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Friday, June 25, 2010

If anyone finds my mind....please return it to me!!!!

[another retraction. Thought I woke up and saw that Frank, Phil Ivey and Men the Shyster all won bracelets last night. Sorry...I got it wrong. Was just waking up and still groggy. Sorry bout that. But GO FRANK!]

Yes...2010 is now officially becoming, THE YEAR FROM HELL!!!!!

I don't know how much more of this I can take.

And to prove just how screwy this year is...I keep on winning online. Just returned to my room after yet another day of hair-pulling results...log on to Stars...and promptly win a $16/18pp SNG followed by a $33/9pp SNG...and also a $20.80 double or nothing. Go figure.

Back in the 'real world' I can't catch a damn break or get anyone to fold when it should be quite clear just how behind they are.

So today, I go to the pool, get two hours of sun. Good way to start the day, right? Meet up with Hod, a guy who used to be a staff photographer for Rounder Magazine before they vanished into oblivion...and headed for the Nugget, where I decided to get away from Hold Em for the day and take a shot at H.O.R.S.E. Well, we had a pretty fun table, and I was actually doing okay. When I arrived I noticed I was sitting next to that kid Ryan Caskey who I just finished writing about. He didn't stick around long...he got moved pretty early. I actually like this kid...he has a good table demeanor.

Why drag this out? Just when I was really starting to like my table, and really thinking I might get deep in this damn thing...I get up to over 15k...and the game goes to Stud H/L. I get AA2...then A23, and yeah, I cap raised both of them. Only to get called by this complete.....well, I don't even know what to call him. Because I thought he was an okay player...but then he informs me after both plays that "I have no idea what I'm doing." Great. Just great. That right there...is the guy Ive been losing to all freaking summer. Its getting old. Real old. Yeah well, on both, I turn a low draw...on one, a nut flush draw. Would I win either hand or even salvage a chop? Fuuuuuuck no. Why would I? I was left just shaking my head and literally about implode. So why would anything change...when....as we switched to LIMIT Hold Em....the same guy raises from 300/600 to 1200. I re-raise to 1800 with JJ....only to have the BB re-raise it to 2400. The original guy folds (????) and I was all in with my last 400. He calls of course, and turns over A10 offsuit. Hmmm...yeah, okay. Nice hand sir. Flop comes A-9-7....I didn't find a Jack or go runner runner anything...and that was it. I was out. And again....PISSED. 6pm.

Get in my car...great, on EMPTY! Go find a gas station. Get accosted by a homeless guy. Then another one. Only this one was insane...I mean...very crazy. This was where I had one of those moments. You know the kind?

Its like...when you look at a monkey....and you think "hmmm...there is a lot about that monkey that reminds me of myself....I mean...just how much of a difference is there, really?"

Well...I'm looking at this crazy fucker....and listening to his crazy babbling...and instead of being, well...like most people, and just dismissing him and/or making fun of him...which a lot of people do I think because they think they are supposed to, or because it makes them feel better about themselves....I instead stood there, carefully watching this guy. Then it dawned on me..."Wow...you know? Holy shit...how far away am I from being that guy? That could be me...sitting there...like I just was in valet a few moments earlier...babbling about this asshole and his stupid calls...and my bad luck....blah blah blah....babbble babble babbble......" Damn...if things keep going like they're going...I could be out front of a 7-Eleven by next summer, hassling your bastards when you come in to use the bathroom or buy a Slurpee!

I make my way to Aria...the place I like to go when I feel like playing lights out poker for 5 or 6 hours, then get fucked in the ass...and leave just short of the money. Oh! Except for that one magical night last Friday...which I don't even remember! Yeah...my last victory...and that money is now toast.

West Side Bobby (Bob Smith, who works the floor for WSOP) showed up...I hadn't hung out with him all summer. And he landed at my table in the 10 seat. I was in the 2 seat. In the 1 seat we had a total jerkoff. At one point I was leaning back from the table...but within arms length...and the prick mucks my hand. New me...just sat there looking at him...blankly...and just asked..."Can I ask why you just did that?"

"Well, I mean...are you going to play your damn hand? You weren't at the table!"

Old Me....hell, I don't even know how I would have handled that...but I just let it go. But inside I was fuming. So it didnt break my heart when I raised with KK UTG...got called by his dumb ass....then when the flop came A-high...he checked, I bet out light...and he called. Shit. Turn? Just a KING! He checks. I check this time. Hee Hee....trappy trappy, I'm huntin Slappy! River was...I don't know...oh yeah...a 9. Which paired the board...giving me a boat. He flops out 2100. I min raise him to 4200...and he insta-mucked. BAM!

Westside folded a hand to him...for all his chips...and watched him show a bluff. Bob told him..."Yeah keep doing that...I'll get your chips!" To which 'The Asshole' offered this powerful comeback. "Good...I hope you do!"  Huh?

Well, Bob would end up getting all his chips! It was funny. Then a girl took his place in the 1 seat. I got my stack up to about 14k...and picked up QQ utg....yeah, good 'ol Queens. I raise, of course....and no one calls, except her...with what she claims is her favorite hand. Lovely. Flop comes Q-J-4...with two clubs. She checks. I bet a decent amount. She calls. Turn was the 7 of clubs. She checks again...starts babbling about something...and I now started thinking she either had 9-10 or a flush draw....so seeing that she had 5100 left, I bet out 4500. She went all in. Sigh....lets see it lady. Oh...how nice...10-8 of clubs. Fantastic. Flush! I needed to pair the board. Nope, not happening. great. Knocked me down to 2400.

But on the very  next hand....with a raise to 600....and two callers, I pick up AK in the SB and move all in, getting called by one guy with AQ. Somehow I get that hand to hold up. Oh he turned a flush draw AND a straight draw...but still, not sure how...he missed on the river.

Long story short...I ran that stack up to over 34k. And appeared headed to another Final Table...but as it was paying 7...I would need to chip up.

I raise in early position with A9...and run into a short stacks A10...and it holds. Damn. Knocks me down to 24k. Then on the next hand...I get AA. Sweet. Or is it? I raise to 8500 (blinds 1500/3000)...This guy on the button shoves all in for 15k. Of course I call. He turns over JJ. The guy next to me says "I folded one of your outs!" NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! The last time I heard a guy say that was at Venetian in the Main Event last year...when I was putting AA up against KK with 14 players left....and dude promptly flopped a K. That definitely was ringing in my ears.

WHY would you tell me that? I mean....I don't NEED TO HIT! But he did, and as soon as I heard that, I felt like I was going to get fucked. He flops a Jack...and just in case I had dreams of hitting my one-outer...he rivers another one! QUADS! Awesome! And now I was down to 3 BB's...which I got in with J3 hearts in the SB...running into A10...which of course, held. And I was out....11th. Sensational.

I walked by Randi...the girl who works the floor during the tourney...who has watched me take one bubble beat after another at Aria...and just had this painful expression on her face...and told me, as I was saying good night and walking out...."Bye Monkey...I love you...." Another long, long....irritating night ended like so many others this summer. I just wish I could lose early in these. Play for 6 hours...then lose like that? It just keeps happening...and I wish I knew why. It's not like I am playing cautious. It's not like I'm being negative. I was in a great mood all night...was chatting with everyone...was having fun.

Frank Kassela came by...visited for awhile...then went back to Ivey's Room and got into a 400/800 mix game with John Robert Bellande and a couple other guys. At one point I walked back there when they were playing 2-7 lowball...and watched a raise to 1200 by this Asian guy...Frank makes it 3600. Then JRB makes it 6400. The Asian guy calls 6400....and Frank caps it at 15,000! JRB folds...and the Asian guy calls. I guess they couldn't bet any more....because they both turned up their hands....Frank was holding the nuts...and dragged a pot of about $37,000. Ah...there is that number again. $37k. It keeps popping up everywhere. Amount that got stolen from my house. Amount I almost won on Sunday in the $55 MTT on Stars. Spooky. I'd seen enough...I had to get out of there.

I had a chance to talk to Frank about his conversation with Jack Effel...and the reasons behind why they won't let me play at Rio. Most of it I really don't want to publish here. But the more this thing drags on...the more confounding it gets. I kind of have a backup plan...but as much as you folks want me to clue you in to everything that is going on in my life right now...I just can't. Most of you get that...and to those who don't? Well...a lot of the things I have said in the blog over the last year or so, have really come back to bite me on the ass. Unfairly? Maybe. But the bottom line is...Freedom of Speech without persecution in this country is pretty much a farce. Yeah...sure you can say what is on your mind without being killed or put in jail most of the time. But say what you want without the risk of being blacklisted? Ha!

I am laying in my bed, and I am watching Poker After Dark on NBC...which is filmed at Golden Nugget. Tonight's episode is featuring David Grey, Karina Jett, Annie Duke and Mike Matusow. Listening to the mindless banter at the table...and watching every insignificant hand after hand....I nearly lost my mind. It might have been the most UN INTERESTING thing I have ever seen on TV. It was very similar to when you go on break...and get stuck in the cluster of players who want to talk about every effing hand they played during the last three levels. Please...just KILL ME! At Golden Nugget now...on breaks...I literally make a beeline to the pool, find an empty chair...and just sit there, away from all the poker freaks...and chill for 15 minutes.

Wow. It's been a full year since Michael Jackson died? And...also Farrah Fawcet? Jeezuz.....how fast did THAT year go by? 2010...boy oh boy am I ready to get this year over with!

Picked up Cardplayer today...and there was Liv Boeree...looking very stylish. Sent her a message on Facebook...which she promptly responded to. She's so cool...I'm really happy for her and her success this year. Glad to know she isn't too much of a bigshot to reply back to me!  :)

Watching a commercial right now for a local lawyer...Jack Bernstein and Associates. Holy shit. Anyone seen this commercial? Not only is the guy a fucking twerp, weasel...but his ability to read his script is hilarious. And he has no idea what to do with his hands. I hope some of you that are out here see this commercial...if it isn't the biggest piece of crap legal commercial you've ever seen...I will give you $20. And no...I can't afford it...but I am THAT SURE you will agree with me.

I pulled three HUGE bluffs today, and got away with them. Quite possibly a record for me in one day.

On the way into my hotel tonight...I observed the 1/2 table...and could see nothing but fish...so I decided to try and recoup my losses for the day...which totalled $600. Bought in for $300. On the fourth hand I played....on a live straddle, I pick up AJh. Not bad, but why raise? I call the $5. So does 7 other people. I flop....tada! The nut flush! 9h-5h-6h. Sweet. First guy bets out $20. He gets called by two others. Hmmm.....do we just call here? Or raise? Kind of worried about someone sitting on a set maybe....so I raise it to $65. First guy calls. Second guy goes ALL IN! For $450. Next person folds...and the last guy also goes all in, but for only $100. Wow...win this pot and I can call it a day and feel a lot better. I call of course. This guy doesnt turn over his hand....thats one thing I hate about cash game....but when a ten hit the turn...and the board paired a 5...he slaps his hand over...."FULL HOUSE!!!!" and I see his pocket tens. You have GOT to be SHITTING ME!

That was it. I just got up...grabbed my bag...and headed for my room.

Yeah...this summer had really sucked ass. But I know for a FACT that I am better at this stupid game than 90% of the bozos I am sitting down with. But that just doesn't seem to matter. Because eventually, it gets to a point in every tournament, where luck plays a huge role....the later stages usually....and my luck....just SUCKS! But what else can I do? I have to just keep it together...not lose my mind...even though I think I partially already have. Just one or two decent wins will get me back to ....well, I won't say normal, because there is too much BS going on in my poker life right now...but it sure will help me in a lot of ways.

Alright you know what? I'm now tired as hell. Not sure what I am going to play tomorrow. Its hard to play these 12-14 hour days...not making a penny, then getting up and starting back from scratch and going after it all over again.

Monkey

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