Nope, it’s not another bad chicken joke — or a Trump joke for that matter.
The real estate mogul won a quick $250 Tic-Tac-Toe match when he played the Apprentice Chicken Challenge during his brief visit Tuesday to Trump 29 Casino in Coachella.
Although managing the casino is a small portion of his business, Trump said “it’s still important to me.” His gaming company, the financially troubled Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts, earned a $2.7 million management fee in 2002 for running the Trump 29, according to the company’s latest annual report. The casino is owned by the Twentynine Palms Band of Mission Indians.
In the valley for a few hours, Trump spent about half an hour fielding questions about his visit, the hit TV show “The Apprentice” and his recent stint as host of “Saturday Night Live.”
He signed T-shirts and books and humored fans by spouting his catch phrase “you’re fired,” — the words he seeks to trademark.
A limousine brought Trump to the casino before he headed to Los Angles for a taping of “The Tonight Show” with Jay Leno.
But don’t look for any special announcements — like those made on the show by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger when he decided to run for office.
Trump won’t run for president.
“But it will be a big Thursday,” Trump said referring to the airing of “The Apprentice.”
“It will go down to two contestants,” he said. The winner gets a year-long gig heading one of Trump’s companies.
Asked if he saw a young Trump among the contenders, he said he was impressed. “There was some great talent, but I’m worth six billion, so they still have a ways to go,” Trump said.
He was accompanied by his girlfriend of five years, Melania Knauss.
Gamblers at the casino were happy that they were in the right place at the right time. Visiting from Denver, June Bakstrom got up close to take a picture of Trump with her digital camera.
“He looks so much younger in person,” she said. “I would have never thought he would be this personable, and his girlfriend is beautiful.”
Before Trump’s arrival, Luisa and Reuben Barajas of Cathedral City secured a spot next to the main entrance. They come to the casino nearly every day. “I can’t believe he’ll be here,” Luisa Barajas said. Her husband was hoping for a handshake.
They knew Trump was about to make his entrance when “The Apprentice” theme song, “For the Love of Money,” sounded over loudspeakers — “money, money, money, money… money.”