until now.

I’m in the process of writing a memoir about my journey from student to full-time gambler, and my many (often failed) attempts to transition to the “real” world before finding my way back to the surreal one again and again. Maybe some of you can relate? The blog will be kind of a preview of my book, along with a collection of thoughts, opinions, clever anecdotes and whatever else I decide to write along the way. Thanks for visiting!


Please note: this is not a strategy or coaching site for blackjack, poker or any casino games.