Tag Archives: leeds

Gala Casino Problems – Typical of England?

Hi All,

Had a recent trip to the local Gala casino in Leeds for a cash session. My experience was, well, to be blunt, horrible. There’s a clear difference between how UK casinos see poker in comparison to the rest of the word and it simply leads me to ask the very simply question, why? My session was a winning one, yet I walked away feeling pretty angry, on tilt, and in fact went home at 4am and watched Rounders in HD to make me feel good about poker again..!

The night started off with a shambles of a waiting list. There was a piece of paper and a pen on an empty table, so my friend Dave and I wrote our names down (10th names downish) and decided to wait and see what would unfold. There was no floor manager walking around, and simply 2 £0.50/£1 tables (resembling $1/$2). On table 2 there was an empty seat… We decided to watch for a while, see what happens. 20 minutes later that seat was still empty, and in fact another one had opened up as well. There was no one stood around, no one claiming any of the empty seats, and the dealer not doing anything to signal it was reserved. Naturally, Dave and I decided to sit down.

Upon sitting down, 2 guys came up to us, and started complaining as they were a few names above us on the waiting list. I exclaimed that the seat I’d taken had been open up 20 minutes and no one had claimed it, to which the response was simply “it doesn’t matter, I was earlier than you on the list.” I ask Maddie, the dealer at the table, what her thoughts were as I’d imagine this decision is up to the people running the place to which she replied in quite a moody tone:
“It’s not up to me… Though he’s earlier so you should move”

I was a little stunned in all honesty. What she was saying in essence, was that empty seats are reserved indefinitely, and that players on the list have priority even after a seat has been taken…. To prevent alienating myself further, I gave up the seat and continued to wait.

Shortly after, a man with a stud earing who looked more like he was ready for a night out rather than running a casino floor walked past. He seemed to be some sort of boss as he mostly sat behind a desk next to the roulette tables… (If this is the poker desk, why is it in the roulette area..?). Anyway, I asked him about the waiting list and he explained higher people have priority. I explained the situation and how it was quite unfair, to which he replied “ok” and turned his back to me and walked off… To be fair, I was very friendly and trying to provide some constructive criticism, to which he was simply not interested.

Unfortunately the night got worse…

When sat at the table, 3 quite drunk men came and sat to the right. I’m used to drunks at a poker table from my time in Vegas, so this is nothing new. I knew I’d have to put up with some swearing, a bit of abuse, and a bit of blatant cheating… What I didn’t exepct was for these 3 things to happen almost every hand for 2 hours with no repercussions.

I’m going to repeat just a couple of phrases that were used without any response from one of the 2 dealers that dealt (one of them being our earlier Maddie):
1) “If you fucking call I’m going to fucking knock you out”
2) “This dealer is fucking shit. He’s not cut out for this fucking level” (due to one mistake talking about dealing a 0.50/1 game at a local casino in Leeds…. not the WSOP final table…)
3) “FUCK, I folded XX”

Now, I like to think I’m fair, and I can ignore the odd statement, but it was literally every hand, and for 2 or 3 hours not one dealer said anything… If a player complained, maybe something would be done about it, but why should I have to publicly complain and alienate myself to enforce that rules are in place?

Let’s compare this to a recent trip to Edgewater Casino in Vancouver, Canada.

I went into the place – There was an LCD screen with the waiting list on and all the tables for that cash game. I went to the clearly marked poker desk and added my name. I was given a buzzer and when a seat free’d up, it buzzed and I could take my seat.

When at the table, it was friendly and there were a few drunks. Every now and then the odd profanity slipped out. After 2 or 3 times, the friendly dealer explained we’re here for fun but try not to swear. The drunky apologised, had a laugh, we all had a good time and it was fun. What a huge difference……

Is the above just a pipe dream for what could be in England? Or will the casinos listen to the players and one day create a fun playing environment where we don’t walk away feeling like we’ve just played at the local police station holding area…. Hmmm

Disappointing, but at least it was a winning session right? 🙂

Anyway, that’s a wrap for this post. Folding time, see ya!


@my_casinos is the Gala twitter handle. After tweeting about my issues it appears Gala are going to follow this up and maybe take some action… Quite interesting, another reason why twitter is just brilliant. Anyway, I’ll update with any further details that may come out of this! And well done to Gala for embracing twitter but let’s hope it actually does cause action to be taken!

Tweet me @thejsug !

Update on Americaaa


So I’ve tried my best to keep in touch with all friends and family back from England, but of course it can be quite hard with the time difference and everyone’s busy lives, so just wanted to give an update as to what’s going on and when I’ll be back to see you all! 🙂

May 13th is my flight back to England. I’ll be staying in Buckingham for the weekend (where we’ll be partying for my sisters engagement! Congrats to her!), and then leaving for Leeds on May 17th. While working from Leeds, I also have the much anticipated court case, where I’ll hopefully win lots of money and get that idiot back once and for all (it’s been nearly 2 years now!!!!!!!)

As for coming back to San Francisco, who knows. This depends on how long the trial is, how much work I have to do in Leeds, and how many people I can visit in the short amount of time 🙂 Currently it’s looking quite flexible so I may just decide on a day while I’m actually in England. I imagine it will be between early and mid June but it really could be anything.

In terms of looking into the future… Well, this is more uncertain than Leeds United’s promotion campaign right now! (Had to fit them in somewhere!). The company will support an L1 visa for me, which will allow me to stay for a between 2 and 7 years with a possible opportunity for a green card if I’m not married or something by then. I’m not thinking about this too much right now as I’m not even eligible to apply till at least July, and we’re going to start talking to immigration lawyers within the next month to get some probabilities and expectancies. There are other considerations (personal, but also ones out of my control such as for the business), so to summarise, I still have no idea where I’ll be living post the summer! *gulp*

Really looking forward to coming back and visiting you all though, and if I do end up staying out here, look forward to you all coming out and visiting me!!!!!!

In terms of other updates, I’m back in Vegas on the 22nd of April for 8 days this time. I really don’t expect to make as much profit as my 4 days there last time, but whatever happens it’s fantastic real life poker experience. Afterall, I’m bankrolled for NL200 so I’m giving it a proper go. If I do end up making on scale as much money, it will be one hell of a consideration to my future… I don’t think I ever want to be a full-time pro, but if I can make decent money from it then maybe a regular vacation going forward! To ALL those people who STILL believe Poker is pure luck, me just gambling my life away, and skill making no difference in long term profitability… well… all I can say is… *shock*. You need to open your eyes a little bit 😉

Music wise, I’m going to see HIM on Monday – Old school love metal emo band haha. Revisiting my youth a little I guess, but it will be pretty fun I imagine. After that, I can’t plan to go to any gigs anywhere as I have no idea where I’ll be!

I’ve been reading about election mania of course and watched the first political debate… Bit disappointed with Cameron but Lib Dem’s improved reputation will only hurt Labour thus still improving Tories chances I believe… I might find it hard to vote from over here but I certainly hope to convince some of you back home to make the right choice! Anyone reading this is likely somewhat technical, thus hopefully you’re aware of Labour’s digital economy bill? If not, in short it will punish people who own networks where filesharing occurs (regardless if they’re to blame or not), and it will push organised online crime (such as paedophilia) further underground… It’s a joke, with so many holes, yet Labour have rushed it through Parliament. Get them out!!!!!

As you may already know I was at the first ever Twitter developer conference, Chirp, this week… Absolutely incredible – Not only do they store and analyse 7TB of data a DAY, but a standard query to count the amount of tweets (currently 12 bil) takes only 5 minutes to return due to their current database handling techniques. Very impressive. The after party with free drinks and Will I Am was also quite incredible, not that I remember much of the end of the night…!

Anyway as long as the volcanic ash clears up I’ll see you all in a few weeks! If you want to follow me on twitter hover over @thejsug !

Suggy out..

Tweet me @thejsug !