I’ve struggled to come up with anything, so I’ve decided to write back-stories on some of the characters in the script. Today, I’ll start with the protagonist, Sam Weinstein.
Sam is a vascular surgeon for Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit. He’s been there thirty years. His residency was there and he’s lived in or near Detroit his entire life. He met his wife, Claire, during his residency at the hospital. She was a registered nurse. Claire was unable to conceive, so they never had children.
Several years ago, Sam’s hands started trembling. He has a family history of Parkinson’s disease, so fearing the worst, he refused to get it checked. As a vascular surgeon, he struggles with the guilt every time he goes into surgery and it has started affecting his ability to do his job. Sam’s hand will start to tremble while performing surgery and, while he’s unsure, he believes that he may have nicked one of Claire’s arteries while he was performing an aorto-bifemoral bypass on her and missed it while sewing her back up. She would later bleed to death internally. Sam still hasn’t recovered. To deal with the guilt, he started drinking….heavily. Today, he lives his life in a fog-like stupor of alcohol and regret and the only thing that makes him feel alive is the casino.
Sam likes to gamble, and with the kind of money they made, he gambles a lot. The only problem is, that when you have that kind of money, to feel the rush of winning or losing, you have to bet amounts that can actually hurt you. And in the past several years, Sam has done just that. He likes all the table games, roulette, craps, blackjack, pai gow poker, etc. He plays in the VIP room of Greektown Casino and it isn’t unusual for him to lose $2500 to $5,000 a sitting.
Rather then selling off investments to pay for the gambling habit, Sam turned to Jimmy Dimitrios (aka Jimmy the Greek) for loans.
This song reminds me of Sam: