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Casual or Hunch Deck

A reader says: In the Reno/Lake Tahoe area, there is no way to avoid constant attention, if not heat, with black-check action. I have found a gambling style of betting at single decks that is good for keeping the welcome mat out. Depending on what I think of the bottom card (viewed as I cut, by a hopefully undetectable motion of arm and wrist), I play either a "casual" or "hunch" deck. If I see a 3, 4, 5, or 6, I play a hunch deck; with any other card on the bottom, I play a casual deck.

A hunch deck starts with three hands, each bet at the maximum. Sometimes the bets are graduated, $300 on the first hand, $400 on the second hand, and $500 on the third. My attention is rapt. I sustain this betting level for three rounds if I maintain an advantage, however slight. If I lose the advantage, I immediately cut back to one hand of $100 or so.

A casual deck begins with one hand of $100, and I try to appear to be only slightly interested, chatting to anyone who will listen. If the count warrants it, I might progress to higher bets.

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The Inside Straight
In general, follow three principles on the flop in high-low crazy pineapple:
- If your hand has a good chance of scooping, play.
- If your hand has an extremely good chance of winning one way, play.
- If your hand has only a moderate chance of winning one way, get out.
The same starting cards are good in crazy pineapple as in regular pineapple, although coordinated holdings are even more valuable.
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