Saturday, December 24, 2005

Quads and Cold Decks Part 3

Shelly and I were finally "storming the castle" after getting sidetracked by hunger and hockey. I was seated at a new 2/4 table with a bunch of cowboys and a couple of locals when I looked down to see K 2 off. Normally I would only play this if it were soooted (yeah, right) but I was in the small blind and this was a passive table. Most of the table limped ahead of me and I decided to limp right along with them. The big blind checked and we awaited the flop.


It was Saturday, the day of the big WPBT event, and Shelly and I were ready for some poker. We had a reasonable amount of sleep, ate pastries for breakfast, and hit the conference room with time to spare. Bill and the IP did an excellent job on the room and I was impressed with how organized everything seemed. After a while the speakers started their thing and I searched the room for a spot where I could actually hear them. I had absolutely no luck and finally gave up. (This had nothing to do with the socializing in the background. That was expected and I can block that stuff out. I think the sound system just sucked.)

As we waited for the speakers to finish up my angry twin was carrying on about no one calling her to tell her that Phil Gordon was in the MGM poker room the previous evening. For the record (in case no one read the last installment) NO ONE TOLD ME EITHER!!!

Finally it was time to start the tournament and we drew our table assignments. My table (#6):

Seat 1: Mrs. HDouble (later Mr. Subliminal)
Seat 2: Mrs. HHead
Seat 3: Me
Seat 4: -EV
Seat 5: Guy who reminded me of "Jesus" whose blog I forget
Seat 6: Falstaff in his kilt
Seat 7: Drizz
Seat 8: Big Mike (later some guy named Steve)
Seat 9: Gracie
Seat 10: Franklin


Seven of us waited to see the flop. When it came down I saw that I have paired my 2. Oh boy, low pair, guess I'll be folding this hand now. But something amazing happened (not really, this table sucked), everyone checked around. Free card for everyone!


The WPBT Winter Classic was underway and I couldn't get a hand to save my life. I did get pocket Kings a couple of times buy only managed to take the blinds as everyone gave my pre-flop raise some respect. I think I also saw a flop and took down a small pot when my pair of 5's hit a set on the flop. Other than that, I didn't play a whole lot. At the first break I was up a little but not enough to keep me afloat much longer. I needed cards.


The dealer flipped up the turn card and it was another 2. I had a hand, thanks for the free card. Someone ahead of me bet and when the action got to me, I raised. Everyone else got out of the way and we waited for the river.


Break number one was over and the cards didn't get any better. I had a Queen with every possible kicker below an 8 on almost every hand. They weren't even soooted at any point that I can recall. Then it happened, the hand that would put me on tilt, make me cry like a little girl, and put me in a generally bad mood for the remainder of the tournament.

I didn't have a lot of chips left and I was in the need of a hand I could push with. I hadn't seen an Ace for about an hour and was really needing one. That's when the dealer dealt one, only he dealt it face up! What the fuck? I finally get a decent card and the fucking dealer, who was too busy chatting away to pay attention, deals it face up. He immediately grabbed the card, showed it to the table and gave me another. My Ace got replaced with a 4 and it didn't go well with the 10 I already had. I would have pushed and I would have won the hand had the dealer not screwed up. Instead I had to fold. To say I was upset would be an understatement.

To make things worse, I could tell I was getting upset over it and that made me more upset. Luckily it was almost time for the second break and I raced out of the room and headed to the Ladies room. I couldn't stop the tears and that made me feel worse. I was rescued by Gracie and Maudie who listened to me rant and helped me to calm down. Gracie bought me a drink and I headed back to the table wishing with every fiber of my being that the dealer would get hit with a bad case of food poisoning. I can only hope he caught the Avian Flu from patient zero.


We waited for what seemed like an eternity for the dealer to flip up the river card. When he finally did, I saw the case 2 staring back at me. My opponent bet and I raised. He looked at me and I stared at the board. He thought for a minute before folding and I flipped up my quads. The table erupted, well not really, but I can pretend, and I got ready for my first ever wheel spin.


The first hand after the break I actually had decent cards and I was going to push but Mrs. Head pushed first and I decided to fold. Bad play on my part as I would have won that hand but my head wasn't in the game at that point and I just didn't care.

A couple of hands later I looked down to find Ace 6 and decided those were as good as any. Steve pushed as well and the action came down to Drizz. He took his time thinking as Steve had more chips than I did and it wasn't an easy decision. Finally though Drizz called. I was up against Steve's 5 2 (I think) and Drizz's AQ. Crap, I needed a 6. Most of the table was calling for it, and I thank you all for the support, but it wasn't to be and Drizz knocked us both out of the tournament. It was time to hit the bar.

Try as I might, I couldn't get drunk. I had at least 5 drinks and barely felt a buzz. They weren't weak drinks either so I don't know what was going on. I hung out and cheered on Gracie, who went on to take 2nd place. It was fun to watch and I congratulate everyone who made it to the final table. It was a tough field and you all played great.


I got up and headed for the wheel. The TV table was right next to it and as I spun I could hear them all shouting out their colors. Honestly it was a bit surreal and I don't remember what color the wheel finally landed on. All I know is that I won $40 and it was the second time I had hit quads this trip. No way it would happen again....right?

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Quads and Cold Decks Part 2

It was late Friday night and I was in the MGM poker room once again. I must have been getting tired because I started to hallucinate. I mean, it had to be a hallucination because if Phil Gordon had been in the poker room at least one of the dozen or so bloggers present would have come over to my table to tell me he was there.....Right?


So, after getting quads on Thursday night, I proceeded to give my winnings back plus drop about half of my buy-in. I just couldn't connect with the board at all. It didn't help that I held on to my Aces even though I knew I was beat. I gave back a lot on that hand alone. When someone finally told me everyone was heading over to Excalibur, I was definitely ready for a change of scenery.

At this point my twin had made it to Vegas and we decided to eat with a couple of other bloggers before hitting the Excalibur poker tables. We got through the meal and hit the tables. I don't remember much of the play but I did leave up about $30 so it must have been a good table.

I finally got too tired to remember the color of my cards so I decided it was time to go. I headed back to the IP with a group that included Maudie and Gracie and hit the pillow at about 4am.


I got up from my table to talk to Shelly, surely if Phil Gordon had just walked by, she would have seen it. She informed me that she had not seen the man I was asking about and we came to the conclusion that I must have seen his doppleganger. Besides, if Phil Gordon were in the poker room, someone would have told me.....Right?


After a fitful night, or should I say morning, of sleep I got up to take a shower. I then wandered downstairs for a pastry at the cafe. I ran into Iggy who was just wandering in from the Excalibur. After a brief conversation that he later didn't remember, I went to get my food.

Soon I met up with Maudie, Gracie and Pablo for breakfast and then we hit the IP poker room for a bit before heading off to do "the gay thing". Here's one piece of advice, if you want to win at poker, don't sit down at a table with Pablo. He cracked my AK straight and my Aces within minutes of sitting down.


I went back to my table to ask Ohio Mike if he had seen Phil Gordon in the poker room. Forget that his back was turned toward the area where my hallucination had walked, he could have seen something. Mike said no and I finally admitted that I was hallucination because if Phil had been in the poker room someone would have told me....Right?


Finally it was time to do the "gay thing" and a bunch of us hopped on the monorail and hit the Las Vegas Hilton. Now, I've done the Klingon Experience before but I had yet to fight with the Borg so I was looking forward to that and we had tons of fun. The actors were great and came up with some great improve to deal with our uncontrollable laughter during the more "serious" moments of the experience.

When it was finally over we decided to meet up with everyone at the MGM for some food and mixed games. I decided to pass on the HORSE game as I actually wanted to make some money in Vegas. I ended up sitting at a 2/4 limit table where I was joined by Ohio Mike and some fun to talk to strangers. We were definitely having all the fun down at our end of the table. There was a Scottish guy who was raking in the chips. I couldn't decide if he was good or just damned lucky but he was fun to play with.

At some point Wil arrived and April dragged me over to meet him. He must have brought me some luck because, on the very next hand, I raked in a nice pot when my Aces held up. The deck went cold after that (a common theme for the weekend) and I was getting frustrated when a guy who looked just like Phil Gordon walked by. See, it had to be a hallucination because if Phil had really been there, someone......oh fuck it......Phil was there, dozens of you knew, and not one of you came over to my table to tell me. As my twin said in her write-up "You all suck!" ;) At least I left for the night up $9.

Coming up.....the tourny, more quads, change in plans, and my new rule.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Quads and Cold Decks Part 1

I had only been at the table for a few orbits when I looked down to see pocket queens. The table was all men of varying ages and skill. One older gentleman reminded me of Doyle Brunson as he was sitting in one of those motorized chairs that Doyle often uses to get around. I was pretty sure "Doyle" was a local as many of the dealers seemed to know him, but he had also just rebought and seemed a little loose with his starting hands. His chips became my target for this hand.


I had arrived in Vegas around noon that day and immediately called Joanne as she was going to pick me up at the airport. I got Bill's (Mr. Joanne) voicemail. I still had to pick up my suitcase so I wasn't worried. A few minutes later, with suitcase in hand, I dialed again. Same result, voicemail. I think I called at least one more time before I received a call back. Joanne had just gone to bed but was getting up and going to be at the airport within 20 minutes. She arrived, we hugged, I met Bill, and, just like that, I had met my first blogger, at least for this trip.


When the betting came around to me, I immediately raised. If I could get one person to fold their crap pre-flop, I was going to do it but this was limit and another $2 wasn't going to accomplish much. Six or seven saw the flop and when I realized I had hit my set, I was very happy. None of the other cards worried me and, when it was my turn to act, I raised again.

Once we got to the hotel, I went to check in. Unfortunately I was too early and they didn't have a room ready. I ran into Gracie and surprised her with my knowledge of her identity then made arrangements to leave my suitcase in Joanne's room. It was then decided that I would meet up with Maudie in the IP poker room and, once Joanne had a shower, we would all head for the champagne brunch.

As I walked into the poker room, I immediately spotted Maudie and some other bloggers whose names now escape me. I sat down next to Maudie and we chatted a bit. I also spoke with Gracie some more and chatted with some of the others at the table. Before too long it was time for me to go back down to the front desk to get my room key. They still didn't have my room ready but I glanced to my right and realized that Al and Eva were checking in. I could tell by the look on Al's face that something was wrong so I decided to postpone saying hi until he had some SoCo in him. I did, however, return to the poker room and announce his arrival to the other bloggers.


I think between the bet and my raise we might have gotten two people out of the pot. "Doyle" was not one of them and I hoped he had a piece of that flop. The turn brought an undercard and the betting came around to me. I raised and we were down to 3 people, including "Doyle".

We (me, Joanne, Bill, and Maudie) finally got to the champagne brunch and discovered they were in the process of switching to dinner. Since it was only a 20 minute wait we decided to stay and chat until we could get our food. We had just filled our plates when Eva and Lewey walked in and joined us. This was the beginning of the two fisted drinking portion of our dinner as Joanne and Eva tried to make the IP regret having free champagne, on tap, with the buffet.

We eventually ended up in the Al and Eva suite with a couple bottles of champagne and a water bottle filled with SoCo which had been graciously provided by Joanne and Bill. I think we may have set a new speed record for emptying those bottles as quickly as we did. It was at this point that I met John (aka Falstaff) and few others whose names, again, escape me. Once the booze started to get low it was decided to head out to the MGM for some poker and I headed toward my room to drop off my stuff. There was a slight room mix-up and I was a bit delayed at getting back to the suite. Luckily everyone waited for me and we headed to the monorail that would take us to the MGM where I would hit quads for the first time this trip.

To say that I was shocked to see the case queen on the river would be an understatement. I had just hit quads and I had to figure out how to get more money out of them. It was checked to me and I bet. The other guy folded but "Doyle" raised. He had hit something big and didn't believe I had the quads, at least not until I re-raised. He thought for a minute but decided to call. I think he knew he was beat but he had enough in the pot already to make calling the only choice. I flipped up my quads and the table seemed shocked. Yes, the girl can actually play poker, who would have thunk? "Doyle" flipped up his full house and mumbled "nice hand". I raked in the pot.

Coming up......Excalibur, doing the "gay thing", meeting Wil, my "hallucination", the tourny, more quads, change in plans, and my new rule.

Monday, December 12, 2005

I'm Back!

I survived Vegas! I was supposed to be back last night but came back this morning instead after about an hour of sleep. To say that I am exhausted would be an understatement. Yeah, the trip was great! I'll be back with a full report, once I catch up on my sleep.

Until then.....zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

I Go Vegas Now!

Well, actually in a few hours but the vacation officially starts now!!!

Trip reports start Monday or Tuesday.

Until then.....try not to miss me too much!

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Sometimes You Have To Give, To Get

San Jose Sharks fans across the Bay Area knew something was up when tonight's game started with no sign of players Brad Stuart, Marco Sturm, and Wayne Primeau in the line-up. Things became even more suspicious when we learned that they had been in the warm-up just minutes before. What the fuck was going on? To say the anticipation was killing me would be an understatement. My heart was beating through my chest and it wasn't time to take my heart pill.

See, the Sharks have not been playing well lately. As a matter of fact we have lost the last ten games. The local e-mail list has been clogged with trade rumors for the past week but we had no idea who would be going and what we would be getting in return. Everyone had their own opinion but not one was even close to the reality that was revealed, first on the internet, then on the game broadcast.

Tonight the Sharks made the biggest trade in their history when they traded Brad Stuart, Marco Sturm, and Wayne Primeau for the Boston Bruin's own Joe Thornton! JOE FUCKING THORNTON IS A SAN JOSE SHARK!!!!
Yeah, he's gonna look great in teal.

I'm sad to see Stuey, Sturm, and Primeau go, especially Stuart and Sturm as the only NHL team they have known is the Sharks. But players come and go, that's the nature of professional sports, and if I said the thought of having Joe Thornton on the team didn't thrill me, I'd be full of shit. His debut is Friday night and I, for one, can't wait.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Not So Much

I am a huge TV fan. I watch television every night and often have the VCR taping stuff as well. If I had to pick a favorite network I would go with CBS as they have my two favorite reality shows (Amazing Race, Survivor), my almost favorite drama (CSI), and my favorite comedy (2 and a Half Men). Because of this I was almost giddy when I found out they were going to venture into the world of Sci-Fi with a new show called Threshhold. Besides, it has Brent Spiner in the cast, how can it be bad? I tuned in to the first episode and immediately liked what I saw. Original ideas, great writing, the best acting I've seen in a while, and, in case you forgot, Brent Spiner, I was like a kid in a candy store.

My first clue that things weren't going well should have been when the show was put on a two week hiatus only to return on a different night. That's never a good sign, but I chose to ignore it, as I firmly believed CBS would give it a fair shot. Shows how stupid I am, they just cancelled it. I gave up being angry about this type of thing after ABC cancelled Cupid. It just isn't worth it, but I do like to send the network a letter informing them of my displeasure, even if there is no chance in hell of it making a difference. I just finished my e-mail to CBS but decided to re-iterate a few of my points here. Why have a blog if I can't use it to abuse a network every now and then? Those with no interest can stop reading now, otherwise, begin rant.

To those in charge at CBS,

I just want you to know how truly disappointed I am with your decision to cancel Threshold. It is an original show with a stellar cast that I don't think you ever really gave a chance. It's such a shame because I used to tell people that I thought CBS was the best network out there. Now, well, not so much.

Will I stop watching your network? No, I'm not that strong. But, I guarantee I will not be singing your praises anymore and, I will definitely think twice before watching a new show on your network.

See, I know my opinion isn't going to change your mind nor is the threat of me bad mouthing your network going to scare you, but my voice is all I have. I'm not one of those "lucky" individuals with a Nielsen box attached to their TV so this is the only way my vote actually gets counted, and it's a heck of a lot more accurate than the antiquated ratings system in place now.

I would like to thank you for showing me your true colors. CBS really is no better than any other network and only cares about the bottom line. Quality and originality isn't as important as being number one in every time slot. I get it. It makes me ill, but I get it.

No longer CBS's number one fan,

April H.

(I bit over the top, I know, but I've always had a flare for the dramatic.)

Saturday, November 26, 2005

A Promise Broken

I'm not supposed to be there anymore. I promised myself at the end of last year that I would not, under any circumstances, be working at the hospital come Thanksgiving of 2005. Yet, I'm still there.

See, some shit went down between Thanksgiving and Christmas of last year, shit that would have gotten a certain person fired had it happened anywhere else. Unfortunately, there are too many people who are scared of her so she still works there. Had I gotten an apology maybe I would feel less depressed about the whole situation but I never got anything resembling an "I'm sorry" so I'm really hating the job right now. I should have walked the day it all started but I'm a chicken shit with bills to pay and medications that won't pay for themselves. So, I'm still there.

The bright side is that I am involved in a new business venture and the future is looking great. It's just going to be a few more months before it turns into a full time gig but, it has actually turned out to be my dream job. I love it so much that I don't care when I spend most of my Saturday working, not to mention most nights during the week. I want this company to succeed because they recognize what I have to offer and have treated me with the utmost respect since the end of my first month (had to prove myself a bit in the beginning). I don't think I was ever treated this well at the hospital and I stopped caring after all the crap went down. I'm barely there, even when I'm there and, in case you haven't figured it out, I'm still there, four fucking days a week.

So, where does all this leave me? Most days, I hate that I'm still there, that I broke a promise I made to myelf but the person who should have been fired has been on medical leave since September so it hasn't been the worst thing in the world (barely). Of course she comes back December 5th. I would rather have a root canal with no Novacaine than walk into that department and see her face. Even the light at the end of the tunnel is offering me little in the way of peace. There is a slight chance her doctor won't let her come back just yet but I'm not holding my breath as he has already delayed her return by three weeks. I'd wish her a heart attack but even I am not that cruel and another one would probably kill her which could, possibly, make me feel bad (and this is all about me). Really, I'm not a mean person, I just feel like I'm trapped in a corner and I'm getting claustrophobic.

Truthfully, I'll just suck it up and plow on through. I'm not looking forward to it, but there really is no other option until my other job opens up. The one thing I can guarantee is that there will be no two weeks notice and no looking back. Once I get there, I won't have to be there.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005


I went to work today only to discover our hospital is restructuring and 55 people were losing their jobs. Unfortunately, I was NOT one of those people. Seriously, what do I have to do to get out of this job? I can't leave voluntarily because I need the benefits but I would have no objection to being "restructured". I realize I would still lose my benefits but I really don't want to be there anymore, I just can't bring myself to resign. The job itself doesn't bother me it's some of the people I work with that I really don't care to be around anymore. It's been almost a year since the department lead accused me of faking a back injury and I haven't felt any loyalty to the hospital ever since. (Yes, there is more to the story but I'm not getting into it.)

Speaking of restructuring, my tournament game could obviously use some. I did so poorly in both the Wil Wheaton and the Saturdays with Pauly tournaments that I couldn't stand to write about it. I just felt "off" in both tourneys and still haven't figured out why so I don't see the point in reliving my misery. I don't think I'll be playing in Wil's tournament this week because I have to work on Friday and I don't think I'll be home in time. I will be playing in Pauly's tourney on Saturday so I can continue to compete for last place honors.

One last thing, I HAVE BOUGHT MY PLANE TICKETS FOR VEGAS!!!!! If anyone is arriving in Vegas on December 8th at around 11:30am to noon and wants to share a cab ride to the Imperial Palace, drop me an e-mail at April9807 AT aol DOT com. I'm looking to save money in any way I can so if you can help me out I would appreciate it.

Until next time.....may the tournament tables treat you well!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Poker Observations

Hi all! No, I haven't died, I just haven't felt like blogging lately. Blame the second job, blame the first job, blame the fact that I watch a lot of TV in the evenings, blame the fact that it's hockey season and my Sharks aren't off to the best start, or you can just blame me for being one of the laziest people on the planet. Moving's some observations I've made over the past week or so. I may expand on one or two in a future blog post but for now I'm just throwing them out there.
  • Just because you can call an all-in doesn't mean you should. I don't know how many times I've watched some moron double up a short stack by calling with absolute crap.
  • On the other hand, if I'm in the blind for $800 and it's only going to cost me another $170 to call your all-in, I'll do it every time. I hope telling me I'm "a moron for calling" after I rivered you made you feel better because all it did for me (and Pauly) was cause lots of laughter. Oh, and you losing on the river was irony at it's finest.
  • However, I am a moron for not paying close attention during the Blogger Championship and calling a $7,000 all-in when I thought I was just calling a minimum raise. That was the beginning of the end.
  • Someday I hope to be healthy during a blogger tournament. Last Sunday was not that day, I'm shooting for perfect health in Vegas in December (or at least a good hangover).
  • Using the note feature to call bad players things like "fucking moron" and "total dipshit" can be therapeutic. Plus you can get a good laugh when you come across the player at a later date and read what you wrote.
  • The play at Poker Stars really is tighter than other sites. It took me going back to Full Tilt to fully realize how true that really is. I would now like to thank the players at Full Tilt for the Vegas bankroll they are going to provide me.
  • Continuation bets can be very profitable at a passive table.
  • No matter how many times I show down premium hands, there will always be one person at the table who will believe that I'm bluffing when I raise on every street. Thanks for making chip accumulation so easy!

That's it for now. I'm sure I'll think of some others as soon as I hit "publish" but I'll just have to use them in my next post.

Until next time......what's an observation you've made at the poker tables in the past week?

Friday, October 14, 2005

Diamond’s Really Are A Girl’s Best Friend!

I just finished 7th in the first WWdN: Where’s My Burrito? Invitational over on Poker Stars. That finish was good enough for a nice little profit but that wasn’t the best part of the tourney. The best part was when I got my


If you haven’t guessed from the title of this post, it was a diamond royal flush. I even managed to double up on it. I was just trying to bet enough to get a call so I could show it but I ended up all-in when the other player tried to bluff at the pot. Since I suck at screen shots, I offer the following hand history as proof:

*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to April98 [Ad Jd]
cfinnn: folds
Joanne1111: folds
Bugsy 99: raises 200 to 400
striker_dj: folds
Maudie: folds
AcesFull2221: calls 400
Beck2Knaves: folds
April98: calls 300
Decker711: calls 200
*** FLOP *** [Kh Qd Td]
April98: bets 400
Decker711: folds
Bugsy 99: folds
AcesFull2221: calls 400
*** TURN *** [Kh Qd Td] [Kd]
April98: bets 400
AcesFull2221: calls 400
*** RIVER *** [Kh Qd Td Kd] [4d]
April98: bets 800
AcesFull2221: raises 4568 to 5368 and is all-in
April98: calls 2815 and is all-in
*** SHOW DOWN ***
AcesFull2221: shows [Jc Qs] (two pair, Kings and Queens)
April98: shows [Ad Jd] (a Royal Flush)
April98 collected 10655 from pot
AcesFull2221 said, "nh"
DuggleBogey [observer] said, "holy crap!"
Beck2Knaves said, "holy ****"
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 10655 Rake 0
Seat 5: April98 (small blind) showed [Ad Jd] and won (10655) with a Royal Flush

Seriously, I thought I was toast at the start of the tourney when I found myself seated at a table with Joanne, Jaxia, and tournament host Wil. Later, I was seated with Joanne, Maudie, and Derek. I’m still not sure how I survived to the final table as, according to my stats, I only played 20 hands. I guess it was the quality of the hands not quantity.

Anyway, Wil plans to run a tourney every Friday, as his schedule allows, and I can guarantee that I’ll be playing in the future.

Until next time……Royal Flushes for everyone!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Pajama Bottoms And A Helmet Cam

Last night Maura and I made another stop on the April and Maura concert tour to see the men who proved that hell can indeed freeze over. That's right, the Eagles were in town and we had 3rd row, upper bowl seats, at the side of the stage. We were also in a relatively mellow section so I didn't get to experience any of my normal concert going pet peeves. No one was standing in front of us dancing or in back of us talking through the whole show and, best of all, no one was singing every song in a horribly out-of-tune voice. Seriously, if you want to do any of that, stay at home and pop a CD into the player and sing, dance, and talk till your heart's content. I paid money to hear the band, not you and your drunk ass friends.

For the next 3 and a half hours (minus the late start and the "we're getting old and need to rest" intermission) we heard beautiful harmonies and awesome guitar playing, as if they hadn't aged a day. For old men, they still have what it takes to put on one hell of a show. They started with some of their early hits, moved on to some solo stuff, took their break and came back to hit some of their ballads as well as a new song that seemed familiar though I've never heard it before. It wasn't too long before they started to rock and we got to hear a bit more of their solo work. Luckily Don Henley sang "Boys of Summer" before the break so the worst part of the show was over before things had really gotten started (no I don't like the Alien Ant Farm re-make either). The other good part was that Glen Frey stayed away from his "Miami Vice" days (again, not a fan of that song).

Finally we arrived at the first of 3 encores and I finally figured out why bands save their biggest hit for last, it's to reward those who stay until the very end. I just don't get people who pay fifty or more dollars for concert tickets only to leave before it's over. Those who left early last night missed "Hotel California" and "Desparado" as well as an awesome Joe Walsh spotlight moment when they performed "Rocky Mountain Way". Is getting out of the parking lot first really worth missing that?

One thing I was paying attention to as the show moved along was the crowd reaction when certain band members sang or had an instrumental solo. It was obvious that some people have a favorite Eagle and I must admit I fall into that group. Don't get me wrong, I love everyone in the band and I want to be listening to their music as I drift off on my death bed (a long, long time from now) but there is only one person who can make wearing pajama bottoms and a helmet cam on stage look cool. If you've ever seen the Eagles perform you'll know who I'm talking about and, if not, well there must be something seriously wrong with you.

For me the show rated a 100 on a scale of 1 to 10. If I had any money I'd see them again at their second show on Friday night but, instead, I'll settle for playing their CD in my car for the rest of the week (if I can actually find it).

Until next time.....tell me whose music you would want to have playing in the background as you take your
final breaths?

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Because My Twin Said So

Poker Championship

I have registered to play in the
Online Poker Blogger Championship!

This event is powered by PokerStars.

Registration code: 3690452

I can't say no to a free tournament especially if my twin is playing! If you have a blog, go sign up and join the fun!

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Random Sunday - It's All Gone


Every bit of money I deposited at Titan Poker is gone. It took me less than a week to lose it and I am leaving a nice amount of bonus dollars just sitting in my account going to waste. I will not be re-loading as I can't stand the software and since I can't seem to win there, I don't see the point. I should have known that I wouldn't win. Anytime anyone says the games are soft and anybody can win, I lose. I can't win at Party either.

Luckily, I still have money on Poker Stars and UB as well as some free money on various other sites. I think the new goal is to get my bankroll on Stars back to where I started and then consider moving my money somewhere else for a change of scenery. Maybe I'll go back to Full Tilt for a bit.

I did play the WPBT tourney on Tuesday night. I was knocked out by a bad beat in 30-something place. Same guy who knocked me out, took out Derek in an even worse beat. At least the chat room was fun.

Oh, I forgot to mention my 33rd place finish in the $5 Katrina charity tournament on Stars. I wasn't the longest lasting blogger but I had fun and it was nice to have a decent finish.

The Best Dog In The World

I really don't want to leave on a depressing note but I need to mention this because it fucking sucks. The day after my mom's birthday, and just a few days after her hospital stay, the best dog in the world got hit by a car. He was a gorgeous Rottweiler, Black Lab mix who was really just an overgrown puppy. My step-dad got him when he was a puppy to take on the road with him (he's a truck driver). He saved my step-dad's life on at least one occasion. Al was at a truck stop and a guy with a knife tried to rob him in the parking lot. The best dog in the world attacked the robber who ended up in jail, probably with a nice dog bite.

We'll never know why he chose that exact moment to run into the road. 2 seconds earlier or later and there may have been a different outcome but you can drive yourself crazy with those kind of thoughts. At least his death was instant and he didn't suffer. My step dad is blaming himself and my mom is really sad. It hit me when I realized that I couldn't hear him barking in the background while we talked on the phone. He was a good dog and he will be missed by many.

Until next time.....give your pet a great big hug.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

If You Can't Spot The Fish....

What a horrible fucking weekend at the poker tables. You name the fishy move and I probably made it at some point.

"I know I'm beat but I'll call your all-in anyway.".... I lost two buy-ins that night.

"Just because there are 3 spades (or any other suit) on the board, doesn't mean he has the flush."....uh, yes he does, every fucking time.

"I'm working off a bonus so I'll loosen up my starting hand requirements." I can lose my deposit twice as fast.

"Although I'm losing at this level, all I really need to do is change tables and I'll start winning.", you need to move down a level or two you fucking moron!

I'm sure I could keep going but you get the idea. I think my brain finally started to function about the last half hour I played and I was able to win a little of my money back but it didn't make me feel any better.

I'm just so pissed off at myself right now because I knew I was playing bad poker and yet I kept right on playing like an Emu (or whatever the hell the new term for donkey is).

Anyway, I haven't signed up for the next WPBT tournament yet but I will tomorrow. First person to identify me (I couldn't use any of my normal nicknames) gets absolutely nothing but the knowledge that they were the first to figure it out.

See you all on Tuesday night and if your lucky I'll still be playing like an idiot.

The details (as stolen from Tao of Poker):

What: WPBT Tournament
Where: Titan Poker
When: Tuesday, September 20th at 9pm ET
Buy-in: $20 + 1
Format: No Limit
Dress Code: Pants are optional
Password: thehamma

Monday, September 12, 2005

Not The Post I Intended To Write

I'm actually not sure if I had intended to write anything today but if I had, I don't remember what I was going to write about. See, I just got one of those heart-stopping phone calls. I checked my voicemail and there was a message from my step-father, Al, "You're mom is in the hospital." That was when my heart stopped.

I immediately called him back only to get a busy signal. "Get off the fucking phone!" I said aloud to an empty room. Finally, after about 5 minutes, I got through. He told me that she had been having chest pain for about 3 weeks and today it got so bad that she went to the employee health clinic at her work. They called an ambulance.

The good news it that it wasn't a heart attack. Her EKG and blood work was normal but they are keeping her overnight and won't let her go home tomorrow until she has a Stress Test. I talked to my mom and she sounds like she is doing fine. The idea of being on medication for the rest of her life is unappealing to her but I know she'll do whatever the doctor tells her to do. If she doesn't, I'll be on the next plane to Bangor to give her a swift kick in the ass.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Next WPBT Las Vegas Event

Per Bill's blog:

"Well it looks like things have started to move forward and here’s what we have so far:

Date: Dec 10th, 2005
Place: Imperial Palace Casino
Time: Shooting for around 10am’ish

Despite having some reservations regarding the Harrah’s buyout of the IP, the poker room manager has done a good job at convincing me that they are committed to pulling this off for us.

Blind structure is being worked out but they have been open to structuring things as we would like them. Buy in would be $50 + $5 (dealer bonus) + $10 (juice) or $50 + $15 for those who are mathematically challenged.

I’ve spoken with the manager of guest relations at the IP and he said the normal room rates for $49/$69 (weekday/weekend) but he’s pretty confident he can get us a rate of $29/$39. We’re still working on that and I’ll post more about it as the info becomes available. In the meantime, if you would like to book at the IP, pop me (Bill) an email with your name, email, dates you plan on staying, phone number, and preference of smoking/non-smoking and I’ll start getting that over to Bob. If we can batch up all of the requests, Bob will have player club cards waiting for you at check-in as well.

As far as associated events, pros, etc., we’re still putting that together. We might have a sponsorship for the event so perhaps we’ll have some goodies to give away. "

Sunday, September 04, 2005

"I have an annoucement to make!"

Those were the words declared by my step-brother about 2 weeks ago. He is stationed in San Diego (Navy) and had brought his girlfriend with him to visit us for the week. We (step-mom, my dad, and I) were all in the kitchen making dinner when he felt it was time to make a big announcement. I was thinking maybe another promotion or he was transferring to another base, I don't think any of us were prepared for his next words.

"My wife is pregnant!"

Those were his exact words and the room fell silent for about two seconds and then his mother asked, "are you joking with me?"

This was when I went into smart ass mode and replied, "well that ring on his finger looks a lot like a wedding band to me!"

From there it went into congratulations and all the questions that follow that type of announcement. I'll sum the answers up for you:

"3 weeks ago"
"no one was invited"
"15 weeks along"
"we're really happy"
"Tyler Patrick if it's a boy and Alexandria Nicole if it's a girl"

Yes, they have all ready picked out names. I'm actually happy for him but I'm wondering if the Navy is slipping a bit. I thought sailors who had been to countries like Thailand had some sort of mandatory sex education class at some point. Must have slipped his mind or he was really drunk. He probably just slipped back into irresponsible mode as men are prone to do from time-to-time.

Of course, he has a very secure job with free health care as well as a car and a condo. He's doing much better than the rest of us. I guess what I have the biggest problem understanding is what she sees in him. Don't get me wrong, he's my favorite step-sibling and, although not the smartest bulb in high school, managed to work his way up from potato peeler to Master Helmsman of an aircraft carrier. He's just always seemed so socially immature that I figured it would be awhile before he got married. I'm not sure of the maturity exchange rate but she just turned 20 and he's 26, does that make them even?

Oh, one more interesting tidbit, her name is Esther which happens to be my mom's name. I bet my dad thought he'd never have to say that name again.

Lastly, for those looking for a gambling reference, I put the over/under at 4 years.

Until next time.....Just call me Auntie April (only if you want me to kill you instantly).

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Quick Update

Poker is really, really sucking right now.

I am way, way behind on my blog reading so don't be surprised if you get a new comment on a week-old post.

Punkin is back to her old self but tried to milk it a bit yesterday. I caught her playing with her favorite toy mouse so I knew she was fine.

I have never been to New Orleans so I don't have a story to share. I did watch the entire season of Real World New Orleans and thought it would be a cool place to visit, looks like that won't be happening for awhile. My heart is with everyone from who has been devastated by this disaster. Poker Stars and Wil Wheaton have planned some charity tournaments to help in the recovery of those areas hit hardest. If you have been waiting for a good excuse to start playing online poker, this is the best time. Click Tournaments and then the Special tab for more details.

Now I must go to bed so I can be half awake for work.

Monday, August 29, 2005

I'm A Bad Mom

There are three cats in my household. Ricci and Punkin are mine, and Tye-Dye belongs to my dad. When the flea population rises it becomes my job to put flea killer drops on their necks. Even though it's expensive I have always used Advantage which I buy it at my veterinarians office. It averages about $10 per tube and comes in a package of 6 tubes. Because the two boys weigh over 9 pounds and Punkin is around 7 pounds, I have to buy two different packages for a total of $120. Last Friday it was time to apply the liquid to all the cats. I had enough tubes for the boy's but I was totally out of the one for Punkin. Since I didn't really have the money to buy it from the vet, I went to the local Wal-Mart to see what they had as an alternative. After perusing the choices, I decided on Hartz 4 in 1 Flea and Tick Drops Plus for the bargain price of $8 for 3 tubes.

It was pretty obvious about 2 hours after applying the liquid that something was wrong. Punkin was drooling and her head was twitching a bit. Later I caught her scratching the area with her back legs and as she walked she would shake her legs as if they were wet and she was trying to dry them. I immediately tried washing the stuff off and eventually had to take some shampoo to the area. I did the best I could but whatever that substance is it's hard to get off. For the rest of the weekend my baby was obviously not herself. She was lethargic and would only leave the bedroom if I carried her out. This is another sign that something was wrong as she hates being held. I also don't think she was eating or drinking much but since I couldn't watch her every second, I didn't know for sure.

Last night I decided to do some research and found a very troubling web-site. It's called and is dedicated to getting all these crappy Hartz products off of the shelves. If you check out the site you will find hundreds if not thousands of stories of animals who have gotten extremely sick and even died after the use of these products. And don't think dog's are immune because they aren't. I also read a couple of horrific dog stories as well. I will be fair and point out that not every animal has had a negative reaction to these products but I also feel that the numbers that have should not be ignored.

As for Punkin, she seems to be doing better although she still isn't at her best. She has been eating, drinking water, and purred for a good ten minutes this morning. She even managed to hiss at Ricci but she is still a little twitchy and not her normal, active self. After speaking with the assistant at my veterinarians office I decided not to take her in as there probably isn't much that can be done at this point and she gets way to stressed when put in a carrier. I just don't think that added stress would be good for her. At this point, I just have to wait it out. From what I read it could be a couple of weeks before she is back to her normal so I'm sure she will be back to her regular princess duties soon.

I wrote this as a warning for all my pet owning readers. I put my trust in a product based on the limited information I had at the time. Had I known then what I know now, I would never taken the cheap way out. My veterinarians office said that they have no way of getting information out to the public as to how bad Hartz products are. Luckily for me, I have a blog and I'm not afraid to use it to get this information out. Please check out the web-site and share this information with as many people as possible. No one should have to go through what I went through this weekend.

UPDATE: I just found a link on the Hartz victims site to the EPA web-site. Apparently the company recently changed the labels to add warnings, plan on stopping production of this product by the end of September, and stop selling it, at least temporarily, at the end of the year. I just want to state that I followed the instructions and read the warnings but felt Punkin would be okay as she met all the requirements on the label. Obviously I was wrong and I personally feel this stuff should be off the shelves now, not at the end of the year.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

I Need Some Help

I need the assistance from the blog experts out there. I need to add a banner to my site but I need to figure out how to host it and the HTML code to add it to my template. This is not an affiliate or money making banner. Basically I need someone to tell me what to do in simple, step-by-step instructions. Please e-mail me ASAP if you can help. Once I get this taken care of I will edit this post to explain the situation and the purpose of the banneer.

UPDATE: I've decided not to put up the banner. I will be back later today with a new post explaining what the hell is going on. Thanks.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Blogger Tourney Madness

Last night the 45 player, $1 SNG on Poker Stars didn't know what hit it when five poker bloggers decided to have a little fun with the fishies. The line-up:

Everyone's favorite Austin blogger and my twin.....April (Currently no blog to link)

Everyone's favorite Canadian blogger.......Joanne

Everyone's favorite dead tired blogger......Drizz

Everyone's favorite pathetic poker blogger......Gamecock

The game started out great, as we were seated and I found no other bloggers at my table. My game plan was to play super tight and let the idiots knock each other out but I found myself with a monster on the second hand of the tournament. I was in the small blind and several players ahead of me decided to limp in. I figured adding 10 more chips wouldn't hurt much so I went ahead and limped with my monster...... A 4 offsuit. I thought I'd end up folding after the flop but the poker gods were shining down on me as the flop came 3 5 2 giving me the wheel. My next step was figuring out how to get some more money out of the hand. I had forgotten that $1 tourneys are really just a giant aquarium.

As first to act I went with a small bet of T60 and found 2 callers. Turn came a K and I fired out T120 and was down to one caller. River is a Q and the flopped flush draw doesn't complete so I know I've got the stone cold nuts. I didn't think my opponent would call so I only bet T200. He raised me all-in and I, of course, called figuring he had a pair. Cards are flipped and it turns out he went all-in with Ace high, he wasn't even on a draw. With that hand I had taken the chip lead and knocked the first player out of the game.

After that it was standard poker with an occasional bluff. The first blogger casualty was Joanne. I didn't see the hand but she evidently was on the wrong end of a bad suckout. We had a chat room going and I realized I was missing some good stuff by not having Gamecock's table open. I remedied that and couldn't believe what I was seeing. No matter what he did he was getting called all the way to the river. He had the chip lead for quite a while but eventually he became the next blogger victim. I'm pretty sure he didn't care as he was having a lot of fun trying to rile up his opponents.

In the meantime I had been moved to my twin's table and later, Drizz ended up there as well. Three bloggers at the same table, time to get serious.

Unfortunately, Drizz was playing in his sleep and didn't last much longer so it was up to the twin's to bring home the victory. I don't remember the exact sequence of events but we both ended up doubling up with pocket 7's and we decided that from here on out pocket 7's are the official hand of the WPBT Twins. Not only did we win with that hand but I took out a player who dared play it against me.

At this point we had both made the money and Joanne was continuing the encouragement. Austin finally went out in fourth place and I found myself shortstacked with one guy having about 70% of the chips. I knew winning was going to be close to impossible so I set my sights on second. I actually made it to heads-up play but was severely out chipped. I fought for a few hands but finally decided that the extra $4 for first wasn't worth it.

I had a great time and want to thank everyone for coming out to play, especially Joanne and April for sticking with me until the end.

Until next time.....

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

The End Of The World!

Those who know me know that I am a hockey fan. Those who know me well know that Mike Ricci is my favorite hockey player (I actually named one of my cats Ricci). When I first started watching hockey he was playing for Colorado and was the only player on the ice I could pick out of the mass of players out on the ice because of his long hair falling well below his helmet. He was the reason I continued to watch and I was thrilled when he left Colorado to become a Shark. Unfortunately he is now on the Phoenix Coyotes but I still look forward to seeing him play when his team is in town.

So, you are probably wondering what this has to do with the end of the world. I'll tell you in one simple five word sentence: MIKE RICCI CUT HIS HAIR!!!! I'm pretty sure this is a sign of the apocalypse.

First person to direct me to a picture of Mr. Ricci with his new look will get a special mention in my next post (I know, you can barely contain yourself).

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Here We Go Again!

It looks as though some poker bloggers have made their reservations in Vegas for the next WPBT get together on the weekend of December 15th. I'll tell you right now that I will be there, I just have to rob a bank first. Even though I went through a lot at the June event, I had a good time, and saw the potential for a better time if I had actually been alive for the Saturday events. This time I plan to be healthy.

That being said, I realized last night while doing preliminary trip pricing, that the travel industry likes to screw the single traveler. Vacation packages are about the same price for one person as they are for two people. Tell me how that makes sense! Basically, I am being punished for traveling alone. So, I then went on to price airfare and hotel separately. I discovered that hotels charge five to ten dollars less a night if you say there will be at least two people in the room. If I claimed two people were sleeping in the room how would the hotel know that I wasn't telling the truth? I would think that all I would have to do is say my friend is flying in later. If anyone can see a flaw in this logic, please let me know.

I would also like to state that I have no problem sharing a room so if you are also planning to travel alone and would like to split that cost, let me know. I am looking at staying at the Sahara or Imperial Palace but will consider other accommodations if the price is right. Leave me a comment or e-mail me at
April9807 AT aol DOT com if you are interested.

Until next time.......(still got nothing).

Wednesday, August 17, 2005


It's been over a month since my surgery and I figured I was in the clear as far as post surgery complications go but, as anyone who reads this blog knows, I'm an idiot! Over the weekend one of my incision sites started to give me problems and yesterday I had to visit the surgeon for a little procedure. I won't go into the gory details but I will say that the next time anyone tries to stick a needle into my abdomen, I'm kicking them in the junk and getting the hell out of there.

There was some good news this week as my co-worker/boss (depending on who you ask) had surgery and will probably be out for at least three months. It isn't anything life threatening and we knew it was coming but it's going to take me a couple weeks to get used to the peace and quiet that comes with her being out. I considered throwing a party to celebrate her departure but figured she'd kick my ass and have me fired. Unfortunately I need the benefits so I have to behave myself.

As for poker, I won another SNG the other night and had a second place finish the next night. In the first one I made a couple of early mistakes and was down to a chip and a chair when my patient side kicked in. I waited for good cards and managed to go into the final three with a decent chip lead. After a few hands of heads-up, it was all over and I went to bed a happy person. The second place finish was a similar come from behind game, except the other player had a huge chip lead going into heads-up.

It was a good thing I won some money in the SNG's because the ring games have been horrible for me lately. I take full responsibility for the losses but it really has sucked. I've been playing like an idiot and have deserved every loss I have encountered. Hopefully, by admitting to my stupidity, I can begin to turn my game around. No more chasing, no more playing marginal crap, NO MORE FISHY PLAY!! Something tells me that's a little easier said than done.

One last thing, to all those going to Brad-o-ween this weekend, have fun (although I think that is a given). More importantly, take lots and lots of pictures so I can spend a few minutes living vicariously.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Just Call Me Lucky!

I had just won a $12 pot at the .25 table when I decided to enter the $3 tourney on Stars. I was hanging out in the Big Brother 6 chat room and needed something to do as I kept track of the HOH competition (heading into it's 6th hour if anyone cares). I really didn't think I would last long as my tournament game is sucking lately.

I actually did fairly well in the early part of the tourney, at one point I was in 20th place. The few times I went to showdown I actually won, even with the Hilton's (Queen's). Then I made my stupid move of the evening and lost a good portion of my stack. Basically, from that point on I was short-stacked.

After the second break, and with the bubble approaching, I managed to win enough chips to keep me alive but not comfortable. It was a struggle, but I made the money (top 135).

After the third break my only moves were fold or all-in, and this is where the luck really kicked in. I would get down to barely a big blind and finally get a decent hand. I would go all-in pre-flop and get anywhere from 1 to 3 callers. My hand would not necessarily be the best, but I would ultimately win. I think I did this about ten times, winning just enough to make it to the next rung on the payment ladder. Towards the end I had to go all-in at least once every orbit just to cover the blinds. It was crazy! My luck finally came to an end when I was forced all in with Q 6 off. I actually flopped a 6 and the turn was a Queen but I ended up being beaten by a better 2 pair, K 9. I was so close to the next payout but my luck had run out.

Of course 20th place out of 1398 isn't bad, even if I only made $16.

Here's my stats for those interested. Probably a little too tight but I'm still okay with the result.

During current Hold'em session you were dealt 285 hands and saw flop:
- 17 out of 35 times while in big blind (48%)
- 6 out of 34 times while in small blind (17%)
- 16 out of 216 times in other positions (7%)
- a total of 39 out of 285 (13%)
Pots won at showdown - 17 of 19 (89%) - only lost the hand I went stupid on and the final hand.
Pots won without showdown - 6

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Dumbass Idea

I just unregistered from a SNG on UB after sitting in the waiting room for almost 30 minutes. How ridiculous is that? I thought the point was to sit and, once the table is full, play some poker? Instead, Ultimate Bet "improved" the system by having you sign-up and put your name on a wait list for some undetermined amount of time. It's stupid and the dumbass who thought this up should be fired or, at the very least, smacked up-side the head. Is there something I am missing here because I just don't see how this new format makes any sense? Anyone?

Anyway, in honor of this "new improved" format I am suggesting a new name. How about we start calling them the "sit-and-wait" tournaments? I think it's kind of catchy. Who's with me?

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Post Deleted

I had posted a fun quiz result from a link on Maigrey's site. The HTML came out looking like crap so I erased it.

Sorry, but I suck at fixing HTML!

Sunday, August 07, 2005

2 Down, 47 To Go

I have just finished my first week of my new diet and I am celebrating my 2 pound loss. If I lose 47 more I'll be back to my high school weight, which is my dream goal but probably not the most attainable goal. I'll definitely settle for 35. Last time I tried this I lost 11 pounds before I gave up, this time I will not fail. I actually feel motivated and have yet to feel as if I am missing out on something. As far as food is concerned, I have tweaked my intake by adding more fruit and removing most sweets. I am making better choices at work and did not deny myself cake when we celebrated a co-workers birthday. I feel no guilt over that choice and probably would have felt worse if I hadn't had the cake. Besides, other than sweets, my diet isn't the real problem.

The real problem is that I never get up off the couch. The only exercise in my life is the walking I do around the hospital as I go to different departments to do EKG's. Most days there isn't a lot of movement and I've discovered that I get winded while getting dressed every morning. Add to that my increased blood pressure and heart rate and it becomes obvious that I needed to make the change. I have done some form of exercise almost every day this week and I am already feeling better. We have a treadmill and cable machine in the house so I don't even have to go to a gym (I hate being around other people while I exercise). The best part is that I can set my laptop on the treadmill and catch up on my blog reading while I walk (not that I'll ever catch up since you all write so damn much). ;)

Poker Content

I finally won a SNG yesterday on UB. When we got 4-handed I had to fold for awhile. There was one player who was sitting out and I wasn't about to go out before him. Once he was blinded out I started to get some cards but we were just exchanging chips for what seemed like ages. Finally the guy across from me was knocked out and I was heads up with a slight disadvantage. Again, we exchanged chips for a bit and at one point I was down to 800 but had the other guy's number and started to build back up. I finally got the chip lead and then crippled him with a hand I don't remember. The last hand I knew he was going all-in (I don't think he could cover the blind but I'm not sure) and I made up my mind to call no matter what. When I saw my cards I knew he was done as I had been dealt The Hammer! A 2 came on the flop but he had paired his Q. I tried not to worry and when the 7 came on the river it was all over. The hammer brought me my first SNG victory since June 11.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

A Long Night That I'll Never Get Back

I am finally finished with my summer class, Medical Law and Ethics. This week we had to do a five minute presentation about a bioethical issue and if I never hear another word about stem cells, euthanasia, and right to die, it will be too soon. For some insane reason we voted last week to do all of the presentations in one night and I thought it was never going to end. Luckily I have mastered the art of looking like I am paying attention while my mind is actually wandering off to a world where I am married to Michael Easton and I play poker professionally.

I ended up doing my presentation about 2/3 of the way in, which was about the time most of the class was fidgity and obviously very bored. I knew that was about to change because I actually picked something interesting to do my report on. My topic was face transplants! From the moment I started I could tell the class was with me. I didn't hear anyone talking, no one got up for a "bathroom break", and every time I looked up their eyes were on me. It was pretty cool. Unfortunately we dove back down into the depths of boredom once I was finished.

So this means I am about one quarter away from being finished with school and I can't wait for this to end!

Sunday, July 31, 2005

Sorry Everyone!

I realize I haven't posted in over a week but I promise to remedy that very soon. As a matter of fact, my schedule opens up a bit after Tuesday night. I have a paper to turn in, a 5 minute presentation to give and then I will be finished with my summer class. I still have one on Saturday morning but it's more of a pain in the ass to get up that early than to actually work on homework. In other words, I could pass it with my eyes closed (and they usually are).

As for poker, I have been playing (I can't seem to stop for too long) but I have shortened the length of my limit sessions. I was finding that sitting longer wasn't really increasing my bankroll and, most of the time, I was giving a lot of my winnings back. Basically, I am learning "when to walk away". My SNG game still sucks. I had two bubble finishes and a last place finish over the weekend. I was doing well at SNG's before Vegas but I seem to have lost something since I returned and I still haven't figured out what. I've also played a few tourney's but I have no major cashes to report. Mostly I am just working on building the bankroll.

Speaking of which, I now have money at Party. A couple of weeks ago they gave me some "we miss you" bonus money and I haven't lost it all yet. I actually had it up to almost $50 at one point but I forgot to walk away while I was up. Anyway, I'm building it up again so we'll see how long it lasts. I also still have money at Stars and UB so those are the places you will likely find me playing if you ever go looking. (April98 is my name on all three.)

That's it for now and until next time...........(did you really think I suddenly figured out how to end a post?)

Thursday, July 21, 2005

If It Weren't For Luck

I just finished 19th in the $2000 guaranteed, $10 buy-in tournament on Ultimate Bet.

Basically I was bored with limit play over on Poker Stars, they didn't have any interesting tournaments starting up, and I am on a break from SNG's so I headed over to UB to see how quick I could lose the last $14 I had left in my account. It was nearing the start time for the $2000 guarantee and, even though it was more than I usually buy-in for, I said "fuck-it" and signed up. There ended up being 241 entries and the top 30 payed. Oh, and it was a turbo tournament. Nothing says "take my money quickly" like the all-in crapfest that is a turbo tourney.

My first table was fairly tight-passive. I won a few small pots and managed to get just above the average when I got moved to table that was a little more interesting. Unfortunately my cards sucked. Finally I got a pair of 8's and made a good sized raise. The guy across the table from me called and I got annoyed. On an earlier hand he got me to lay down AQ by going all in after a flop that I had missed completely. I felt he was on a steal but I wasn't ready to find out. Anyway, back to the pair of eights. The flop came something like 2 4 5 and I knew that I liked it. The other guy was first to act and pulled his all-in trick again. All my B.S. alarms started going off and I called. He had AQ and didn't improve. He was out but turned out to be a good sport and complemented me on the call.

At this point, I was sure I had enough to make the money, even with the fast rising blinds but I hate just sneaking in like that. Fortunately, the cards made the decision for me as I didn't get anything worth playing. I was moved again and this time, with 2 of the 3 chip leaders at my table, I decided to wait for a premium hand. I made it to the break with 11 to go before the money but, since I was on the button I could afford to wait at least an orbit before I had to start worrying. The action finally got back around to me and it looked like I was going to bubble. That's when the luck really kicked in.

I was in the SB when I was dealt the evil AK. Since I couldn't even complete the BB, I once again said fuck-it and went all-in. A full boat and a couple hands later, I found myself in the money. Now it was time to get serious. All-in or fold were my only options if I wanted to compete with the big stacks. That's when I got a pair of 7's in mid to early position. I put all my chips on the line and had 2 callers. Flop comes and there, staring back at me, is a third 7. I'm feeling good but one of the other guys has Q's and I think there was a flush draw. The next two cards came quick but I remember the flash of the 4th 7 on the river. The four of a kind gave me about 15,000 in chips and I was confident I could get to the next payout level.

Sure enough, a few hands later we were down to two tables. Again, I was going to wait for a decent hand and push. That's when it happened. I looked at the screen and saw two beautiful Aces. One red, one black. I bet out 5k and it was folded to the guy across from me. He went all-in and, without hesitation, I called. He had 8's and I was feeling good. I could actually see the final table on the horizon but luck always finds a way to turn and bite me in the ass and this hand was no exception.

The flop was harmless but the turn brought the ugliest 8 I've ever seen. I received no help on the river and I was out in 19th with a profit of $7. For a moment I was in shock (because we all know that aces always win) but I remembered that I had entered the tournament with no real expectations so I had absolutely nothing to complain about. If I repeat that to myself a couple more times, maybe I'll actually start to believe it.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Bad Timing

I can't believe my computer decided to shut off three minutes before the start of the Charlie tournament. I was ready to kick ass and, instead, ended up going out early because my brain decided to go on vacation. Having to re-boot the computer twice just threw off my focus. I would look at my hand and have no idea how to play it. It was like I had just sat down at the table for the first time ever without any clue of how to play. Oh well, it was for a good cause and I was able to railbird Joanne and Shelly after I got knocked out. Of course I also had the "celebrity table" open the whole time. That lucky Shelly actually got to play there for awhile! Maudie ended up taking Shelly out with what I would call the play of the tournament but I'll let them tell that tale.

Right before my computer shut off, Jason was talking about hockey and I was in the middle of my reply when the damn thing rebelled. I am excited that hockey will be back. I'm not mad at anyone anymore and I just hope the NHL can recover after a year of no play. The only bad part is that I can't afford to keep my season tickets. It's just not possible. I have switched to what is called Shark-Pak which is a 10-game package with some of the benefits of season tickets including priority for playoff tickets. As my dad reminded me, all the games will be on TV and I should have no problem getting tickets for any other game I may want to go to. It still kind of sucks though.

Actually what really sucks is that I have to go back to work tomorrow. I've been enjoying my time off even if it was for surgery recovery. I like my job but I am sick of one of my co-workers and I am not looking forward to seeing her again. The only thing making it better is that I have a job waiting for me with a very new business that my dad is involved in. Once they get the necessary capital and can start paying people I will be leaving the hospital and working from home (or Vegas, or anywhere I can hook up my computer). I can't say much more right now, but wish them luck as I think it will be a very profitable venture.

That's it for today. Thanks to everyone who planned the Charlie tourny and to those who donated. 144 people at $20 each equals a nice gift for the charity. May the poker gods shine down on you all!

Friday, July 15, 2005

"The Mouth" Is Out And I Am Sad

If you were waiting for the broadcast on ESPN in October, I'm not sorry for ruining it for you. It's the fucking WSOP main event and no real poker fan or player is going to wait to see the edited version on TV, besides, how can you not be reloading Pauly's site every five minutes for updates.

So, I will admit, I have been rooting for Mike Matusow for most of the tournament and that is after seeing his behavior on TV last year and without knowing the details of his arrest shortly thereafter. I've been reading on blogs all week about how he shouldn't win and how it would be bad for poker and all I have to say is that is a lot of bullshit. Who cares if a few more jackasses start mouthing off at the tables, most of them will still be making donkey moves and will eventually be giving away all their chips to the better, quieter players at the table. The difference between these loud mouths and Mike, is that Mike actually knows how to play the game. The last hand was played perfectly and Mike should have won. He got unlucky but he kept his cool when he had every right to go off on a meltdown. He was very calm on the Cardplayer audio broadcast almost immediately after and said he would be sleeping well tonight because he played his best game ever this past week. Doesn't sound like words that someone who is "bad for poker" would say, at least not to me.

Does he rub people the wrong way? Sure, but he's not the only one, he just happens to get the most press. Speaking of which, if he's so "bad for poker", why was he at the featured table so much and why did he seem to be the most quoted player on every update web-site? Because we need a villain, someone to dislike and I'm sure there will be a few morons who will try to emulate Mike's style but I doubt that behavior will be tolerated to the extent that Mike's is. I think the nickname gets you a bit more leeway.

Personally, I'm sorry he's gone because I like me a good villain and Mike "The Mouth" Matusow plays a great one.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

I'm Such An Idiot!

I knew I was going to forget that Full Tilt is having a live poker tournament on Fox Sports tonight. Luckily Phil is still in but I still feel like an idiot for forgetting. I have no doubt that Fox will re-run it to death but I wanted to see it from beginning to end while it was LIVE. I guess all I missed was one player being knocked out. If you're not watching, turn the channel now!

Also, if you haven't signed up for the charity tournament yet, what are you waiting for? Yes, I realize I haven't signed up yet but I have a good excuse. I need to win about $10 and I will have enough in my account to play and continue building the bankroll. I should be able to accomplish that tonight so expect to see my name on the list very soon.

Necessary Information:
July 17th 3 p.m. PST
Buy-in of $20, all goes to charity
Look under private tab for WPBT "Charlie" Tournament

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

WPBT Tournament For Charlie

Join the WPBT for a tournament in honor of Charlie. All proceeds will go to a charity chosen by Charlie's family.

Necessary Information:

July 17th 3 p.m. PST
Buy-in of $20, all goes to charity
Look under private tab for WPBT "Charlie" Tournament

Monday, July 11, 2005

Some Shameless Promotion

ESPN Original Entertainment’s 2004 World Series of Poker Now Available on DVD

NEW YORK (June 28, 2005) — The poker phenomenon is still raging and so is its highest stakes game, No-Limit Texas Hold’Em. To the delight of poker fans nationwide, ESPN Original Entertainment and DVD Marketing Inc. have compiled the complete 2004 World Series of Poker’s Main Event, a six-day shoot-out between the crème de la crème of the poker world and wildcard amateurs to capture the multi-million dollar cash prize, onto an ultimate must-have three-disc DVD set.The DVD set, packed with bonus features and more than 11 hours of poker action, will be available for online purchase as of today at and with a suggested retail price of $19.95. Availability in retail outlets will follow.

“Our fans will really enjoy the 2004 WSOP DVD collection because we’ve loaded it with four hours of bonus content,” said Victoria Stevens, vice president, ESPN. “It’s great for people who enjoy poker and dream of someday making it to the final table at the game’s biggest stage.”

A record-breaking 2,576 players, more than triple the number from last year, came to Las Vegas for the 2004 World Series of Poker. Once again, it was a virtual unknown in the poker world that would beat the poker masters and garner the top prize. Greg “Fossilman” Raymer, a patent attorney from Connecticut, parlayed a $160 online entry fee into $5 million in winnings and the coveted WSOP title.

This DVD set contains ESPN Original Entertainment’s final 10 programs from the telecast of the 2004 World Series of Poker, which earned a 1.7 rating for more than 1.5 million viewing households. Hosted by ESPN commentators and poker aficionados, Lon McEachern and Norman Chad, the DVD is presented in fullscreen (1.33:1) digital video without commercial interruption, and includes revealing interviews of star players, basic rules of No-Limit Texas Hold’Em and four hours of bonus features. Chapter points set at the key rounds allow the viewer to jump directly to the action putting them in control of every frame of video as ESPN captures the emotion, strategy and luck in route to crowning the champion of the World Series of Poker.

The unprecedented four hours of bonus features include:
* Top-10 moments from the 2004 tournament
* A Greg Raymer commentary
* A Greg Raymer All Access
* Greg Raymer’s Bio
* A Stu Unger feature
* Beyond the Felt: Poker Talk segment
* Coverage of the $1,000 Buy-In No-Limit Texas Hold’Em
* Coverage of the $2,000 Buy-In Pot Limit Omaha
* Tournament of Champions feature
* Coverage of the Kansas City Lowball event, exclusive only to the DVD

Friday, July 08, 2005

I'm Alive!

I'm finally home and my dad just walked through the door with my pain meds, fresh from the pharmacy. I have four small incisions on my abdomen and a swollen hand from where the IV was inserted.

My twin was nice enough to call me yesterday and let me know that Wil had been knocked out of the WSOP. That was sucky news but it was nice of April to call and fill me in.

Thanks for all the get well messages. I'll try to return to my regularly erratic posting schedule as soon as I feel up to it.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

The Big Day

In a few hours I will be "under the knife" and though I don't feel nervous, I haven't slept well all week which is a sure sign that I am, in fact, nervous. I spoke with my anesthesiologist earlier and he has promised me some good drugs before I go into the operating room, especially since I tend to start shaking uncontrollably when I'm about to do something scary. This was so much easier when I had my appendix taken out. That was emergency surgery so there was no time to think about it. This gall bladder thing I've known about since just after Vegas and I knew surgery was the only option so I've thought of nothing else for about three weeks now. Finally planning it gave me something to focus on but hasn't relieved the fear. The funny thing is that it's not really the surgery that scares me, it's the fact that people I work with will be seeing me at my worst, not to mention the fact that some will see a little more of me than my self-conscious self would prefer. What do I care, I'll be unconscious....Yeah, that's comforting.

Anyway, thanks to everyone for the well wishes. My surgery starts at 8:30 a.m. PST so feel free to send some good vibes in my direction if you get a chance. I'll be staying in a private room (working there does have some advantages) and I am sneaking in my cell phone so if anyone still has my number and wants to call me with some WSOP news or to make sure I'm still alive, please feel free. I figure I'll be semi-conscious around noon and probably driving the nurses nuts by 2 p.m. Otherwise I'll make a quick post when I get home on Friday so you'll all know I made it.

Don't forget, the main event starts tomorrow so make sure you check the sites on the right for the best updates on the internet. Good luck to all the competitors, especially Wil and Phil.

Monday, July 04, 2005

I'd Rather Be On Vacation

My nice four day weekend is slowly coming to an end. My poker game has been okay but I still haven't recovered all of my "lost" bankroll. I do feel that I am getting better as a player though. I can identify the donkey's at the table rather quickly and just sit back and wait for a hand to take the chips they seem so eager to give away. On one hand I flopped the nut flush and a couple of players called my raises all the way down to the river giving me a nice little payoff of $11. For a twenty-five cent table an eleven dollar pot is huge.

So this week I work exactly two days and then I am off until July 18th. I wish I was flying to Vegas for the WSOP main event but this isn't vacation time I am taking. As my regular readers know, I have had some health problems recently. In trying to find out what is causing these problems we came across another problem. It seems I have several rather large gallstones in my gallbladder and this probably explains the chest pain I had that first night in Vegas. It also explains other problems I have been having but hadn't gotten around to getting checked out because the passing out thing seemed a little more important at the time. Well, the passing out thing has been put on the backburner and on Thursday of this week I will be having surgery to remove my gallbladder. It's an easy surgery that my surgeon has performed over 6000 times but he likes to be cautious and is having me stay overnight in the hospital. It sucks but it's probably the right thing when my other "stuff" is taken into consideration.

I'll be having the surgery done at the hospital that I work at. Luckily I get a huge discount by having it done there plus I'll probably get a private room for the night. The downside is that I will have no computer access for 24 hours. This really isn't a big deal as I have gone without computer access before but the part that is killing me is that I won't be getting any updates from the WSOP and Thursday happens to be the day that Wil starts playing. Knowing my luck, it's probably the day Phil starts as well. Maybe I can convince the insurance company that I would get better faster if I spent my recovery time in Vegas. Don't laugh, it could work (in an alternate universe maybe)!

Friday, July 01, 2005

I Want To Be Like Doyle

Un-fucking-believable! 72-year-old Doyle Brunson won his tenth WSOP bracelet at 4 a.m. this morning. Again, un-fucking-believable! From the first moment that ESPN introduced me to Doyle on one of their poker broadcasts I have had a tremendous amount of respect for the man. He is the epitome of what a professional poker player should be. I've never seen him go off on a Hellmuthian rant or give his buddies high-fives when he sucked out on the river. He just sits quietly at the table and gives each and every player his respect while slowly building up his stack of chips. He moves in for the kill but it seems to hurt less coming from a poker legend of such skill, almost like he's doing the other players a favor by knocking them out of the tournament. I stayed up until the finish and I can't wait to see this event on ESPN later this year. I bow down to you Mr. Brunson as you represent everything I hope I can be.

Now go read Pauly's write-up of the event over at Las VegasVegas.

Friday, June 24, 2005

A Little Bit Of This

For some reason I feel like writing but I don't have any particular topic in mind so I'll just do a little free-form and see what happens.

I guess the first thing on my mind is Jason. I only had a couple of conversations with him in Vegas but that was a couple more than I had with most people who attended the gathering for whatever that's worth. Jason seems like a great guy so I know Charlie had to be very special to be considered "best friend". Jason, I am truly sorry for your loss. I've lost a couple people who meant a lot to me so I have some idea what you're going through. All I can offer is this, take things one moment at a time and allow yourself to grieve.

Moving on to the next thought......

I really wish I was going to the NASCAR race at Infineon Raceway this Sunday. I attended once a few years ago, when is was Searspoint Speedway, and had a blast. Even though it's only a couple of hours away, I took a bus. We got a free T-shirt and lunch with the deal plus they let the buses leave the parking lot before the general public so there was no traffic after the race. It's the only race I have ever been to and, even though it was hot and I got a bad sunburn, I had a great time. I took the older of my 3 step-brothers and he had a fun time also. He is an Earnhardt fan (Sr. was still alive) and I was a Jeff Gordon fan at the time so we always have a fun little rivalry. I prefer Tony Stewart now (we have the same temper) but I still cheer for Gordon from time-to-time. Anyway, I just can't afford to go right now which means I'll have to settle for watching it on the big screen TV in the comfort of my Dad's house.

Next subject.....

After Vegas I decided to make a deposit at Poker Stars. I was doing well in the SNG's and had visions of growing a huge bankroll. About I week later I was almost broke so I have been slowly trying to build it back up to where I started by playing low-limit ring games. I forgot how boring limit can be but I think it's the best way to get my bankroll back in shape. I've been playing the $1 MTT's every once in a while to break up the monotony but have yet to cash in any of them.

How about this....

I am nearing the end of one of the best bottles of wine I have ever had (probably why I am so chatty). I'm not an expert by any means but I know what I like and this Charbono from Summers Vinyard's is awesome. I bought it last year while my mom was visiting from Maine. We spent a few day's in Napa/Sonoma and I read something about the vineyard so we went to check it out. It was small, quiet, and the woman working in the tasting room was friendly. We tried a few and I left with a bottle of the Charbono. I spent a little more than I usually do but it was well worth it. Now that it's gone I'll need to plan another trip to the area, otherwise I have to pay to have it shipped to me, and I would rather use this as an excuse to spend a couple days wine tasting.

And lastly....

I've been thinking about what place I have in the poker blogging community. I have decided that I wish to be known as the red-headed step-child of the community (technically I have red hair and I have step-parents but, I digress). Whenever I am involved with some type of "community" whether it's church, hockey, or poker, I never quite feel like I totally belong. So, in an effort to find my "place", I have decided to embrace this aspect of my personality. No longer will I feel left out of anything for any reason other than I am the red-headed step-child of the group. Damn, I think the wine has gotten to me.

Time to open another bottle!

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

This One Is For Charlie

I've been trying for the past few days to write something that eloquently covers the emotions I have been feeling since I first heard about Charlie and his phone call from my new favorite poker player, Marcel Luske. Finding the right words has been difficult and reading the ongoing story has only added to that difficulty. I just want everyone involved with Charlie to know that my prayers continue to be with you.

Since I still can't find the words to express myself properly I leave you with the following links (especially for those who may not know what has been going on):

Pauly's story as picked up by Fox Sports - A Guy Named Charlie
The latest update from Jason, best friend to Charlie.

My deepest sympathies go out to Charlie's family and friends. Although I never got the chance to meet Charlie, I don't think I will ever forget the affect he had on a community of poker bloggers and some professional poker players at the WSOP.

Monday, June 20, 2005

The Best Damn WSOP Coverage EVER!

If you're not reading Pauly's WSOP updates then something is seriously wrong with you. He's busting his ass and getting very little sleep to bring this to the masses so the least you could do is show a little support. Here is the link to his site as well as a few other important places for WSOP news.

World Series of Poker Live Blog - A.K.A. Pauly's site

World Series of Poker Photo Gallery - FlipChip's photo's

World Series of Poker News - PokerProf's site

World Series of Poker Tournament Results - Poker Player Newspaper

World Series of Poker Podcast - Lord Admiral Radio

Phil Gordon WSOP Podcast

Now click some links and read!

Sunday, June 19, 2005

I Wish I'd Been There

I got up Saturday after 40 minutes of sleep and crawled to the shower. I felt like I was dead and I was waiting for rigor to set in. How was I going to make it through the "big day"?

We picked up Shelly and headed towards the Aladdin. We were running a few minutes late so Maura dropped us off and went to park the car. Unfortunately we had to walk through the mall before we found the casino and it took a few more minutes to find the poker room. We checked in and got our table assignments. I was at Table 9, Seat 8 which should have been lucky (my on-line poker name is April98) but I felt so bad I didn't care. I had only met two people at my table which, under normal circumstances, would have caused me to be more social but I didn't have the energy to utter more than "hi" or "nice hand".

Seat 1 - CJ
Seat 2 - Mrs. Head
Seat 3 - Poker Nerd, later -EV
Seat 4 - Maudie
Seat 5 - Reader Matt
Seat 6 - ?????
Seat 7 - Shane
Seat 8 - Me
Seat 9 - Steve
Seat 10 - Whiskeytown

I don't remember much about my play. At one point I got Shane to lay down a hand where he might have been ahead. I had Q's and an Ace came on the flop. I think he had an Ace but I wanted that pot and managed to bet enough to get him out of the hand. That was the only significant hand I won and all it did was keep me alive through the break. I finally got knocked out by -EV in 38th place. I gave him my bounty (a shot glass from San Jose) and tried to decide what I wanted to do next. Maura was at the spa and wouldn't be done for awhile so I just hung around to cheer Shelly on. I also tried my best to talk with people but I was only at about 10% functional capacity and couldn't come up with any interesting conversation. This became the theme of the day for me.

After Bill won the tournament, people started to head in different directions. Some went to start the after party early and others went to eat elsewhere. Maura and I decided to find food but we weren't really interested in Mexican. We left the Aladdin and ended up eating at the Harley Davidson cafe. The food perked me up a bit but I knew it wasn't going to last long. By the time we arrived at the after party I had started to hit the wall.

The party was in full swing with bloggers at all levels of intoxication. I ordered a regular Margarita and tried to get into the spirit of the party. Unfortunately I was done. I know I talked to a few people. I remember talking with Iggy for a few minutes. He was trying to get someone to carry him around in a backpack but no one was really interested. I told him I didn't think it was a good idea to have an inebriated blogger stumbling around with him on their back but that didn't stop him from asking. I also remember Poker Prof doing his Marcel Luske impression. I think I laughed but I honestly don't remember. Other then that I don't remember much else. Maura finally came back from the M & M store and I took the opportunity to sneak out of the party realizing I had missed the chance to make some great connections.

In retrospect, I probably should have skipped the tournament and caught up on some sleep but I thought I could fake my way through the day. I spend way too much time wondering what other people think about me, though not nearly as much as when I was in high school, and I spent the rest of my trip wishing things had gone differently. At times it's been hard reading the other trip reports, realizing what I missed out on, and questioning whether it would have been different had people actually gotten to meet the real me instead of the shell of my former self that was available that day. I'm trying not to dwell on it, as it will just drive me crazy, but even now I still find myself thinking about it.

I do want everyone to know that despite what happened I did have a good time (it's hard to have a bad time in Vegas) but on Saturday I had nothing to offer and for that I am sorry.

Oh, one last thing, I want BG and HumanHead to know I still owe you guys a shot. I'm sorry it didn't happen this time around but if you catch me at the next one and I'll definitely pay up.

Friday, June 17, 2005

It Was The Best Of Times And Then It All Went To Hell

When we last left the trip reports Maura and I were at the WSOP and had just met our first bloggers. This chapter picks up a few minutes later after we start heading away from the convention center and on to other things.

We were still with Jason and my twin as we passed the Sao Paulo cafe, home to the worst-buffet ever as I understand it, and spotted more bloggers so we took a detour into the restaurant. I recognized Maudie right away but the other bloggers sitting in the booth were a mystery although one looked slightly familiar. It was then that he introduced himself as Iggy. Even though I couldn't shake the feeling that I had seen this face before, I started to buy what he was selling, hook, line, and sinker. It was about this time that I noticed the amused expressions on the faces around me and the imposter let me off the hook by flashing his press pass. And just like that, I had met the hardest working blogger at the WSOP and he introduced me to his brother Derek. After a few more minutes of chatting, everyone decided to split up. Some wanted to head back to the WSOP to cheer Otis on while others were heading back downtown for some much needed nap time. Maura and I decided to hit the strip.

I don't remember the exact order of everything but I think we parked at Excalibur and ate at their buffet. Then we headed over to the MGM where we hit Television City and watched the pilot for a new comedy that will be on CBS next season. After filling out a survey we were given a bunch of coupons that would turn out to be very handy on Sunday. During this time Shelly had called to let me know she had arrived and we arranged to meet up in time to "storm the castle" together.

It was just about 10pm when Maura and I found the Excalibur poker room. I looked around for a familiar looking face but didn't see any. Either I called Shelly or she called me and it turned out she was there also so I started looking around and found her standing under the poker room sign wearing her Phylers jersey. It was then that I spotted Hank, I had met him at some point, and I introduced Shelly. Hank was nice enough to point out the infamous Iggy who was sitting on his booster seat with a look of Guinness-fueled determination on his face. As the fish at that table soon learned, don't underestimate the power of a dwarf drinking Guinness.

Shortly thereafter, Shelly talked me in to getting on the waiting list so I could play live poker for the first time. We managed to get seated at different tables so I had to figure out what I was doing on my own. I was in the one seat right next to the dealer and I searched the faces for some sign of a blogger. It wasn't until a few hands in that Helixx introduced himself. Poor guy was sitting in between the two worst players at the table but I think he still managed to leave with more chips than he sat down with. I was hoping to be as lucky. I don't remember any specific hands except that the first hand I played was AJ and the last hand I played was AJ. I won them both. Several bloggers also came over to introduce themselves but I was having a hard time concentrating on the game and chatting so I don't really remember much else. I did manage to leave the table with $24.50 more than I sat down with, not bad for my first time.

Finally it came time to go get some sleep. Maura and I figured we could get about 5 hours in and I knew I could function well on that amount. After dropping Shelly off at her hotel we headed off to sleep. At least that was the idea but for me it didn't happen.

I don't know what it is about blogger tournaments and my health but it seems I am always in some sort of distress when tourny time rolls around. What I would have given to have had a migraine. They hurt but I am used to them and can even get some sleep in while I suffer. Unfortunately what happened that night was much, much worse. I started having chest pain and not just some mild discomfort but some serious high level pain. My left arm also started to go numb, as did my right but to a lesser degree, and at one point I was about to wake Maura up and call an ambulance.

This is the point where some of you are going to question my sanity for not going to a hospital and you have every right to do so. Maura actually has a right to kick my ass because she knows all the details of my health issues and she wouldn't have hesitated to call for help had I asked her to. All I can say in my defense is that I am a fucking idiot. I work in a hospital and tell people all the time that it was good for them to come to the ER and have their chest pain checked out. Better to go to the hospital and have a doctor tell you nothing is wrong then to sit at home and die of a heart attack. Of course I didn't follow my own advice and spent a good four and a half hours suffering for it. I was awake when the sun came up and when I did finally fall asleep it wasn't deep and it only lasted about 40 minutes. The alarm went off and it was time to get ready for the tournament. Let me repeat, I am a fucking idiot.

Up next:

I played, I partied, yet I wasn't really there or how I didn't connect with any bloggers because I'm a fucking idiot.