View Full Version : RJ & Fred Astaire played pool

phil in sofla
07-30-2002, 01:40 PM
Ok, it was Robert ("RJ") Wagner, the actor from Hart to Hart, It takes a Thief, etc.

He was chatting up Larry King the other night, and talking about working with the great Fred Astaire. Evidently, he grew up around his house, and never knew who Fred was as a kid, just that he was his friend's father.

Later, when he got a chance to have Fred work with him (he was RJ's father, I think it was, on It Takes a Thief), he said they spent a lot of time together, just hanging out, and playing pool.

Talk about making the cue ball dance! I imagine Fred doing one of his dances with inanimate objects, with his pool cue, in between innings or something. Gotta beat that baton-twirling, samarai wannabe crap that Tom Cruise did in Color of Money.

---always thought Fred was a way classy guy. RJ (Wagner) and Sean Connery, and other classy wannabes, eat your hearts out!

Chris Cass
07-30-2002, 03:28 PM
Hi Phil,

I once dealt black jack to Robert Wagner while his wife was doing a show appearance in town. It was at a $5. table, he was very nice and couldn't play black jack to save his life. He's not a big bettor nor a huge tipper. He was very polite and down to earth. Sometimes, that counts for more than a bunch of whinning, inconsiderate lumps.....


C.C.~~can't win at black jack no matter how much you know. he didn't play basic strategy, just took a card when he felt. all right brain. hahaha

07-30-2002, 09:18 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Chris Cass:</font><hr> He's not a huge tipper.<hr></blockquote>I was curious, what amount is considered an average tip, a good tip etc. at a gaming table?

Scott Lee
07-30-2002, 11:31 PM
Phil...You might be interested to know that Fred Astaire had FOUR 9' Brunswicks in his basement. Must of had some great pool parties back in those days!

Scott Lee

Chris Cass
07-31-2002, 12:01 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Scott Lee:</font><hr> Phil...You might be interested to know that Fred Astaire had FOUR 9' Brunswicks in his basement. Must of had some great pool parties back in those days!

Scott Lee <hr></blockquote>

Hi Scott,

Heard he could make that cb dance. Ouch, that was bad....


Chris Cass
07-31-2002, 12:33 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: rich:</font><hr> &lt;blockquote&gt;&lt;font class="small"&gt;Quote: Chris Cass:&lt;/font&gt;&lt;hr&gt; He's not a huge tipper.&lt;hr&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;I was curious, what amount is considered an average tip, a good tip etc. at a gaming table? <hr></blockquote>

Hi Rich,

The proper amount as far as gaming at a BJ table goes, is $5.00 every session. These sessions are suppose to be in 30 min intervals. The thing is, nobody leaves in 30 min. The casinos know this and it is to there advantage.

The way I see it being a gambler, is to tip if your dealer is polite and appears pleasant. If they treat you like your not at the table, stiff them. There's nothing worse than a sourpuss dealer as far as I'm concerned. Now, some of the guests can be pretty annoying and make the dealer act this way also. So please, bare this in mind.

Being a gambler myself I know how someone feels if they lost $300. before coming to my table to win $300. there. They feel they haven't won anything. I myself know how they feel. I don't expect anything if someone is losing. It is polite to give 2 1/2 percent of your win as a tip. 5 percent is a great tip.

I myself like for the customer to bet it. We as dealers have to split our tips and depend on them for our main source of income. The best way to do this is bet the money on top of your bet. If you win, the next hand put the win payoff out in front of your bet as a dealer bet. Leaving the original bet on top again. That way the house is supplying the tips. Everyones happy and keep putting it out there. If you win, the dealer wins. If you lose the dealers know you tried. That counts for more than words.

By the way, I'm unemployed. The casinos treat the dealers like crap. They also might bring that to the table too. It's a pressure (cooker) business for sure. If you win at Caribbean Stud. Something like the big one or the 10 % jackpot. The back bet is sufficient. That's about $1000. and that's for everyone. All the dealers count on that as there baby. I've seen women dealers cry many times in the breakroom saying they got a $100. tip for the $28000. payout. The bet in the back is not included in the jackpot.


C.C.~~not a selfish person and understands what waitresses, bartenders, hair stylists (used too), and others need to live.

07-31-2002, 07:56 AM
Wow. What a dancer. I read that Astaire was a really difficult guy to work with; a perfectionist. He'd want to do take after take, even after the director was satisfied. Nice to know he enjoyed pool. I bet he had a smooth stroke.

When Astaire got older and people would ask him to do a few steps, he'd refuse. He said he'd rather not dance at all than butcher the art form.

Jack Nicklaus was the same way. He said that every tournament he played in, he played to win, and when Tiger came along, he knew it was time to retire because winning was no longer an option.


07-31-2002, 08:05 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Fran Crimi:</font><hr> Wow. What a dancer. I read that Astaire was ... a perfectionist. <hr></blockquote>Hi Fran,

"Remember, Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but she did it backwards and in high heels!"

07-31-2002, 08:34 AM
No way. I bet she was standing on his feet the whole time.


07-31-2002, 08:39 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Fran Crimi:</font><hr> No way. I bet she was standing on his feet the whole time.

Fran <hr></blockquote>
&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;Maybe he was standing on hers!!!!! Fran, I bet you can "Trip the light fantastic". ****Lester****

07-31-2002, 09:31 AM
Trip is a good word. Yikes!

I'm no Ginger, but I can do a mean Tarrantella. LOL


07-31-2002, 10:45 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Fran Crimi:</font><hr> Trip is a good word. Yikes!

I'm no Ginger, but I can do a mean Tarrantella. LOL

Fran <hr></blockquote>
&gt;&gt;&gt;&gt;You mean the guy that does those neat movies? ha ha ***Lester***

07-31-2002, 06:57 PM

Jimmy Caras has a personally signed photo from Fred Astaire. It came about when Jimmy did a trick shot by firing in all 15 balls (no cue ball used) in under 7 seconds in a side pocket. (they were lined up in across from a side pocket - it's a speed time thing) Fred tried to do the same thing but failed repeatedly. Fred congratulated Jimmy on having "faster feet"!!

Barbara~~~or was it a "faster feat"?...

ted harris
08-01-2002, 09:59 AM
If I remember correctly, Abe Rich of Star Cues in Miami Beach made Fred Astaire a 5 peice cue way back when. I think he also made one for Jackie Gleason, hence the name Star Cues.

phil in sofla
08-01-2002, 02:26 PM
Not sure the game is unbeatable. I come from a family of card counters, spent a summer in Vegas as part of a counting team, and did well. Not a day went by that we weren't up $1,000 to $5,000 at some point or another. Then it was a question of money management.

The changes in the game (6 decks in most places, up to 50% of the shoe 'cut'), was because it was so beatable by the knowledgeable counter before. While it's harder now, I still think the basic strategy edge of a slight 0.5% against you, almost a dead even gamble, can be reversed to a positive expectation for the player, to about a 4 to 5% average advantage with proper play, bet and bankroll management.

Chris Cass
08-01-2002, 04:39 PM
Hi Phil,

Card counting doesn't guarentee anything. True it does let you know when the odds are in your favor to jack the bet. Although card counting isn't illegal, the casinos do cut the deck in half. They do this too annoy the card counter into leaving. They are scared they might get on a roll and kick their butt.

The best card counter is the counter that goes unnoticed. Making about $200. a day. The ones that take the quick hit of $1000. and above are the ones who they track and don't think the pic's from the eye in the sky, don't get circulated from casino to casino, they do.

It is an edge counting cards. I also use the +1 -2 system. I've won also, but the casino is always the winner in the long run. They have more money and time in their favor. Unless your bank roll is big, your chances are limited. You have to win. They'll have dealers tapping in and out to make your head spin and burn a card everytime. They also have put me in on a couple of games too. I deal so quick, if your drunk you'll puke watching my hands.

I've dealt to many card counters and can tell you this from a dealers stand point. If your tipping? I don't care what you take from the house. LOL A majority of dealers, feel the same way.



phil in sofla
08-01-2002, 06:01 PM

In my experience with my team counting effort, we always had a great shoe or two per playing session, sort of like a team in the NBA will generally make a run of unanswered or barely answered baskets/points sometime during a game.

Then the question is, are you so far down that the big run only gets you about even, or close enough to even that the run puts you up an appreciable amount? The difference is, in the NBA, you still have to finish the game, whereas in playing 21, you can elect to leave at the end of any hand. So, while the NBA team with a nice run to go up a bit has to continue to play out til the end of the game, and maybe suffer a run by the other team, that isn't true at a casino.

Except when it is. People like gambling enough that they don't quit once ahead, or once they lose two hands in a row, or whatever. The money is a little secondary to the adrenalin rush of the risk/reward/punishment cycle, and it is 'the game' that is the goal itself. Many a time me and Pops would be up, say, $5,000 in our first half hour, but would we leave good enough alone and cash out for the day? Ha! Of course not. The POINT was to play many hours, and get into five figures. (His point, not mine).

I'd say that if you come in with enough bullets (60 'true' units, accounting for how often you'll be doubling or splitting, or splitting and then re-doubling), play and bet jam-up and conservatively, get to your max bet gradually by letting wins ride (not jacking them up suddenly), bet minimum during losing streaks, etc., you can hang in close enough to even that when the hot shoe arrives, you end that good streak with a profit, IF you have the discipline then to quit ahead. I'd say the first part of that is relatively easy, the last part, hard.

Most people don't have the 60 bullets, or underestimate their true average bet, so they're overbetting the bankroll, and are subject to losing the bankroll before the odds can work in their favor. I think the numbers show that given an average advantage of 4% (the casinos rule the world with 1.5% in their favor!), a player with 60 true units can outlast downturns about 95% of the time, and still be in action with that original buy-in.

08-05-2002, 07:23 AM
yeahif you dance like ginger rogers i can singer like elvis and not elvis from the golden q just jokeing don't take it personal take my pool playing serios until we match up again i will destroy you. bye fran crimi with the jump cue

08-05-2002, 07:29 AM
You're a nut, Finnegan. Actually, folks, Finnegan runs some of the best weekly local tournaments in NYC. He's keeping competitive pool alive here. I give him credit because he stands up to all the whiners and complainers as you normally get with these things.

Funny that he posted in the Astaire thread. Finnegan's Rainbow.

OK, Finnegan, I'm comin' after ya.