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Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011....GOOD BYE!!!!

Never...ever...well, at least not in the past five years, have I been so excited for a year to be over as I am for 2011. Don't get me wrong...some good things did happen this year. That can't be ignored. I met some great new people, some of whom have become good friends. I had doors opened to me to future opportunities. I had my long time spat with Harrah's put to rest, thankfully. I finally appear to be headed to fatherhood, which I am very excited (and nervous) about. 

And hey! Don't think I won't find something to do for New Year's Eve! For starters I have a killer bottle of champagne sittin in my refrigerator that I will drink from 11:45pm to 12:30am as we pass into 'The Year.' Then of course we will sit and wait on our drunk friends to take us up on our offer of driving anyone home who has 'had a little too much.' That's what you do when you're drunk and pregnant, right? Hopefully none of our friends will be coming from this party down below!

But when I look back on 2011, what I will remember most, is getting deep in SO many tourneys, with good scores in sight, only to get derailed by heart-breaking suckouts, leaving me sitting there feeling empty, depressed, and somewhat cursed. I honestly don't think I played any better than I did this past year...but with few results. When you play a whole much as I do, and your biggest score is $15,000...well, that's just not good enough. 

I think the guy hitting quads on the river in Chicago when we had both flopped a set (me QQ, him 55) to knock me out 9th...instead of handing me the chiplead with 9 left and $40k for first was the toughest blow. That or playing for 3 long days in the WSOP Main Event only to get popped on the 2nd to last hand of the night when my K10 suited shove was snap called by a guy with Q7 who didn't even look at his hand, just sitting there in the BB with a mountain of chips and not having a problem with calling a 18BB shove. Yeah, that one hurt.

When I think about 2011, I will remember the day that our government decided we were no longer responsible enough to decide where, when and how to spend our own damn money. While it's seemingly okay to have a casino license granted to nearly every state in the union, for some reason, playing online poker...some as full-time professional online players, was an impermissible sin!

How politicians ever get in the position of wielding such ridiculous powers over individual rights is both shocking and appalling. This guy pretty much became poker's Satan in 2011.

When I think back to 2011, I will think about the thousands of people whose lives were either doused or devastated by natural disasters. The earthquakes, the tornadoes, the floods, the fires...then the killing all over the Middle East, whether it be by way of terroristic attacks, war, or people revolting against their government. If ever there was a year when 'signs' of a coming apocalypse was upon us, it was definitely this year. 

Thank you to all my friends who chipped in and helped me raise $1500, which we went to the Red Cross of Japan after the disaster that killed thousands.

Really hoping that fate smiles on Tuscaloosa on January 9th.
Is there anything more eerie than to walk outside and see THAT!??

I am really looking forward to 2012. As April draws closer and closer, our little bundle of joy...Carley Grace...will change my life dramatically. I will no longer be able to be the road warrior that I have been for the last 6-7 years. And why would I want to be? As my passion and interest in poker has begun to wane increasingly year after desire to be a father has blossomed. And I would never want to miss out on too much while my little girl grows up.

Does this mean I will have to get 'a real job' in about 6 months? It might. I feel like I am going to have a really good trip out west to start the year. Two circuit events for in LA and one in Las Vegas...followed by a Venetian event. A chance to really do well, and put money away. I no longer have a backer. It's not really that complicated, or scandalous. It's what happens when you have the kind of year I had in 2011. A three year relationship ended simply because the checks were going in the wrong direction. I have nothing but the utmost appreciation to my backer for the experience, for believing in me for as long as she did. 

So while I will play on my own's both nerve-wracking somewhat, but also kind of exciting, knowing that if I should hit a big one..instead of garnering 40%, I will get the whole kit-n-caboodle, and that's also something that the Squirrel will like. 

I kind of have a feeling that online poker will make its return pretty soon, with the US government standing in control, and being able to tax and regulate its existence, which, in reflection, is better for the online gamers anyway. So to think I might be able to stay at home, raise my girl, while Squirrel keeps her kind of nice. Maybe during the day...I can go log a 4-hr session of cash game 3 or 4 days a week as my 'job' then come home when its time for her to go to work. Or maybe another opportunity will present itself, where I can just work a full time job from 9-5 that I actually enjoy. Who knows? I'm excited about the possibilities.

Barth was nice enough to warn me about the evils of ticket fraud...and told me to cover up the bar code on the tickets. DONE! For those of you who may already be working on screwing me? Good luck. I hear the jails in New Orleans SUCK!!!!

I went over to New Orleans...Metairie hang out with Barth...and oh yeah, pick up our BCS game tickets! And, he has poker over there. The night started off with a fun little $60 NL tourney at 8pm. Started out pretty well, but then lost most of my stack in a AK vs JJ race...and Barth killed me off with A10 vs. my KQh right after I had doubled back up. It was funny, I had no idea I would go over there and see so many guys I knew. I was planning to go in all incognito. So much for that idea. After busting I got to play some 1/2 with the other 'losers.' I actually did quite well in that game. In for $300 and out for $1150. 

During the game I watched as my Washington Huskies put on huge offensive display against Heisman winner RGIII and Baylor, leading by 11 at the half...and leaving me with a special feeling of 'hey we are going to win two years in a row when huge underdogs!' Scratch that. We blew it in the 2nd half. Not only losing but not even covering the 10! Losing by 11, in the highest scoring bowl game (without OT) ever! And with the most yards combined by two teams. 

Located on Veterans Blvd near the Mall, just off of 610. Fun place. Call for information on their poker nights...504-889-7350.

Barth has a pretty cool bar over there. The people who hang out there are pretty nice folks. There are plenty of TVs to watch your games...and their food is really, really good. I'm not sure how the laws and everything work over there in Louisiana, but he has a permit to run poker there...I think mainly because it's two different buildings, officially. At any rate...they run poker over there pretty often, its worth checking out. 

I leave for LA on Sunday morning. I can't wait to see what kind of a turnout they get in LA for that WSOP-C event at the Bike. I have a feeling its going to be great. I'm also kind of wondering if I'm going to know anyone out there. Wouldn't have hated having a (non-snoring) travel partner for this trip....nothing I hate worse (especially without a backer) than paying $75-$80 a night for a hotel. Especially considering its just a place to sleep and shower and change clothes. 

Finished all five seasons of 'Friday Night Lights.' Not sure what happened in Season 5. Its like they got all new writers or something...because the quality went down hill. Fortunately it finished really was almost as though they knew they were getting cancelled and had 3 episodes to wrap it up...and it did wrap up really well. I really enjoyed those 122 or so episodes. Now I need to find another show to get addicted to.

I am laying here watching 'Happy Days' on one of those late night marathons. I am pretty sure I'm watching one of the first episodes ever. Mr. C didn't have any idea 'what' a Fonzi was. And I never knew Richie C had a brother! Chuck? And he appears on this episode. Wow.

I used to hate Shannon Dougherty when she was on '90210.' Thought she was such a bitch. Its pretty fun to watch her chubby ass with that awful spitting gap between her teeth doing these late-night commercials for online education websites. Hilarious. Work much, Shannon?

The race for the Republican nomination is about as sad and pathetic as any since I've been born. I mean...what the hell is going on? There is no way Barack Obama isn't going to win re-election. And just watch...these jobless reports that come out every month? Watch...they will claim that unemployment is down every month from now til next November. Watch as gas prices go down. Every little thing that can be manipulated to influence voters will be, its the same thing every time there is an upcoming election. I mean...jobless claims? Rate of unemployment? Who prepares those reports? People are so stupid and gullible. Not that I care, I don't really hate the job Barack has done. I just don't think the office of President really matters too much in the grand scheme of things.

I would say good luck to all of you who will be playing at the Beau in this upcoming event...but you know my feelings on that deal. But if you are going to be there, and play...and happen to get served by Squirrel? Don't hesitate to overtip the hell out of her...we will call it your attempt to make me forget you were there!  :) That and a contribution to the Carley Grace fund!

Thanks to all of you for your support in 2011. And to everyone who reads this blog...and I'm shocked at how many of you there really are, I appreciate it. I hope I have a lot better news to relay to everyone in 2012! Have a happy and healthy new year everyone!!!


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