THE MOVE TO GET OUT

 

 

    Learning about the casinos after I was in Taiwan made me start to think more about my survival on the planet.  I wanted to get out even more than before, but I knew that no one just quit the Mafia.  Even though I was not "in" with "The Boys" I had a feeling no one walked away from that job and got to live to tell about it.  They might kill me and make it look like a robbery attempt.  My only solution was to start networking myself in with them so when I left they would think I wouldn't say anything to anyone.  I had to have them believing that I was totally brainwashed to the point where I considered myself one of them.

    The summer of 1985 went good for that, but it could have been better.

    I didn't like the job, but I kept working as much as I could.  After a while I felt the money just wasn't worth the aggravation of the job, so I became the E.O. king. Every morning or afternoon, before starting work, I would go into the scheduling office and sign the early-out list.  If I saw the Box and Floor for that game was to be someone I enjoyed working with, and their relief was OK, I would stay, unless my roommates had something going on for the day.  There were a lot of days I went home with under two hours work put in.  Sometimes I was out in twenty minutes.

    At this time I was becoming friends with Tommy Kraft, a dealer who started in October of 1984. We first began to talk after he was having the same problems breaking-in as I was. Why he came to me for guidance I could only guess.  Although, after he told me his father used to drive truck for the Mafia to help out with the bills, I figured he was one of them as well and was sent to work on me.

    Tommy would invite me out for a drink after work and I would go.  After a few times of getting away with that, since I was still under the age of 21, I was going out with the big boys.

    You can really learn a lot about the people you work with when you are with them outside of work.  I hated doing that.  The one thing I learned about my supervisors was they could not stop talking about the job. Even at La Sleaze, the bar where the Bally's crowd gathered after work, they would talk shop and try to work on me.

    I will never forget the night of my 21st birthday, which came towards the end of that summer. After work I invited Beetle and a Boxman named Gaffney Hargis to my home as part of my networking strategy.  All they wanted to do was get me "in" with The Boys. They kept talking shop and making statements like, "Isn't it great how whenever there is a major beef over a bet about to get ugly or each time the points are marked wrong, the seven out rolls just in time to save the crew?"  I knew what they were getting at.  I quickly changed the subject and played Beetle in a game of chess.  From that night onward Gaffney not only sat box for me seldom, but when he did he was not as nice as he used to be.  Also, for a while we never got the same breaks together, and when we did, he hardly spoke to me. I wondered if it was because he failed in converting me. I saw the same thing happening all over with the people who would talk to me outside of work.

 

    In September of 1985, I was with the friend who persuaded me into staying in the Deprivation of Liberty class.  We were sitting in his living room, smoking hash under glass, when he asked if I wanted to see something unique.  We moved to his bedroom and smoked there for a while.

    He went to the door, closed it, and instructed me to cover my eyes.  When I took my hands off of them the lights were turned off and the entire ceiling was glowing.  Dots were everywhere.

    I was intrigued.  I had to know how to do it so I could do the same to my ceiling.  He told me what to do and the first chance I got I stopped in the hobby store to get some of this special paint.

    When I started to paint my ceiling I didn't just throw it around.  I wanted something more distinctive.  I wanted to make it appear just like the stars under the heavens.

    I took out my Atlas, which had a star chart of the northern hemisphere.  It was about eleven inches in diameter.  I wanted to put this on a twelve-foot square section of my ceiling, so it was time to put the geometry to work.

    Measuring the chart in millimeters, I scaled it to fit a twelve-foot by twelve-foot section of the bedroom ceiling.  I measured the angles and made patterns on shopping bags.  From there, I placed the first pattern on the ceiling and painted over the dots marked with a pencil.  It was a process that took each design between two and three hours to complete.  But it was becoming worth it.  After about six weeks of doing that each night after work, I became tired of it.

    I still enjoyed the painting and would look up to it for guidance every night before nodding off.  From it, I realized the beauty of the universe and the heavens and that got me a bit closer to my creator. I began to stare at the unfinished painting and would ask God what I could do to make the world a better place.  On the third night, I received my answer.

    The answer had come: write a book about the corruption of the casino industry.  The fear of having a contract on my life did not concern me at that time. I wanted to get even--at any cost--with those bastards at Bally's Park Place who made my life a living hell.  Most importantly, I wanted to help Jah. But how would I do that? The answer came; make murals of your painting for all to marvel at and you will have the money to give you the time to write, while enriching many other souls. It made sense to me. Whenever I told this story to family or friends I would leave out the part about the final goal being to write this book.  My old roommate Neil will tell you that he gave me the idea.  He didn't. The real idea came from God.

    It was on that night that I first realized the job you did was just as important as the work you did afterwards.  That is in the regard that you should take pride in your work.  Work being what you do from your heart and a job being what you will do for money.  We should all do something that benefits society and I was not doing that at all.

    But running the new business I was planning was going to take some knowledge about the product.  I didn't know much about the stars, so I decided to go back to Stockton in the spring of 1986.  Neil was now gone at this time and I was happy about that. But at school I would be able to look forward to a life outside and far removed from the paranoia of working in the casino.

    I took four classes: Astronomy, Introduction to Philosophy, the Science of Navigation, and Atoms, Man, and the Universe.  Astronomy was too difficult for me.  On the first night of class the professor put a formula on the board to measure the distance of the Sun to the Earth and the moon to us as well.  It involved calculus, which I had no knowledge of.  I had to drop the class.  Atoms, Man, and the Universe was a great class, although, I failed it because the night before the final I spent in bed with a friend rather than studying. Still, I went to every class and was able to learn a lot.  I used my notes to write the booklet that came with the finished product.

 
 
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Dedication

Behind These Eyes

Chapter  1 - OVERTURE

Chapter  2 - IN THE BEGINNING

Chapter  3 - MY FIRST SHOT

Chapter  4 - CHAD AND THE DEALER

Chapter  5 - THE DECISION TO DEAL

Chapter  6 - LICENSE TO STEAL

Chapter  7 - CASINO SCHOOL

Chapter  8 - SPRING '84

Chapter  9 - GETTING IN--THE AUDITION

Chapter 10 - BREAKING IN

Chapter 11 - LEARNING THE BIZ

Chapter 12 - SHOOTING DICE: THE HOOK

Chapter 13 - THE CITY, THE CASINOS, AND THE MOB

Chapter 14 - THE MOVE TO GET OUT

Chapter 15 - FIRED BY THE MAFIA

Chapter 16 - ALONG COMES MARY

Chapter 17 - THE TROP

Chapter 18 - OUTSIDE THE BIZ

Chapter 19 - BACK IN THE BIZ--ANOTHER AUDITION

Chapter 20 - THE BIRTH OF NICOLE

Chapter 21 - TRUMP: THE ART OF THE STEAL

Chapter 22 - PREVIEWS OF THINGS TO COME

Chapter 23 - THE BREAK-UP

Chapter 24 - THE NUT HOUSE

Chapter 25 - RECOVERY

Chapter 26 - PARENTAL ALIENATION

Chapter 27 - FIRED FROM TRUMP

Chapter 28 - I FIGHT FOR NICOLE

Chapter 29 - THE RUN-A-ROUND

Chapter 30 - THROWING IN THE TOWEL

Chapter 31 - WHAT NOW

GLOSSARY