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A Congratulatory from Pala University

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Trip Reports' started by spinette, Feb 6, 2017.

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  1. spinette

    spinette Low-Roller

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    My Trip Report

    The Application

    Up until mid-December of last year, I had only a tepid interest in playing at Pala casino, one of several tribal options here in the Southwest. However, other students were getting some very good offers with grade-point averages that didn't seem all that high.

    On December 15th, 2016, I submitted an application to Pala University's School of Gambling. Included was the following statement of purpose:

    Dear Admissions Committee,

    As a child, I never wanted to play a stupid 97% game, even for a free buffet coupon. I always tried playing full-pay versions of my favorite video poker setups, which feature, among several options, 9-over-6 Jacks or Better returning 99.54% with good strategy; and deuces wild, returning 100.74% when played well. To become more well-rounded, I participated in extracurricular activities such as requesting coffee from the coctail, vulturing Ultimate X, and paying for drinks at the bar. But even with this valuable experience, I could not seem to keep cadence with my peers who were getting generous University scholarships.

    These experiences have been valuable and have encouraged me to broaden my academics. You will find that my portfolio includes a diverse set of assets, and I hope that the Committee will appreciate my credentials.

    Kind regards,

    Spinette

    Next: The Envelope
     
  2. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    I trust they have a decent :feedme: dining plan!

    Here's hoping your application went through with flying colors! :beer:

    I eagerly await the news contained within the envelope!

    RICHARD
     
  3. spinette

    spinette Low-Roller

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    While assembling my application materials on December 15th, an older, robust-looking man with a Persian accent came down to me and said I was eligible for a campus visit. Included was a slot tournament with tens of other applicants, although transportation was to be borne by the prospect. I told this man I could not attend because of the cost of transportation, but that if the University really wanted me to be part of the Class of 2017, they could arrange for a limousine--a 54-seat limousine with a "class A" driver.

    On January 30th, 2017, with my fingernails gnawed to the quick, I found an envelope from Pala University. This was a small envelope, and so I thought they sent me a rejection letter for refusing their campus visit. I opened it up, and the letter (printed on goldenrod) read substantially thus:

    Dear Spinette,

    We have reviewed your application package and supporting materials. Based on your total coin-in of $6,500 and accrual-basis loss of about $110, we are delighted to extend an invitation to you to attend Pala as part of the class of 2017. (YESSSSS!!) We have scheduled convocation for February 8th-9th, 2017, and ask that you accept our offer of an on-campus room for each of those nights along with $15 in free slot credit x 5. A departmental orientation for the Department of Fish and Game will be held the following week and will include complimentary appetizers (to probably include seafood) and open bar in our premier venue.

    Additionally, the Committee finds your performance in prior coursework commendable; you will be granted advanced tier status as a result.

    We graciously hope that you will accept our invitation and we wish you a fulfilling academic career at whichever institution you decide to attend.

    Regards,

    Pala University
     
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  4. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    YESSSS!!!!!
    Your folks must be so proud! :thumbsup:

    Good things do come in small packages!
    (My bride shakes her head and laughs.)

    Congratulations!

    RICHARD
     
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  5. spinette

    spinette Low-Roller

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    Thank you for your kind wishes! Yes, everyone is very excited. Forthcoming: Travel.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2017
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  6. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    Awesome!
    Safe travels!
    Pala U or Bust!
    Go PU!
    (Okay, maybe that's not the best one to say!) :D

    RICHARD
     
  7. spinette

    spinette Low-Roller

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    Travel

    Pala University insists that its VIPs travel by stretch limo: this limo left at about 8 A.M. and had 15-20 students. There were mountains in the background with majestic white caps from recent storms. We passed over some foothills and into the valley. Two hours later, we met our host and saw flanking lion figures with free money on the left and some kind of strange fruit on the right.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. yube baroke

    yube baroke Tourist

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    Ok...I'll be honest...at first, I was like WTF? Pala U? What is all this BS? Lol. Now, I see your creative writing and it is quite interesting. Let's see some Straight A's...with kickers!
     
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  9. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    Oh, thank goodness!
    I was hoping you wouldn't have to arrange a rideshare through Craigslist! :biker:

    RICHARD
     
  10. spinette

    spinette Low-Roller

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    Convocation

    After a fantastic welcome breakfast of 4 huge blueberry pancakes, I enrolled in classes. On my study list:

    Introduction to 8/6 Jacks or Better (5 units)
    Low-Limit Slots Laboratory (1 unit)

    Sometimes taking a full load can lead to financial burnout, and I made sure to "audit" courses in advance. Based on the amount of good screaming, I chose 8/6 JoB as my core course and added an elective to broaden my repertoire.

    Oof. Classes were rough, and I lost 300 points (that's $300) by trying to take a senior-level, 30-unit Ultimate X course. It was clear I needed more prep, and as an underclassman, I probably should have known better. My score on UX was failing (with $100 lost in just 5 minutes), but I did score several 5's on 8/6 Jacks. This brought my GPA to $3,300 coin-in, and I figure I'll need a GPA of about $7,000 to be allowed to enroll next term with financial aid.

    Pala's faculty also asked that I participate in a two-part slot tournament with about 240 others in the class of 2017. The top 40 scores get extra credit (anywhere from $100 to $10k) and session winners are paid. In my essay "I seem to come in dead last in slot tourneys", I discussed my talents and broad skill-set, noting that my performance has historically been deep in the order purely because of "soft" factors like motivation. Nonetheless, I was invited, encouraged, seated, engaged, and ranked. First session: 12th place in 19.

    Coincidentally, I was just invited to a VP tourney scheduled, coincidentally, for the Ides of March.
    Surely I am not the Aeneas of video poker, but perhaps they saw that I had talent.

    More to come!
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2017
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  11. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    I was thinking you'd test out of LL Slots Lab!

    Is Professor Max Spin still around? If so, be careful around him. He doesn't like it when people push his buttons!

    So W-2Gs must be your transcripts, right? :D

    RICHARD
     
  12. spinette

    spinette Low-Roller

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    Rush Week

    Because of the area's proximity to Las Vegas, there are several other schools nearby. I decided to rush ΥΥΚH (an initialism for Valley View Casino and Hotel) by taking a chariot (transit bus) through the folds of Parnassus because of an invitation. It may have been my Greek affiliation or my time in their VP "library" that compelled my brothers and sisters to send me $15 in free play, a free buffet, and a VIP line-cutter pass, but nevermind the real reason.

    The serpentine approach conjured images of the Eleusinian mysteries, but the real questions would be: (1) are there trolls hiding in the lobster, and (2) how much line would there be to cut? At about 3:50 PM, I arrived and went to the slot club to get my buffet and cuts. Sister Jane Doe Alpha noticed that I had a special "code" near my account regarding a letter I sent back in December.... Alpha et al. did not seem particularly pleased about the note (and the letter that was sent was not congratulatory in nature), and there was a mix of awkward silence and chiding laughter. But a casino host came out and led me into a VIP area. Jane Doe Beta apologized for the inconvenience for the first time, noticed it was the "9th" of February, indicated that her cellphone was mine (along with a few other superstitions) before writing me a line pass and giving me her card in case any other issues arose during Rush. I felt it was a very yeah-whateverish moment in there, but I may be superstitious. So aside from the golden uraeus and woven basket, there was a go-to-the-front-of-the-line ticket and a middle finger.

    Okay, I'm starting off well! Sometimes being a plebe is tough, but I assure you this is (much) more than my first time rushing YYKH. Gaming studies were largely uneventful, except that some of their slot courses are comparatively easy to at least get a 90% in. DDB--Double Double Bonus, sometimes called Double Trouble Bonus--was trouble: This was a splendid failure at 60% hold and with only 1 4OAK.

    On to Bacchanal Buffet. Actually, the head of Caesar's dining once headed YYKH's food service, but radiometric dating showed that some of the food was older than your pet dinosaur and that the dynastic head was long gone. On the good side, the wait staff were above average and the dining plan seemed worth the ride over, until...yes, the lobster. It wasn't enough to meet many disinterested and surly casino/bar staff, and the person handing out the shrimp-tail lobsters seemed stolid and mean. (He just seemed like he hated his job and wanted to shoot us with an elephant gun. Like, wow.) But okay. So the carving station was very meh and not being a good student of meat prep, I asked "medium rare" and was given a slab of meat that was cold: it did not need to be cooked further as it appeared medium, but the whole thing was cold and I really wish I had asked for it to be grilled.

    Now in Egyptian myth, we learn that "westing" represents death (to be followed by "easting," or reincarnation). These lobster tails were well-wested and should have been well-rested in the garbage can: they were mushy and hence old. So cold meat, bad lobster, and the possibility of food poisoning. Hazing, hazing! So absolutely terrible, and to think YYKH was once up to the high standards of CET!

    Detention

    Catching the same chariot back was supposed to be easy. However, I felt this phantom urge to go out to the stop a few minutes early. I got on the bus and, 45 minutes later, noticed that it pulled up to a transit depot and went out of service. Then I realized suddenly: Got. On. The. Wrong. Bus. So instead of paying 75 cents to return to the hotel, I had to ride in the back of a taxi (no cell, no uber...these are ancient greek times, remember) and pay 58 dollars to return to the casino, which, by the way, would have been the cost to drive myself to school, tour locally, and return to my area, fuel and wear and tear included. Maybe it was the complaining or poor humor at Rush. But that is the most expensive bus I did not ride in the history of my gambling education.

    To come: Closing.
     
  13. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    This TR has me considering going back to school!

    RICHARD
     
  14. spinette

    spinette Low-Roller

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    Don't miss the school bus!!
     
  15. sporty8705

    sporty8705 VIP Whale

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    I was invited to a slot tournament there once. I placed first in my session, and like 5th overall out of 250.. my grandma played in it too, back in like 2013/2014..
     
  16. spinette

    spinette Low-Roller

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    Closing

    At 10 A.M., I was just too tired to shower and pack within the hour, so I called downstairs and got a late checkout. It is true: all good things must come to an end. Goodbye, appurtenances of school--that is, goodbye Keurig coffee maker. Goodbye, deluxe showerhead and spa-like bathtub. So long, bottled water! And goodbye, Mountain View.

    It was time to say goodbye. I checked out of the hotel, took advantage of the cafeteria dining plan one last time, played Megaman on my laptop at Caffe Amore (security: "I guess we need to open a Starbucks."), and then went to the school bus. Off we went, and I arrived to a rainstorm and took yet another bus back home. The next day, I received my transcript:

    8/6 Jacks or Better 85%
    Low-Limit Slots Laboratory 125%
    Introduction to Breakfast at Cafe Pass
    Elective in Tournament Play 16th/38 (class rank)
    Field Trip: Hotel Stay B+

    A fantastic demarche! I felt like the Sultan of Brunei much of the time, and had a good time at the casino.Thanks for reading!
     
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  17. TIMSPEED

    TIMSPEED The biggest Degenerate on VMB

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    Where da picherz?
     
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  18. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    I hope you make the Dean's List!
    Thanks for sharing!

    RICHARD
     
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