So I went and knocked on Jane Doe's door. Told her that pinochle was for silly little children and seriously cranky old men. Poker was much better. Much, much better. It's what the cool people play.
Jane shook her head and frowned. She reminded me of all the trials and tribulations she faced the first time she tried to learn even a little bit about poker. "Not gonna do that again," she said, "It's way too frustrating."
No worries, I replied. I'll teach you all about poker. From the most basic basics, to the most advanced concepts. I've been through it before myself and learned the hard way. I am now kind of an expert at the low-stakes poker tables. I can teach you how to win.
"It's too complicated," she said, the frown still on her face. "How can you possibly teach me everything I need to know without my head exploding?"
Easy, I said. I have a system. A step-by-step, logical progression of lessons to teach a new player how to master the game.
The frown was gone, but she still seemed skeptical. "How does it work?"
It's based on a couple of key ideas, but everything stems from the basic gambler's concept of expected value. Then it's just a series of lessons, each of which builds upon the previous lesson.
"That sounds fishy," she said. "How do I know this isn't some kind of scam?"
It's not, I said. Trust me. Just give it a try. What do you have to lose?
The frown was gone, replaced with the hint of a smile. "You really will teach me?" she asked.
Yes, I said. I will.
Really, I repeated.
"Bug, you're my hero!"
I touch the brim of my white Stetson. Just doing my job, ma'am. Now let's get started.
All-in for now...