So, yesterday evening was men’s night at the Shawnee Kickapoo casino, which means a genuine old-fashioned $10 match play opportunity. Pixie and I were driving by. She had a sore foot and no interest in hobbling on it, but she was willing to hang in the parking lot and make phone calls while I ran in to do $20 worth of quick wagers.

During a quick scout around, I noticed a Bank Heist machine that seemed like a fine place to play my initial $10 — just twenty fast spins at the base fifty-cent bet. Only trouble was, when I circled back to it, there was an older woman sitting sideways in the chair, watching a younger woman playing the adjacent machine. She had no money in the machine, no card in the machine, nothing. Just sitting and watching, not gambling at all.

So I asked her, polite as you could wish:

“Ma’am, are you planning to play that machine? Because if not, I’d sure like to.”

She said “No…” and got up and stepped aside. So I said “Thanks”, sat down and started to plug in my money.

Then she said: “I was going to, though!” in an angry tone. And the younger woman said in a vicious voice “I guess I’ll move then, too!” and punched for her cash-out ticket.

I felt like I’d fallen into the land of the crazy women. All she had to do was say “I’m about to play it” or “yes” and I’d have moved on. Instead, she gave me the machine, and now she and her friend are acting angry at me?

I just stared at my screen, pretended I didn’t notice the crazy people, and kept gambling.

About three spins later, the younger woman is suddenly in the left side of my face, holding onto the back of my chair and leaning in over my left shoulder, totally up in my personal space and reeking of beer. “Are you winning yet?” she asks in a belligerent tone.

I pretended she wasn’t there. No joy.

“Are you winning yet?”

I continued to pretend I hadn’t heard her.

“Are you winning yet?”

“I just sat down.”

That’s what she wanted. Loud angry voice:

“So had my mom!”

The conversation went downhill from there. Fortunately, I was almost done betting my $10. Basically, in the time it took me to finish, I told her about four times that all I did was ask. She kept loudly exclaiming “No you didn’t!” and drunkenly complaining that her mom had wanted to play the machine I was on. She was acting like she wanted some sort of fight, to be honest. Luckily, I was able to disengage, and she didn’t follow me.

There were two Kickapoo casino security guards at the door, just 10 or 12 feet away. They didn’t appear to notice, and they didn’t get involved. Frankly, I’d have appreciated it if they’d shown up to calm down the situation. But they showed no sign of noticing the loud belligerent drunk woman. It’s the first time I’ve ever been in an uncomfortable confrontation in an Oklahoma casino. I hope it’s also the last.

At the beginning of December 2012 I commented that Pixie and I had never received any promo mailers from the Sac & Fox despite the signs they posted when they got rid of all their match play.

Since that time, neither Pixie nor I so much as crossed the threshold of that casino. There are other casinos in Shawnee that offer (not very generous) match play and half-assed matchplay (play $20, get $10 and so forth). So why play at the place that offers nothing?

And then, interestingly, Pixie got a March 2013 mailer from them. Her mailer consists of a whole array of $5.00 free play coupons, all with different dates in the month of March.

I didn’t get a mailer. Which is interesting, because we always played there at the same times and wagered similar amounts. (She has maybe 15% more accumulated points than me based on our play there during the first part of 2012.)

So, yesterday we stopped in (on our way to buffet dinner at the Fire Lake Grand) so Pixie could get her free play. Me? I wandered over to the Player’s Club and asked them to verify my mailing address. There’s always a chance I’ve got the wrong address in the database, right? (Oklahoma casinos are terrible about scanning the mag stripe on your ID and updating the mailing address in their database without asking you; when your ID has a physical address where you cannot receive mail, this is a problem.)

I didn’t say a word about why I was asking. Unsolicited, the woman at the player’s club said to me in a preachy, dismissive tone of voice:

“Are you asking because you didn’t get a promo mailer? Because I’m sure your address is fine. You just don’t get a mailer if you haven’t been in here and playing enough!”

I allowed as how I hadn’t been in since November, and she interrupted me:

“That’s why you didn’t get a mailer! It’s all based on your play from last month, so if you didn’t come in, no mailer.”

Patiently I explained that I had thought so, too, but that someone I knew had just gotten a mailer and we had neither one of us been into the casino since November, I just wanted to be sure about the address.

“That could only happen if she has played just a whole lot more than you.”

By this time I was getting pretty tired of the snotty service. But I just asked her, again, patiently, if she’d please just verify my mailing address. Finally she did, checking her screen and reading back to me my correct mailing address.

So, that’s the scoop, people. The player’s club at the Sac & Fox is claiming, rather rudely, that they only send mailers to people who have been playing recently. It’s not true. But we don’t know what other criteria they may be using. And apparently the player’s club reps don’t know either, or have been instructed not to give good info if they do know.

On the bright side, I noticed a new bank of brand-new AGS “Pay It Again” video poker machines, which would be the newest video poker machines in Shawnee and the only ones that aren’t ancient and horrible Game Kings. According to this page, the worst payout option available from the manufacturer of that machine is 96.92%, which means it would be a fairly inexpensive seat from which to rack up a lot of play. (That’s a poor return for a serious video poker player, but I strongly suspect it’s better than the default slot machine percentages in that casino.) So, now that Pixie has coupons, we may go back and give them a little bit of business while I see how much poker I have to play to start getting coupons of my own.