Do's and Don'ts in the Cardroom
Continuing with our introduction to poker for new players, today's lesson will cover some of the do's and don'ts of ones public cardroom experience. There are many things about a cardroom that are unique to the venue. These odd new arenas sometimes make a novice feel uncomfortable or out of place. There is no need to feel awkward or ill at ease. A cardroom is just a place where folks go to play cards. Sort of like how a Wal-Mart is a place where people go to shop. There are many more similarities than there are differences. Allow me to explain.
When you go out in public, how should you dress? Obviously, each of us has our own idea of what is "in" and what is not. Dressing appropriately is the key! You needn't dress up, but you also shouldn't dress down. You will feel comfortable if you are dressed in what is of comfort to you, without being offensive to someone else. For example, shorts in the summer time are fine. Hot pants or "daisy dukes" are not. Sleeveless shirts (if you have the body to wear them) are fine. Muscle shirts are not. Are you seeing a pattern here? While you may get away with some scanty attire when running into the Wal-Mart for a quick shopping adventure, you wouldn't really intend to dress too scantily to go shopping. Neither should you when you go to play cards. T-shirts are fine; T-shirts with offensive or insulting slogans on them are not. Jeans are fine. Torn up and raggedy pants that look like you've lived in them for weeks are not. Be sensible and non-offensive to your fellow poker players. Which brings to mind hygiene, I think that it is a good thing. So will the players sitting around you, as well as the employees who serve you. Don't go out into a public cardroom dressed in such a way as to cause discomfort to those around you.
This brings to mind the biggest point I would like to make in the "how to dress" category. Now mind you, I am no clotheshorse. Those of you who know me will attest to that. However, there is one thing that I see over and over again and I just can't stand it. It is generally the male of the species who is guilty of this fashion faux pas. There is no nice way to say it but to describe it in two simple words. Plumbers-butt! Don't make this fashion mistake! There are crack problems all over the world, don't bring them into the cardroom too! 'Nuff said (I hope).
Another thing to be mindful of when visiting the public venues is the air conditioning. There are drafts in cardrooms as well as hot spots. I rarely venture into a casino of any type without a sweatshirt or jacket. There are few things worse, poker wise, than finally catching the rush (a hot streak of cards) of your life, only to be so cold that you can't enjoy it! Of course, a worse scenario could be that you are in a game and are stuck a lot of money and your teeth are chattering and you are miserably cold. Make no mistake; sometimes it can feel like a storage facility where you could hang meat! Been there, felt that, don't want any part of that again! Bring the right clothes for your needs. It is always more pleasant when the cardroom is on the cool side as opposed to the warm side so when it is cold, button up, don't complain. Hot is miserable too, but you can't fix that feeling as easily as you can the cold one.
Not much more to say here about the clothing issue. Be prudent of others feelings, and dress accordingly. If you look at yourself in the mirror before you go out, and see an image you wouldn't want to look at or have your kids or parents wear, then you ought to change. Simple! Class Dismissed!