Wrong number

This was a really funny piece from the LV Sun:

At least on the surface, this is a fight about a number: 7.

That digit is the only difference between the phone number of Michael Kolar’s income tax filing business, 866-MR-REFUN (866-677-3386), and the number people dial when they have questions about any of the seven properties owned by Ameristar Casinos Inc., which is 866-MORE-FUN (866-667-3386).

Written out, they look different. Punched on a key pad, they’re practically the same. And dozens of people mix up the two every month. This wouldn’t be a problem if Ameristar, a Las Vegas-based company, weren’t convinced Kolar, aka Mr. Refund, is taking calls intended for the casino corporation and saying cruel things — pretending to take reservations, offering callers specialized suites that do not exist, telling callers the casino company issues coupons to lure problem gamblers, that room rates are much higher than advertised and that any number of the hotels have burned down.

Kolar denies these allegations. And because he has to pay for the calls that come in to his toll-free number, he proposed a simple solution: Pay him $100 a month to tell callers looking for Ameristar they had dialed the wrong number.

Ameristar was not interested in that offer. Instead, it sued.

The lawsuit was filed against Kolar in Illinois, where he lives, and accuses Mr. Refund of malicious conduct designed to injure Ameristar. The company, whose closest casino is Cactus Pete’s in Jackpot, near the Idaho border, is asking the court to make Kolar surrender his phone number permanently.

Misdial casino, you may get Mr. Refund – Las Vegas Sun.

This guy may or may not be a jerk, but at least he’s creative. Anyone who can sell tourists “specialized suites that do not exist” is a genius. It’s a casino hotel room–how specialized can it be? Sure, you’ve got a few with bowling alleys or basketball courts (I’d hate to get stuck in the room under that one), but mostly you’ve just got one or more beds and bathrooms in there.

Just how specialized can you make a casino suite, anyway? I’m open to suggestions in the comments.

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