Let’s paint a picture. You’re walking through the casino, trying to decide where next to put your stake into play. You think blackjack, but the blackjack limits are too high just here and just now. So then you think craps, but they’re six deep around the craps table and you can’t even get close. Slots? Maybe another time. Sports book? Not your cup of tea.


Then… as you have so many times before… you notice the poker room, over there in a corner, separated from the rest of the casino by a low wooden rail and a certain aura that makes it seem foreign, distant and strange. Not for the first time, you think that you’d maybe like to take a shot at public poker. After all, you know the basics of the game from having played with the family as a kid or with friends in college or beyond. But there’s something so off-putting about that… that… room. The players all seem so confident, and their confidence is intimidating. It makes you want to walk away.


You have two fears. The first – that you might lose your money – is one you can deal with. It’s part of the casino experience; you know that. But the second fear – the fear of looking foolish – that’s a little harder to get over. Those people in there, they all know what they’re doing. If you join them (so you believe) you’ll betray yourself as a novice immediately. They will mock and disrespect you and heap scorn upon you. So you believe. And so you take another look at the blackjack table or the money wheel or even keno. And your brief flirtation with casino poker ends. Because a little thing called fear held you back.


Suppose …