I was playing $5 NSU Deuces Wild at Harrah’s Cherokee on a recent Seven Stars trip. This casino is one of many that will not let you accumulate credits on your machine greater than $2,999.99. If I have $2,900 in credits immediately after the deal and I end up with a $100 quad or full house, the machine will “spit” out a $100 ticket and I’ll keep the $2,900 in accumulated credits.
On the next hand, where the credits are reduced to $2,875 because a max-coin bet consists of $25, if I connect on a straight flush ($250), five of a kind ($400), or a wild royal flush ($625), the machine will spit out another ticket. Four deuces ($5,000) and royal flushes ($20,000) do not spit out tickets. The machines will lock up
out and wait for an attendant to pay you after signing a tax form.
Many casinos have such a limit. While $3,000 is the most common limit, I’ve played at casinos with other limits as well. The slot director can set basically any limit on any machine.
Decades ago, I coined the word “spittage” for machines spitting out these tickets when you exceed the limit. There are times when you get close to the limit and get frequent spittage, essentially back-to-back.
I get more than my share of spittage at this casino simply because I take out a $20,000 marker at the start of each trip, consisting of eight $2,500 TITOs. When I hit a taxable, I simply ask for more TITOs in the same size. When my credits go to zero (as they inevitably do over time), I simply reload my credits to $2,500 again. When you start from $2,500, it doesn’t take much to reach the $3,000 threshold.
This spittage doesn’t mean I’m winning on the day. I can be down $5,000 on the day, insert another $2,500 ticket, immediately connect on a wild royal, and the machine will spit out a $625 ticket. I’d still be down $4,400 on the day.
I’ve been told by a slot department executive at this casino that I may play on Bonnie’s card only if she’s seated next to me while I play. I abide by this directive. Bonnie brings her iPhone loaded with audiobooks, Netflix, and music and keeps me company while I play.
One day I hit a $625 dirty royal (i.e., a RF with at least one wild card) which happened to generate a ticket, so I exclaimed, “Spittage!” Bonnie was unaware that this was a word (it’s not!) and it sounded to her like I was saying, “Spinach!” She is concentrating on her audiobook and doesn’t know how much I’m up or down for the day, but she knows that a ticket spitting out is good, so she smiles.
On the next hand, it happened that I received an identically-sized jackpot, so after I proclaimed, “Spittage!” Bonnie echoed, “Spinach!”
Thereafter, I kept my credits relatively high if she was sitting next to me. If I have a $625 and a $100 ticket from earlier spittage and my credits get down to $2,000 or less, I’ll insert the previously-generated TITOs in order to top off my credits. Once my credits are close to $3,000, spittage is fairly common. And nearby players can hear us both:
If I’m playing on my card and she’s not by my side, I don’t bother to keep my credits topped off. I still notice when I generate spittage, of course, but I don’t announce it out loud. When my credits go to zero, I’ll insert whatever TITOs I have and when those go to zero, put in another $2,500 ticket.
“Spittage!” followed by “Spinach!” is “our” custom. Togetherness in a casino takes many forms!