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.

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