What is ‘Jinx’?
Jinx is a synonym for ‘curse’ or sometimes ‘spell’. It refers to old superstitions in which a person could be hit with bad luck or ill fortune. The term appears often in gambling to describe a person who is having bad luck, a person thought to bring bad luck, or the reason for a cold streak at the tables.
In the gambling world, the phrase jinx refers to bad luck, or sometimes to the cause of it. A player might refer to a jinx or a curse – a cold streak which they cannot shake, leading to large losses. Players might also say that someone or something has jinxed them: a superstitious idea that a certain event or action is the cause of their bad luck.
Gamblers will always experience fluctuations in their luck over time, and when the house edge is taken into consideration, the player is likely to win just under half of the time with an overall loss more than probable in the long term. However, many gamblers believe in runs of good luck and bad, and also in different factors that affect luck. A player experiencing bad luck might say that they have been jinxed or they are suffering the effects of a jinx.
There are a lot of superstitions in gambling. Many players believe in hot streaks and cold streaks – runs of wins and losses which they directly attribute to the concept of luck. Some players will avoid tables where other players are losing and look for tables with happy players holding lots of chips – even though the odds are random and the same at any given table on any given night. Similarly, a player who feels they are suffering from a jinx has (probably) not been hit by a curse, they are just experiencing the natural fluctuations of the game.