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Sunday, December 19, 2010

And......Splat!

This year, which I was really hoping was going to end on a really positive note...has done just the opposite. I guess the good news is that I didn't do any physical harm to myself or anyone else.

I am laying in my hotel room, a place I havent left in 12 hours...my own little personal cave to hide away in...while the 'real' players are downstairs playing in the Main Event. And predictably, the field is small, and comprised mainly of the household names. I've been checking the updates periodically out of habit.

Spent all day watching football. The Giants just turned a 24-3 lead...later 31-14 lead...into a 38-31 loss to the Eagles. Pretty safe to say Mike Vick is the frontrunner for league MVP isn't it? Any my pick in the $100 Survivor Pool, Dallas, tried to give me a reason to shoot myself but pulled it out. Now hoping my Seahawks can pull the upset at home and take over sole possession of the NFC Worst.

Ordered room service again at 3am...and am now henpecking at the cold leftovers. They don't have microwaves in this hotel, citing them as a fire hazard. So I wonder how they explain having them in several of their other properties. I have tripped over so many contradictory statements this week that it has me on life tilt.

One that nearly sent me into orbit happened last night. Remember my reference to the elf-like dude who lectured me about the NEED for my bag to be relocated to UNDER my chair the night before because SOMEONE (meaning his awkward, uncoordinated ass) might trip over it and hurt themselves? Even though it was in an area where nobody like a waitress or other player would ever be walking? Well, he was at it again last night.

Before I even sat down for the midnight tourney to take another crushing two-outer. I had been playing stupid $1/$2 NL cash game prior to that tourney. Let me set this up by saying that on the previous night's 8pm tourney...seated in the 5 seat...before my KK ran into Damien's AA, was a guy who had a chiprack of $300 in red sitting right there on the rail (bumper)...from the time he sat down, til the time I got busted, a time period of about 2.5 hours.

So I have my chip rack, with $250 in reds...sitting on the bumper...and am in the big blind. When along comes the Floor Troll.

"Sir...you have to remove those from the table. Right now. You can't play the tournament with them on the table."

So what do I do? I don't argue with him. I take them off the table, and I put them on one of those little drink tables on wheels that they have in poker rooms, that is sitting beside me. He has a problem with this for some reason.

"No! You have to go cash them in before you can play! You can't have them anywhere near the table!"

This is when I almost came unglued.

"Okay, first...last night you busted my chops over my bag. Which was kind of ridiculous. Since I have this bag with me at EVERY event I play, and you are the first floor person to reprimand me over it, EVER...and now...you are on me about my chips!?? Well, last night...a guy had his chips on the table for the ENTIRE tournament! Give me a break! I will play my two blinds...and then I will walk over to the window and cash them. Okay!!!???"

He walks away. A couple players at the table comment about his pettiness...and I say to them...."Yeah, I don't know what that guy's problem is...I guess he's just a loser!"

This is where the dealer flips out. It was as if they were lovers or something. He completely freaks out...hollers for the floor. Here comes the troll again. Squealy gives his version of what I said, adding in a couple of choice words that I never said...not that I cared. I had already made my way to the podium to talk to the one actual man in the place who isnt a complete incomp idiot. Fortunately, he is the poker room manager. I simply walked over, relayed the entire situation to him and everything was fine. He told me the guy was a bit of an 'overreactor' a lot of the time. Told me to just not worry about the guy, but to go cash my chips in 'when I got a chance.' Which I did. And there was never another problem.

It just amazes me how a couple of clowns with their little power trips can upset the balance of a whole room with their idiotic behaviour. And yeah, I know...it goes both ways. It can be either a player...or a floor person. But infuse the presence of one good mediator...whether it be a player or a good floor person...and the problem is just as easily resolved.

In that nightly affair, we got down to 2 tables when I raised under the gun with QQ. I was called by the button. Flop came J-10-4. I went ahead and led out. He goes all in. From his past plays...he likely has AJ or KJ right there...but I was wrong. Nope, he just flopped a set of 10's, thats all. And I was busto. That was the final nail in my heart/coffin for the day.

There were earlier disasters/heartbreakers...as well as other personality clashes. Before I played the midnight tourney I was toiling in $1/$2 and just listening to music and lamenting my Mega #2 badbeat...when this guy in seat 7 started to rankle me. He was this...how do I explain this guy? Okay, grab an image, because I've pretty much quit taking pictures of people in casinos. About 5'11. Maybe 30-40 lbs overweight. Man boobs to go with his spare tire. Wearing awful sweat pants with a shirt, matching gray...that was too short and no way hiding his awful physique. And he had one of those beards where he clearly spends a large percentage of his freetime crafting the shape and design of. You've seen these guys...I know you have. Where its almost not even a beard anymore, but more like face art. But bad face art. You with me?

Well...he has these doe-like eyes...and everytime he is involved in a big hand (using the term BIG very loosely, to indicate that 20% or more of his stack was about to be involved in his decision process) he sits there, perplexed...and starts hypothesizing about all the various hands his opponent might have...all while letting his opponent in on what HE doesn't have. Always love the 'chatters' who don't realize how bad they are at 'chatting' while giving away any and sometimes ALL valuable information about their hand.

Well, this guy was beyond ridiculous. You know in those movies...where the actor is trying to defuse a highly explosive device? Sweat is running down his forehead...dripping off the tip of his nose? OMG OMG...time is running down....blue wire? Red wire? Clip this one? Snip that one? Holy shit....which one? Red crosses blue, under the two, snip the one...clip the two. We've all seen this scene in a movie right?

That was this jackasses performance on just about every hand that he was involved in. At first I felt sorry for the guy...picturing him as some City Parks employee, making $379 a week...where that $150 in front of him constituted half his weekly take home pay. I was trying to feel his pain, his tension and stress...rooting for him to capture a big victory. (in his world) Reflecting back on the days when I would sit with $300 in front of me and it represented a large percentage of my personal self-worth.

But then it just became annoying, stupid and ridiculous. Then...it happened. Why? Why do I become the target in these acts of the foolish? I limp into a hand with 56h. Two more call. And 'The Baller' makes it $17 with his $140 chip stack. Two fold...and I call. We get heads up. The flop comes K-Q-8. Rainbow. He leads out $25 or $30. I insta-muck. And what does he do? He exposes his cards, flicking them in my direction. 10-5 offsuit. And gets a little smirk on his face.

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

I look at two other players. Nothing. I am searching all available corners of my mind, wondering what would have prompted this amazing bluff play. I couldn't figure it out. I'd had NO history with the guy yet. So finally, I just asked him:

"Um...just curious...why did you show me the 10-5 there?"

"I don't know. No reason. I felt like it."

To which I sat and pondered for a second or two. And continued looking at him...trying to climb into his soul and figure out what exactly had inspired such a stupid maneuver. Then I asked him:

"You do realize, right...that this is a $1/$2 game? And you are sitting there with $150 in front of you?"

There was no getting through to this guy. He was just a stupid chump. I was done wasting my time talking to this freak. Instead, I went back to my music. And spent some more time studying him...by carefully watching him. I am just fascinated by some of my fellow humans. To the point where I find myself staring at them, trying to learn more. I really think, sometimes, that I missed my calling in life and perhaps should have gone into the field of clinical psychology. After about 20 minutes, he made his best play of the night...he racked up his chips and got the hell outa there. I guess my staring at him must have creeped him out. Maybe thought I was a serial killer or something, plotting the ways I was going to finish him off. Who knows!

***************************************************************

A little reflection back on my Saturday from Hell. There was a statement made by me earlier that went a little something like this:

"I don't expect a very big field in this Main event...and since I have been running bad all week, I really only see myself playing ONE mega satellite."

Wasn't real crazy about the fact they were charging $100 juice on a mega, for starters. Also, they didn't get a huge turnout for either one of them. Well, I showed up, on time...and ready to knock the thing out. What I saw for the first three levels just killed my spirits, though.

First of all, we were only playing with 25 minute levels. That's a new one. And then...we didn't have a tourney clock, again. Irritating. A lot of players who had just gotten into town and weren't aware of this...were freaking out about it. Hell, I had already gotten my indoctrination to that two weeks ago. It was like looking into a mirror two weeks ago. Then the play started. And at 25/50 I have guys raising to 600 and getting called in three places. Huh? Not the way you want to see things begin.

I couldn't hit a flop to save my life. Then I get KK...raise. Get three calls. Flop comes Q-10-5. This guy checks. I bet 1200. He calls. Turn is a Q...and he goes all in. What the hell? AQ? QJ? Total bluff? Why all in? Do I want to make another good read...call, and get, once again...fucked? I just decide to fold...face up. And he throws J10 off in my face...and starts giggling. I swear to God...he giggled, like a little bitch. I felt my insides start to churn...and my blood start to boil...but I kept my cool on the outside.

The whole 5 levels I played were just a nightmare. Then with AJ suited at 150/300 I just decide to shove and not bother with raising....jamming 2200 and winning my first damn hand of the satellite. Then...not long later, I am in the BB...and 5 guys limp for 300. I look down at AQs. Nice. Or is it? I shove all in. I WANT a call...from someone. Not everyone. Well, guess who calls? Sammy the Snickerer...and turns over A9...tells me "oh, you're okay." When I reply with..."Oh...no, you don't understand, you have 3 outs, I'm dead."

The dealer flops him a 9. It holds. A few guys at the table groan...knowing how bad I've been running. I calmly get up...and leave.

The 2nd chance tourney has started half an hour ago. For $230 I get to go sit down and be annoyed with a whole new slew of idiots. And idiots they are. First thing I'm told by the guy on my right is that the black guy in seat 2 has YET to fold a hand preflop. I had the chance to watch him go from 13,000 to zero chips in .....mmm....we'll call it under an hour. Peace out sir.

Well, about the time he left, a different black guy I'd never seen before arrives in the 1 seat. This guy was calling raises, making raises...with hands like 4-8, 5-9....K6....oh, it didn't matter. Some of them he won, some he lost. But the point is, his table image was shit. I kept hoping I would get a top 5 hand in early position but never could. But finally...after watching this idiot play one crap hand after another...he raises to 550 when we were at 75/150. He got three calls. I am in the BB with JJ and just decide to stuff all in. Well...guess what the shitbag has THIS time? No...not aces! That's everyone else. No, just pocket kings. And I wasn't lucky enough to hit a jack...and was out. Lovely.

So now...I had to make the decision...do I take one more shot at the Main Event? For another $1100? I really hate being on the outside looking in...and even though my luck this past week and a half has been horrid, I still feel like I am playing well. And what better way to close out the year than to snap off the last Mega...then parlay that into a Final Table of the Regional Main Event? So I bought in.

Actually had a table of very good players. They were all playing well, too. I got some good hands, made some good pots...and was among the table leaders. Our table was also having a lot of fun, telling lots of funny stories. Then the floor girl decides to break our table...much to all of our digust. Why break out table? We were in the middle of the line. It was explained that they wanted to make space in between each table. Huh?

Well...that table move would signal my imminent demise. First things first. I arrive at the table...am supposed to be in seat 4...and who is sitting in seat 5? This little pip-squeak of a dude I encountered late Thursday night in the 2/5 game who they call, appropriately, 'Little Joe.'

Well, you all know of my penchant for personal space. And when it's being violated, I go a bit nutso. Well, 'Little Joe' is owning the space in and around seat 5 like a Bald Eagle owns the sky. He had his legs spread eagled in a way that for me to sit at the table was going to require me to go contortionist. I politely asked him to put his legs together.

Then it starts. This little clown had the same exact outfit he had on two nights ago. Wondering if he ever left the building to change and/or shower. Same camouflage shirt, same bright neon orange hunting hat...and that same 'Get er done' redneck accent. He is about 5 foot 3 and might weight 125. And he is spread out like he's at a Jane Fonda Pilates class. And won't move. I finally call the floor over. They acknowledge that he is ridiculously violating the airspace of seat 4 and ask him to 'tighten it up' and for both of us to 'cool it.' He starts crowing about being only 125 lbs and how could he possibly be taking up too much room. Blah blah blah. This guy was a peckerhead at the 2/5 game the other night and he was being a peckerhead again. Where do these dipshits come from?

Well, fuckstick would get the last laugh...which again, makes me wonder sometimes if there is truly a God up there.

52 players. Five people getting a seat. Everything going perfectly smooth. Down to 36 players. And a guy I have already figured out is the 'table psychopath' raises my big blind from 300/600 to 1800. I look down at pocket aces! First time all day. But knowing this guy is a spaz...I don't want to get too cute and screw myself. Mainly, because he has me more than covered. No need to take a bad beat here. So I make it 4200 to go. He smooth calls. I flop a set of aces. A-K-6. One heart. I check to the guy. He shoves all in! Yahtttttzeeee!!!! I am about to be chipleader at the table...and hopefully, probably....cruise to a seat...get into the Main Event with 136 other top-notch players...and end this year on a positive note. Right!??? Isn't that how this is going to end?

How about NOT! How about me calling, him falling out of his seat when he sees my hand...proclaiming that "I caught him"...look at his 5h8h...wonder what the hell he was thinking both pre-flop and post-flop...but before I can even process all that...the dealer puts out running hearts...OH MY GOD! NOOOOOOOO! Are you kidding me? Victor. The dealer. I just sit there....numb....staring at him.

"I am sorry, Mr. Monkey...." and shrugs his shoulders. I don't say anything. I didn't cuss him. I was just...yeah, numb. No fucking way. How? Why? Come on! Then I just collected my shit and slithered out of the tournament room for the final time. I wanted to throw up.

So instead I went downstairs and endured another 5 hours of unforgettable bullshit. I can't wait to leave this place. Tried to get an earlier flight outa here. Nothing doing.

Logged onto Pokerstars a little while to see if I could make something happen with a little dabble in my favorite online poker room. Yeah...that went well. Oh for five. Just got a note from Michael Hallen that my buddy Christian Iacobellis is down to 12 players out of like 17,000 or something crazy in some big event on Full Tilt. Wow! that is pretty sick, eh? And he told me Diaz is deep in something significant too.

Despite my pretty crappy last month and a half...I have to be pretty pleased with 2010 I suppose. And its wonderful that so many people that are close to me had such amazing years. I think its safe to say that a LOT of good players took a LOT of dead money off a LOT of bad players this year...and isn't that how it SHOULD be? So...I guess that's cool.

I'm really looking forward to getting together with Squirrel up in North Alabama...and spending the holidays with her and her family...then getting home and seeing my dogs, who I miss so damn much. Then spend the last week of the year chilling at home, playing Xbox, watching bowl games...and being a 'Dad' and 'Husband.'

If I don't write anything before Christmas...I wish each and everyone of you the greatest of holidays, and thank you so much for being such a big part of my life this year. I know I have a lot to be thankful for...and the relationships I have made through this blog are very special to me. I think a lot was accomplished this year...most importantly getting my behaviour under control and hopefully getting myself off of everyone's '86' list! And getting back into the World Series this summer at Rio.

Y'all take care...and be safe over the holidays!!

Monkey

1 comment:

Paul said...

Sorry AC didn't work out bro.....have a great Holiday though and enjoy life!

Peace.