I have written about some of the wild streaks that have happened at the game of roulette in my book Spin Roulette Gold and in articles for this website. Roulette has had amazing events happen over the centuries and many roulette players have been privileged or, yes, cursed to be at the game when such events happen.

I decided to ask inveterate roulette players what were some of the outstandingly weird, wild, wacky and turbulent things that have happened at the table when they played. 

Betting System Gone Bad

Theresa:  You know the idea that is called the Martingale betting system? Well, I saw the same guy one three-day weekend, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, use it twice and both times he got to the end of it and lost. The losses were gigantic. He was a $25 player and he just kept doubling up after his losses.

He was at the roulette table every time I went there so he was an avid player. The casino floor person and pit boss knew him well and so did most of the dealers. He used that Martingale all the time and most times he would win that $25 but his wins could not approach how much he lost when he got to the end and couldn’t bet any higher.

I felt sorry for him because he tried to pretend that the losses meant nothing to him but I could see he was upset. I don’t think the players who use the Martingale realize that they are asking to get hurt really bad if it doesn’t work out for them.

Martingale Madness

Melvin:  Martingale? Martingale? Tell me about it. This was about 10 years ago and this one guy was playing it but he wasn’t just betting the same bet, you know like “high-low” or something like that. He would jump around. He’d bet $10 on say the “red” and if he lost, he’d bet $20 on the “odd” so he would bet different wagers but he kept losing during one session and he was getting angry because he kept losing.  

And when he bet “red” and lost and then he’d bet, you know, “high” and then “red” would hit and he’d get furious. He started to say that the dealers had it against him. He even complained to the supervisor and asked if they had fixed the wheel so he could lose tonight because he beat them yesterday. One time he did this and on the next spin he won his bet. He took that as confirmation that they were fixing the wheel against him because as soon as he complained he won his bet.

I would say this guy was the most obnoxious roulette player I ever saw at a table. Usually roulette players don’t blame the casino when they lose. They just groan. Roulette players know the game is random. Or they better.

This guy had a persecution complex. I think he thought he was in a movie or something. When I would come to the roulette tables the next few days, I avoided every table that he was playing at. He made the game miserable. He never stopped complaining even on the times he was winning.

Roulette Table

Doubling Up

Joseph: This happened just two years ago, just before COVID-19. It was a young man and his girlfriend. He bet $10 on a number, I think it might have been the number 30, and he hit. That paid him $350. 

He parlayed the bet. He now had $360 on the number 30. Of course, everyone at the table was now rooting for him to hit his number again. When the dealer called “no more bets,” we all waited with excitement. I’d never seen anyone parlay a straight bet on a number, although a couple of times I have seen a number hit twice in a row. But this was a whole new ballgame.

The ball spun and spun then landed and bounced a few times and settled in a pocket. It hit! The number hit a second time! The table went berserk. It was as if we all won that bet. 

Now the kid said, “I’m going to parley again!” Everyone at the table was shocked. Could the same number hit three times in a row? The floor person came over and said, “You’d be over the table maximum, sir.”

One idiot yelled out, “Let him bet! Let him bet!” The rest of us at the table thought going for a third hit was nuts. 

The kid laughed, “I’m not going for a third time. What do you think, am I crazy? Nope. I’m taking my winnings. I just wanted to see how everyone would react.” Everyone did react – we all applauded. And that’s what he did. He took his winnings and left the table.

Name a Number Game

Peggy: I called the man “name a number” because when he came to the table, he asked us what number we’d like to play. There were five of us, and him, at the table. We each said a number and he put $50 on the numbers we had chosen. He also put a $50 bet on each of our numbers and then on one of his own.

Now you would think the guy was drunk, right? No, he wasn’t. He was this happy fellow. I don’t know why he did that but when we all lost, and we did all lose, he asked us for another number and he did the same thing. 

One of our numbers hit. He was on the number too. We all cheered. Heck, we were playing for bigger stakes than we normally would and it wasn’t even our money. But after that win, that was that. He left the table and I didn’t see him again for the rest of my trip. 

Those of us at the table asked if any of us had ever seen the guy before. None of us had. What about the dealers? None of them had. The floor person and pit boss? Neither had ever seen him before. 

The “name a number” man will never be forgotten by those of us who were at the table with him. Why he did what he did, I have no idea, but it was fun being part of it.

Five Times the Fun

Karen: In a scoreboard of twenty numbers, I saw the same number hit five times. Not back-to-back but five times in total. What did everybody do? Everyone bet the number. It didn’t hit again for the next twenty spins and everyone was kind of down. We all thought we had found a biased wheel and what we found was essentially nothing.

I asked the dealer if she had ever seen anything like that and she said, “When you are at the game every day you see a lot of strange things. Had it gone six times it would be the most I ever saw.”

Well, I never saw anything like that before or after this. But I am not at a wheel every day so who knows what happens.

Roulette Player

Causing a Major Scene

Laura: Roulette players are not usually the angry types. You lose, you just kind of take it. That’s part of the game. You win some, you lose some. Until this one time, I had never seen anyone go crazy at a table.

I like roulette players for their temperament. This man, with a heavy accent from who knows where, was drinking a little too much and every time he lost, he cursed under his breath. At first the curse was a whisper but it slowly got louder and louder.

I was uncomfortable and some other players were too but all the roulette tables were packed with players so we stayed at this one. That was in retrospect a big mistake.

The man was betting a bunch of inside numbers. A couple of times he did win but his losses were really mounting and he kept increasing his bets too. I would say the man was taking a hammering.

Then he started yelling at the dealer and asked that she be removed from the table. The pit boss came over and told him that the dealer was doing her shift and that the man could write a letter of complaint if he wanted to. He smiled at the rest of us, and we smiled at his joke, but his joke did not hit the, shall I call him the gentleman, as funny.

No, it did not. The man then started saying that he didn’t like people to make fun of him. He wouldn’t take that from anyone. 

The pit boss saw that this was getting out of hand and he immediately apologized to the man and asked the man if he’d like a comp to the buffet. The man got even angrier. “The buffet? The buffet? You dog! You pig!” 

“It’s okay, sir. It is okay, calm down,” said the pit boss.

The man then threw his drink at the pit boss. He didn’t just throw the liquid out of the glass but the whole glass, which got a bunch of us wet at the table. The glass hit the pit boss and then the man swept his arm right over the layout knocking over the piles of chips, sending most of them flying off the table.

We all jumped up and the man leapt onto the layout. Then the security arrived and these weren’t the old folks you see in uniforms standing around and acting like security, but they were younger men and women. They grabbed the man, who was thrashing to get to the pit boss, and dragged him off the table. 

The man thought he’d fight the security people. That was stupid. They had him on the floor in about a second and he was then handcuffed. A little while later the man threw up and they took him to wherever they take people like him. 

The pit boss said that they would give us our bets when they looked at the tape and we gave him our room numbers, those of us who were staying there, and we departed the area.

The roulette table was closed and we all made our way to other tables or to some place else, as the casino was crowded and there weren’t many spots at other tables available. I went to the bar and ordered a drink. And gave all of this some thought.

Roulette is a great game and this man was unique in my experience. Okay, people don’t like to lose. That’s a given. But that behavior is totally unacceptable at a game. If you can’t handle playing then don’t play. He should take up knitting.

Lucky Numbers For a Great Night

Doris: Let’s talk about a great night at the table; the greatest night I’ve ever had. I bet three numbers straight up. They are 7, 22, and 28. I was 7 when my father died. I was 22 when I got married. I was 28 when I had my only child.

Are these my lucky numbers? Not more or less than any other numbers would be. I know the game is random as is the lottery where I play these numbers too. Occasionally I’ll win something, more often I lose. I think that is everyone’s experience at games of chance. You win a few and you lose a few more.

But this one night, my numbers were on fire. They didn’t hit every spin but they hit enough that I was piling up the chips. 

I felt as if I was in another world. It didn’t seem real after a time. I thought I was in a dream but it wasn’t a dream; it was real life. The dealer would congratulate me every time I won. 

Other players started to bet my numbers and they won too. How could all of this be real? But it was. It was real.

I won’t tell you how much I won but it was the most I have ever won in my life at anything. I can say that it was a glorious evening at the roulette table.

All the best in and out of the casinos!

About the Author

Frank Scoblete grew up in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. He spent the ‘60s getting an education; the ‘70s in editing, writing and publishing; the ‘80s in theatre, and the ‘90s and the 2000s in casino gambling.

Along the way he taught English for 33 years. He has authored 35 books; his most recent publisher is Triumph Books, a division of Random House. He lives in Long Island. Frank wrote the Ultimate Roulette Strategy Guide and he's a well known casino specialist.