Here guys I will give you an exert from the book:
I survived a number of frightening and dangerous incidents in my formative years on Exchange Avenue. With the exception of a few incidents, they provided little humor and were always scary. One of my most terrifying episodes involved not a gun, but a knife. It happened in Houston in the sixties. I left a poker game alone one night and a guy slipped up behind me and put a knife to my throat. I'd faced guns before, but there was something different about a knife pressed against my throat, one or two inches away from slicing it open and ending my life. It scared the hell out of me. I was simply paralyzed with that blade leaning up against my skin. I thought for an instant my heart had stopped, and maybe it did.
"Just don't move. I'm gonna empty you out" the guy said.
He reached in my pocket and took what money I had, and away he went. That didn't happen again because I became leery of certain things around poker games
. I learned to avoid isolated places and strangers, and to routinely check to see if I was being followed. I became very observant. Most gamblers were instinctively alert to the dangers, especially the older ones who had experienced more robberies. It was part of self-survival.
And then there was Tooter. Tooter was a short, obese, four hundred pound bookie who spoke with a lisp. We were playing one day in his hometown of Lubbock, "The Pearl of the Plains," and we broke Tooter, who leaped up and left in a huff. A short time later, the door burst open and in charged a shotgun wielding figure wearing a ski mask. "Everybody put your handth
up" the intruder demanded, "and put your money in thith
bag." We turned around and saw who it was, and a guy named Bill Smith, another bookmaker, said "Aw, Tooter, put that silly shotgun down and come on and play." "Thith
isn't Tooter," Tooter said "Thith
is a wobber
." When the laughter finally subsided, Tooter reluctantly removed his mask, put down his gun, borrowed some more money, lost it all and left, once again in a huff. Overnight, Tooter the Wobber became a legend in Texas Circuit Lore.