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Monday, July 17, 2017

MONKEY's POST-WSOP REPORT...and next...VENETIAN!

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I'm sitting here in my hotel room at Treasure Island...flew in yesterday morning, on United! Flew COACH! (granted, I paid an extra $150 to get an exit row) Couldn't get anything at the last minute on Delta for less than $1700. Yikes! And Venetian was sold out, so I'm saving about $120 a night to stay across the street. This feels a bit like the old days when I stayed at Riviera. Played and bricked the noon $600 Mega satellite, not once but twice. Then walked over to the Wynn, Encore actually, and played their 1-day $1100 tourney...great turnout of 539 players. Busted out of that around 10pm in 94th place (paying 54) so was instantly $2300 in the hole on the day. 

No need to fear....CASH GAME IS HERE! Now I think I might get what Robert Harwell was chirping about all summer. I won't give you the number he claimed to have made playing 5/10 PLO at Rio this summer, but it was in 6-figures. Thing about playing Omaha in Biloxi? Everyone is good. There is almost no edge for anyone. A lot of swapping money 7-days a week. But Vegas? Whoaaaaa Nelly! I've never seen such a collectively bad skill set in a game. Yes...there are going to be some hands where you lose to a guy who should NEVER have been in there in the first place...but skill wins out. I sat down...asked what the max buy was, seeing a lot of chips on the table. $2500, I was told. $2500 it is. No need to give a bunch of details. I cashed out for $6280 at about 5am. So an eventual profit of $1480 on the day. I'll take it. 

Sidebar: Remember Tony Big Charles? Anyone? Kind of a legendary figure in poker...for a lot of bizarre reasons. At some point in the action...I heard his hard to miss, and unmistakable voice coming from behind me. But now? It had kind of a...how do I say this? Without sounding too mean or ugly? You know how gay guys who are super feminine talk? "Queenie" I think some call it? That is how he was talking. So I turn to look...and YUP! There he is...and he is wearing these reading glasses (I think) that have the multi-color support arms and frames...I think they call that style "Birthday Cake" and I only know that because I have a 5-year old daughter! He was wearing khaki pants that he had pulled up nearly to his chest. Hair all disheveled, beard needing a trim. And there he was...same old Tony...ripping into people. Then came the racially sensitive talk. Oh no, Tony...don't do it!!!! I never engaged him in conversation...for fear of where it might lead. Good to know 'ol Tony is still out here, alive (for the most part) and kicking! 

https://www.facebook.com/Thepokermonkey/videos/10213972856701253/

Earlier in the day, I had another famous character at my table. If by now you aren't familiar with William Kassouf? Well, you aren't following poker very closely!!! Here is a video above to click for just a dose of what he brought to the table! By the end of my time at the table...and with him having dusted off a huge stack and getting down to only 7 BB's (soon to bust after me) he had sent me a friend request on Facebook, and was reading and liking all the comments about him on my wall. We had a very entertaining exchange that the table was loving. He might be an annoying guy...but he is truly a brilliant poker player. I guess him and I have a little in common, well...at least Monkey circa 2005-2009. Maybe not so much these days. But lets just say I can identify the strategy in his approach! 


So about 4am, I was coming back from the restroom, and there he is...and he's buzzard-hawking Cliff Josephy aka JohnnyBax...who is down to the final 5 in that day's tourney. I said something to Will...and Cliff looks at me with these "Please help me Monkey!!!" look on his face! He places me from a final table we made together in Aruba ten years ago. "Monkey...wow, long time no see! Will you PLEASE do me a favor and get this maniac away from me!!!!?" "Sorry Cliff...you're on your own buddy!!! Hahahaha." Kassouf...he's a trip!!!!

So its a little after 1pm. The intention today is to do nothing but lay out at the pool...then eat a nice dinner tonight...and be razor sharp and rested tomorrow in the Venetian 5K Main Event. Today is flight 1a, tomorrow is 1b. I chose not to play in what tends to be a much looser, wild early flight and risk lighting another 5k on fire tomorrow. One bullet. That's enough for me. Christian Iacobellis...my friend, and two-time (twice cashing) Grinder/Minion, is on his way over here from the Rio to join me...and will be playing tomorrow as well. I put up a package with my investors, to get 50/50 action on the two of us. It sold out in...well...about an hour. 

Before I wrote this blog I had to go and look on WSOP.com to see who the final 27 players are. So...out of 27 players...17 are from other countries besides the USA. The rest of the world is catching up with us folks! There is ONE lonely player in there who I have the slightest inkling to care about...and that is our well-known Gulf Coaster Jake Bazeley, who has the absolute smallest chip stack, but is guaranteed of a whopping $263k right now. Sweet! OH! Well what'dya know, just clicked refresh and he is busto...out 25th for the aforementioned amount. Congrats to him. But lets be honest...what serious player is EVER happy to make it that far and go out short of the Final Table? None of us!!!! So I now officially don't care about the Main Event.

How did we do? Well before I talk about that...let me address the elephant in the room. I have one or two serial haters who religiously read this blog (which is kind of amusing, as a hater) and leave incredibly pathetic comments that I never approve and publish to be seen. He's been ripping on my WSOP Summer Team every year now since we started. It doesn't bother me. But it's been my secret wish for one or more of our players to go really deep...just to see what drivel he would spew. Would he finally be silenced? Or would he desperately find SOMETHING to hate on? The guy who hides behind his computer and rants on and on against someone who's life he could only DREAM of trading places with? What kind of loser is this? He's (not lately) made death threats in the past...against me, my wife, even my child. Threatening to shoot me from my backyard...claiming to know where I live. That's a pretty sick fuck. 

So there you go, dickhead...I just gave you the 15 seconds you SO yearn for! The correct modus operandi is to ignore shitbirds like you...and you will fly away. But you? You don't even have wings. So I guess that's impossible. I'm sorry your life sucks so bad that you have to live in envy of mine. Do you need a hug? Did your mommy not give you enough love? Did you catch your only girlfriend in life cheating on you with the family pet? Did Daddy leave you and your mother to join the circus? I get it...life's been rough on you. You can't even sign your name to a comment. Why? You scared? Keyboard Muscles only? 

Moving on. But speaking of assholes. Awhile back...I alerted the world of degenerates that on July 1st I was going to post a blog...complete with photos, and the whole story....about all the assholes in the gambling world...who owe me large, even minimal sums...of money for various things. Mostly pools of mine they have played in. So sure enough...a couple days before that deadline arrived...I get the "I've sent you a check today" (that check still hasn't arrived-shocker) and "Hey Monk...I don't plan on stiffing you...I will pay you, just need a little more time." That's after not responding at ALL for months! And then didn't respond to my reply to that comment. So its pretty obvious it was an attempt to keep from being "posterized" by Monkey. I mean...how fucking stupid do you guys think I am? Just so you know? My middle name isn't DENSE. 

So...the blog post about deadbeats...has been postponed to give these guys to step up and pay up! I actually got paid from three guys who were about to be featured. Good for them. Good move. Especially those guys who run around trying to get staking! Oh...speaking of that...anyone see the story about Maurice Hawkins and the lawyer in Florida who had the staking deal with him? Boy oh boy. That's all I'm gonna say about it. 

Watching Maury Povich right now for lack of anything else being on the TV...and there is this nasty-ass white trash chick on there trying to get her dipshit boyfriend to take a DNA test. You all know the drill. So check out these names she has given her offspring.  Kaydence and Khaos. WTF???

Has everyone heard how our TEAM MONKEY did this summer? I can't tell you how proud I am of this year's squad. EIGHT players survived DAY ONE! ALL of them! Then five out of eight made it out of Day Two. The three who lost all took unbelievably bad beats. But that's how this nasty game works. Sometimes you can only be SO good. Skill can only get you so far. You gotta fade the ugly beats. And when you don't? It doesn't mean you suck. Or made a mistake. It just wasn't meant to be. We lost three amazing players on Day Two.

So Day three arrived...and the excitement was building among our 130-something investors. Everyone was fired up! But with the top 15% getting paid now...and the really long structure (2-hr blind levels) and additional chipstacks (50k) it took a long time to get to the money. They played until they made the money...which...I'm not sure because I fell asleep, but am pretty sure it was into the next day.

When all was said and done...Wild Bill Phillips fell short on Day 3....then...only (I think) about 50 from the money...maybe less...the guy I was REALLY praying would cash, because he's had a really rough year...Kenny Milam busted out. Kenny, who I've known for about 12-15 years now, has to be one of the nicest guys in poker. When he was running great in life with his business, I saw him stake so many people, and mainly because he didn't have the heart to say no. He was an easy mark for some of the vultures in poker. I know a lot of people probably still owe him money. Kenny is a proud man. You'll never hear him whining too hard about a bad beat. Or life. If something controversial is being talked about...he isn't one to delve into the muck. He just kind of laughs that laugh of his and takes the high road. I really wanted Kenny to cash. After he busted...I even asked if any of the investors might feel like sending a portion of their winnings to Kenny. I am giving him 5% of mine. And...I haven't told anyone this...but I'm also going to pledge 5% of my Venetian Main Event winnings to him. Kenny would NEVER ask for help from anyone...but I know for a fact he needs a hand up. So if you love Kenny, or even like him a lot? Maybe help the guy out. 

At the end of Day Three...we had THREE players in the money! And all of them had relatively decent stacks, except Christian...who had a nightmare of a last level to finish with 60k. But at least he cashed!!!! 

Day 4 started...and everyone had their PokerGo up on their computers or devices...and we found out Christian was on the feature table. 888 gave all the feature table players $1000 to wear their patch! That was great news for Christian, who hasn't exactly been without his share of struggles too. And per our player contract...any player who happens to pick up some money from outside endorsements like that...its 100% theirs. 

Sadly...Christian wasn't on our screens long. He got it all in with A10...and got called by Jeffery Lisandro and his pocket 8's. Lisandro had already caused a lot of fireworks early, arguing with Jack Effel about his inability (or simply his refusal) to show his hole cards for the viewers at home. They got into a pretty ridiculous conversation about it away from the table. So...the 8's? They held up...and Christian was out in 1048th place for $15,000...exactly what he cashed for last year.

After that we lost David Chocheles. He cashed for $17,000 (806th). In the hand with QJ...he got all in on a flop of J-2-2. Gets called by the guy with 77, who then promptly turns a damn 7. Gross. 

Finally...our Minion playing on the secondary feature table...who got a little TV time...Chris Canan...was steaming along, picking up pots when he needed them. Got chopped in half with AK vs JJ...then doubled back up. I was feeling it. We were all feeling it. I got in the car...brought my iPad to watch when I could...and took the wife and kid to Hibachi. We had just ordered when Chris called me...and I could tell from the empty sadness in his voice that he had busted. Raised with pocket nines. Got called by a Euro with 9-7. Lovely. And proceeds to flop 10-7-7.. Chris felt he was good and got it in on the flop. Ball Game. 520th ($25,000)

They were all, understandably, bummed out. I know the feeling. We all do. At least all of us who have played deep into a big tourney, only to fall short of our goal. If you are someone who has been competitive your whole life...like someone who played sports...it hits you even EXTRA hard. It's the worst feeling there is in poker. Well..besides being the STONE COLD BUBBLE. That is the worst!!! 

NO SHAME IN YO GAME GRINDERS!!!! This was another extraordinary effort. The MVP of this year's team was, hands down, Jacqueline Britton. She completely took over the entire Team Monkey Schwag Department! From designing the stuff, to taking orders, collecting their money, and shipping it all out to them before the tourney started. Her energy on the group page...along with Wild Man....Kyle "The Enthusiastic Maniac" Stein...just kind of drove this bandwagon! 

The return on the $200 per share investment was $111 per share. So everyone essentially lost $89...but I think everyone felt like they got MORE than their $89 worth of entertainment!!!! Its always sad when its over...but everyone was already talking about next summer's team! And as our deepest finishing Minion...Chris Canan has already locked up a spot on next year's team! I already have a semblance of a clue on a couple other people I have my eye on for next year too.

So I offered my self up for Venetian for the price of $111. Smart right? What that does is gets all the odd-math out of the way when it comes to paying everyone! Those shares got scarfed up fast! And since I sent out the email confirming that I got everyone's shares correct...I am seeing that I missed a few people...putting myself in a pickle. But I will work it out. My investors are great people. If it means someone needs to give up a share here and there, I'm sure they will work with me. 

Okay...Christian finally just got here! Good timing! Off to the pool for some R&R!!!!

MONKEY


Sunday, July 9, 2017

Time To Let 'Dem Minions Run!!!!!

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The time has finally arrived! Actually it started yesterday, to be precise. But I was so tired from my all day flight on Friday, that I couldn't find the time or energy to sit down and pen a blog. A blog that I had also intended to write on my flight OUT to Vegas this past Sunday, but which was neglected due to the very wonderful married couple I met on the plane sitting next to me. 

So now...with two hours before I have to once again pack up the car...drive to New Orleans, and fly off for another four days, this time to Seattle, I'm going to try and get a blog into the hopper! 

You know who's going crazy? Besides me from all the packing/unpacking, coming and going this summer? And besides Carley, from missing her daddy? My dogs! They are so smart. As soon as they see me, or all of us, packing our suitcases...they just lay on the floor and give us the most sad and pathetic looks. It kills me. This trip to Seattle kind of came out of nowhere. My Uncle Jim...after a long bout with cancer, passed away last month. He was cremated...but as a former member of the US Military, he is being honored in a ceremony on Monday. I get in at around midnight...and the ceremony is at 2pm the next day. Sure I will be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed!

So Vegas went WAY to quickly. Got in Sunday night. Played a little 2 hour cash session downstairs at Venetian, won $178. Woke up. Played the $1100 tourney at Venetian. Went 6 levels without seeing anything above a pair of 8's (which lost)...somehow picking up the occasional pot. After flopping a set of sixes, I got it all in vs. two guys with flush draws. Despite all those spades in play...they turned a spade anyway. I missed on the river, and that was all over. I busted in time to go play the last flight of the Aria 500 at 7pm. Got there at 6:45. There was a line about 200 yards long. Great. Much to my disappointment, they no longer do/did their big tourneys downstairs in a convention room like they did several years ago when I played there. Instead, we get the ever-popular, money-saving act of putting poker tables out in the middle of the casino gaming floor, along with the noise and cigarette smoke. Charming.

After about 20 minutes of standing in a line that wasn't moving fast...I went to the front of the line to find out if they were into alternates or not. They were. Wow. No thanks! I left..found a place called SAGE...and ate a wonderful (overpriced as hell!) meal at the bar. I was joined later by my buddy Charlie Townsend, who had come to play the same event, but like me, wasn't willing to wait then go in with 5-7 big blinds. If you dine at Sage...I recommend the sweetbreads. Holy crap those were good! The filet was also remarkable...but if that little slap of $65 meat was 8 ounces? I'm the Pope!

Returned to my hotel and called it a night. Woke up...and played the noon $600 at Venetian. It was called the SuperStack. It should have also been called a Turbo, because it was missing a lot of levels. I had a pretty good start...then kept building my stack at a pretty weak table. I was sitting at 100k when the average was 33k...and then my tables started breaking. I got moved 4 times in just over an hour. And that never seems to be a good thing. In level 12 I went from 120k to 90k with a pretty terrible string of circumstances. 

Things improved a little. Managed to hover around average...then we got into the money...paying 54 places with 531 players. My mom and sister's plane was just landing in Vegas (about 9:30pm) when the shitty orbit happened. A guy moves all-in for 80k (at 12k/24k) and I go all in over the top for 155K with AK. No other callers. He has A3. Everything looks good going to the river...when the board double pairs on the river. Son of a bitch. So instead of having about 250k after that hand....I'm still sitting there with about 170k...or less than 10 bb's. So on the next hand, with 43 players left, I get 77. I hate to go all in in those spots, choosing to raise, leaving an almost-always pot committed amount behind, to appear to have a really strong hand. Well, one short stack goes all in...and another guy...who'd been playing a lot of iffy hands, and had the propensity to shove over small stack shoves to isolate, SHOVES. I have him covered by exactly 1k. I can't really fold. Now if I had won the previous hand...and with 250k...raised to 60k...I could  have folded 77 there. Circumstances.  Short stack had KQ...other guy had freaking 88. KQ ended up winning. I lost with my one single chip on the last hand...and went to collect my $1348.

MIN CASHES SUCK!  But at least it's a cash. Ten minutes later I went and intercepted my Mother and Sister from the front desk. They were both visiting Las Vegas for the first time in their lives. I could tell my mom was pretty overwhelmed by it all. She has recently started playing poker...my sister has for quite a few years now, and is a solid player. They both had the itch to go play....so once they got unpacked, we headed over to TI (previously called Treasure Island before it became trendy to shorten everything to it's initials) to play their 10pm $77 tourney. They got 44 players. My sister and I both made the final table. Mom didn't. Mom ended up at a back table on the verge of throwing up her "there's nothing in these" mudslides she had been hammering away on during the tourney. I busted 9th. My sister busted 7th. It was paying 5 spots. Oh well.

They went back to the hotel room. I got into a juicy cash game. A really really juicy cash game. It was 1/3 but played like 5/10. I had a lot of fun in that marathon session and left at like 1pm! Another one of those funky Vegas nights that screws up the next day! The girls went to play...and I slept all afternoon. Then never left my room that night. Basically a wasted day...and when you are only in Vegas for 5 days...a wasted day sucks!

So the next day was Thursday. Or TEAM DAY, for the Minions. I spent the morning on the phone with the banquet manager for Maggiano's. I was pretty sure we had hammered out a great menu, and the cost would be $49 per person...plus taxes, tips, and the 20% setup fee for having a private room. Later...I would be blindsided by a bill that became $77 per person...and charged us for 25 people, instead of the 18 we actually had. After arguing with them in the hall for awhile, I just gave up...telling them I didn't want the night marred by arguing over money. So I collected $75 from everyone...some nice enough to pay extra...and I covered the rest. Having a private room was a great idea...as it was quiet and comfortable. I just wish more people HAD shown up...because the amount of food they brought out was obscene!!!! By the time the appetizers were cleared away...almost all of us were full. I made sure everyone with a refrigerator/microwave packed up as much of the leftovers as possible...because there was a TON of them! Food was GREAT. Service was GREAT. 


Earlier, before dinner...we met at Rio, and got all the team photos taken, the team gear all passed out...contracts signed, and players all bought in. The only guy who wasn't there...was Christian Iacobellis. But he had a good reason. On his drive over from Los Angeles, a tanker trailer got into a wreck, caught on fire...and set the entire highway area on fire in a massive brush fire. Traffic didn't move for three hours. He was stressed out like crazy. But what could you do? In kind of an ironic twist...he lives his life in a fairly anonymous way...preferring to be "off the grid" in almost everything. So...this is quite fitting I guess, that he isn't in the team photo, right!??? Well he finally arrived about 9:30, and was able to join us all at the dinner...met everyone, and caught a bite to eat. After dinner we drove over to Rio and got him registered. 

Him and I went back to Venetian and we decided to play some 2/5 for awhile. He won a couple hundred, I won $940. That was it for my Vegas trip. I went to bed...and had to wake up a few hours later to get ready to come home. I was cutting it close, but still was on schedule. But my Uber driver went first to Palazzo...then the wrong entrance of Venetian, before finally finding me. Then she drove like a turtle to the airport. I was about to crawl out of my skin. I missed my flight. But they got me on another one 45 minutes later. But I had to go through Detroit. Squirrel had already left for her Blue Angels weekend in Pensacola after dropping Carley off at school that morning. I got to our friends' house around 11pm...and there was my little sweetie, wide awake on the couch waiting for her daddy! She came running, and jumped up in my arms. We went home, crawled in bed, and zonked out! Didn't even unpack!

Yesterday was our Daddy Date Day....already having promised her we would go see the new Minion movie. It was great. We went with a kid from her class and her mom and brother. Discovered our theater has renovated all the seats into reclining sofa chairs. AWESOME!!!! After the movie they came over to our house...and the kids played/destroyed the house for a few hours! They left...and Carley and I crashed at like 8pm!!!! While this was going on.....our one and only Minion was doing work!

Someone has placed the very appropriate nickname of Ken "The Carpenter" Christopher on Kenny...who has done a TON of work around my house over the past six months...doing my deck and fence. He did a great job of badgering me to the point I couldn't say no to him. Well...he earned his keep in Day One...the only one of our 8 who played on the first flight. He managed to put 52k in the bag at the end of the day. It should have been a lot more. His last bad luck sequence saw a short stack shoving 12k with 88 into Ken's pocket Jacks in the blind. Guy hit the two-outer and still has a dream alive. But with this structure? 52k is perfectly fine! And I could tell he played great all day...based on all his updates. 

Going today (Sunday) we have FOUR players...and will have the final three going tomorrow.  In case you missed it...the 8 players are:

Kenneth "The Carpenter" Christopher (played Saturday, BAGGED)

"Wild Bill" Phillips (playing Sunday. 4-time Minion!)
Robert 'Cash Beast' Harwell (playing Sunday)
Benton Blakeman  (Playing Sunday)
Kenny "Trucker" Milam (also playing Sunday)




as of this blog post...ALL FOUR GUYS are currently still in play!

Chris "Loose" Canan (goes Monday)
David Chocheles (goes Monday)
Christian "Monk E. Grinder" Iacobellis  (goes Monday)

I will be rooting from 35k feet! Then from Seattle! Missing my girls. While saying farewell to my uncle. Visiting with my Dad and Jimmy...and just found out...my brother, who is bring two of his sons up from the Bay Area. And while in Seattle, I'll be visiting one of my best friends from grade school...who was involved in a terrible car crash the week before the Super Bowl. He should have died. But he battled through a coma, and numerous surgeries, and is hoping to be out of the hospital this week! Maybe we will get to go play some poker. Or just find some good food and catch up old times. All while our Minions do work!

As for shares? Well we sold 404! I only have TWO people who didn't pay...out of about 134 investors. Pretty crazy! A simply unbelievable effort to get this year's team off and running! A great bunch of players, and a remarkable bunch of guys. And Jacqueline Britton, who had a remarkable run in the WSOP Monster...finishing 88th out of about 6700 players...took on the role of SwagMaster...getting all the shirts, hats and hoodies made, orders taken, and items shipped out. She took SO much stress off my shoulders this summer!!! I then backed her in the Ladies tourney...which she busted out of. Oh well! Backed my sister too...and she wasn't able to have any sustained luck either. But a good friend of ours, Kristin Deardorff...who inquired about buying shares but ended up not getting any, finished 13th in that event for $5600. Good job Kristin!!!

Alright so its 4:07! I did it! Finally got a blog in the hopper! I promise I will update more in the next few days as the action progresses!!!!! 

MONKEY

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Filling Out the Roster

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Okay things are getting pretty exciting...for lots of reasons! First..we are 8 days away from zipping off to St Thomas for the Grand Opening of our bar, Bernie's Bar & Grill in Red Hook (the part of the island, kind of like Buckhead in Atlanta!). The girls are very excited for the beach...and I have to admit, I am too! It's so freaking beautiful down there!

Two nights ago, I almost snapped off an impromptu blog post that was inspired, or rather motivated...but a guy who posted just a RIDICULOUS comment in Raymond Davis' Facebook Group, Real Grinders. Basically, the guy comes in asking about a certain play of his that he pulled, and asked if people thought it was an angle shoot. Well, he quickly find out it WAS...as he was brutally ambushed by poker players who used all forms of varying responses to let him know he was either a complete douchebag, or the most clueless fool who ever played the game.


It went on for a LONG time. I got into it...and was having a good time with it. Then all of a sudden, the next day, he completely edited the 'question' and it went from 'I' and being HIS story to being 'My friend Jim' and talked about in the third person. That managed to enrage everyone all over again. About this time...his wife (supposedly-though I have doubts about that) jumped in to support him. Telling us all what a GREAT (honestly had never heard of the guy, and a quick check on Cardplayer revealed him to have few results on his resume) player he was, and furthered that by telling us all what a wonderful guy is how and how many poker friends he had.

It was kind of nauseating. First of all...at no time did he defend HIMSELF all throughout the thread. But his wife comes chiming in? Just kind of weird. I guess I backed off exposing him and throwing him into the volcano of public scrutiny when he came in last night and posted this sappy, woe-is-me comment where he basically calls himself a doofus who just didn't know better. Whatever. I honestly don't care enough about the guy to invest any further energy into him. But it was funny. And for those of us who got to 'enjoy' that brief encounter with the guy...it was some always-appreciated free entertainment!

I took Carley fishing again yesterday. This marks the third time since getting her a fishing pole for her birthday. On Saturday I went back to Academy Sports and had her line fixed up, and bought a bunch of new tackle. We must have swapped out our bait, lures, hooks...whatever...about 30 times yesterday! And we didn't catch ONE fish. I got a few bites...and that was it. We started at that cool grassy area to the Ocean Springs side of the Golden Nugget...then moved down to the pier by the lighthouse next to the Beau Rivage. Carley had a really good time...and I guess that's all that matters, but I sure would like to let her experience the joy of reeling in an actual fish. 

I've been referred by local card player...and avid spear-fisher, Jennifer Day...to a charter captain named Jay...who I guess will take us out for a little 4 hour boat trip and guarantee to catch us lots of fish. For like $150 or something. Trying to get that booked ASAP! 

Played the tourney again this past Friday. Shit sandwich again. Level 7. Probably should have re-raised, even shoved...against 'Benny' a notorious loose, wide-range player when he raised with Jack freaking seven of diamonds...but no...I flatted his raise with Ah10h. Flop came J-10-5 with two diamonds. He made a fishy bet that felt like a miss. I called. Then I turn the gin card on the turn...Queen of hearts...giving me a pair with a Royal draw. Pffft. Never folding there. And when he moved all in...I didn't. I bricked the river and was busto.

I then proceeded to find an extremely juicy cash game...a 1/3 game with a LOT of chips on it (uncapped game). So I decided to buy in deep...for 1500. And within an hour I was sitting at 1850 and really liking my chances of getting out of there with a few thousand if things kept going like it was. Fuck that. Everything quickly went to shit. Running QQ into KK. Flopping straights (4 times) and losing all of them....three to flushes, one to a boat...all on the river. Pretty much any way I could find to lose, I lost. Bricking 17-outers like it was my job. It was...well..it totally sucked. By the time I finally gave up, I'd managed to dust off $1900. Great session!

SPECIAL REQUEST: It's THAT time of year again...where if you are a poker player, you probably have about 65-75% of your friends on Facebook as mutual poker players. Your newsfeeds are FLOODED right now with mostly optimistic posts about WSOP and other poker stuff taking place. It's kind of funny...every year is the same. First two weeks...extreme confidence, excitement, optimism, even lots of bragging. Then a few weeks later...you can start to feel the frustration of all the bad beats, the long runs followed by bubbling, or annoying min-cashes. Bankrolls drying up. Lots of 'FML' and other colorful acronyms. And then of course...in the final month...you see the dark side of poker. Talk of suicide. Talk of drinking oneself into submission. Hatred for fellow players. Etc Etc Etc. Every year. New year. Same shit. 

This is my request. Can you poker players PLEASE come up with some new buzz words? For the love of my sanity???!! First off...quit saying "WE!" We aren't doing shit at the poker table! You are! Even if I have staked you with MY money..."We" are NOT playing the hands together. "WE" are not running bad, or good, or "Bagging and Tagging" (another irritating phrase) together. NO! It's YOU and only YOU doing these things! So stop with the fucking "WE" okay???? And if it IS going to be "WE" then when WE WIN? I want my cut....and I want it FAST! No making us "US" wait to get paid!!!!!!

Next: I get it. You're pumped. You're excited. You're feeling the ride. But can we please get rid of "LFG!??" Otherwise know as "Let's Fucking Go?" Its SO played out! I know for a lot of you it's just habit, kind of like "Bagged and Tagged" is. But like some of my new favorite players have done...they are embracing the opportunity to demonstrate some originality...by coming up with something that communicates the same information, but in an original and non-annoying way. Is it really that hard to use your imagination? It really shouldn't be. 

You have some other buzz words that REALLY need to be put out to pasture, or even taken out back and shot dead in the alley. For instance: "RIP." Ironic as it...when RIP can mean Rest In Peace...like it NEEDS to do...it's used way too often, and usually by the most annoying human beings that you might be forced (on breaks is a popular place to get ambushed by these fucktards) into discussing poker with. What they are doing with this word, is using it to describe the action of "Moving all in" with their chips. Used in a sentence:  "And then...clutching a meager 12 bb's, I ripped it with a bad suited ace and prayed." Ugh. Ripped...your face...that's what I want to rip when I hear you talking this nonsense. 

Okay that's enough on that topic for now. Lets move into the good shit, the shit a lot of you are reading this for. To find out who my next...and possibly LAST...if we don't make it to 400 shares sold (and we are currently at 337 with time ticking down) two players are on this year's 2017 WSOP TEAM MONKEY!!!!!

This has been one excruciatingly tough decision to make. In one vein...there are some applicants that really appealed to me in a personal sense, who's story I really really enjoyed. The "everyone loves an underdog" in me was leaning hard towards a few of these people. Then there was the desire to try and place a woman on the team. It's great for a little diversity, and to get the lady investors a little added motivation to jump on board. 

Well, I had my lady picked out...and it's probably no secret, since she essentially was one nasty three-outer away from locking up a seat in our Wild Card tourney a few weeks ago. The invitation was extended to Rebecca McCann Campbell, but after much consideration and conference with her family, she decided to go it alone. While I was disappointed to NOT have her play for us, I appreciate her decision and wish her nothing but the best in this year's tournament!

So knowing I had to make a call to give the next two players a chance to get their travel and hotel arrangements made...I decided to go with two players who I felt the most comfortable with when it comes to my level of confidence in them cashing and perhaps getting deep in the tourney. I have a lot of investors who have been in the picture ALL four years...and while I am pretty certain they all appreciate my ability to spot talent, and endorse the reasoning behind my selections, I felt a bit of an overwhelming obligation to try and put the most SOLID team together this summer that I could. For them...mainly.

And so...without further adieu...I give you the next, and as mentioned before possibly final...two players on this year's team.

RETURNING to the squad....the other player who cashed for us last summer....CHRISTIAN IACOBELLIS. This guy is not only a good friend...but he is a GREAT poker player. We met at the Rio almost ten years ago. He used to just DESTROY Full Tilt in its hey day. Then we swapped a piece at the Borgata Main Event back in 2010 (I think) and he final tabled that huge event. He is a PURE deep-structure tournament BEAST....and anyone would feel good having him on their team. So welcome back my man!!!!


Appearing for the first time...and a guy who I have been staking quite a bit over the past year or so...with limited results, most of it due to just terribly bad luck...which I can certainly relate to, is a guy who basically just wore me down by being persistent. No joking. To the point I almost told him to fuck off and leave me alone two or three times!!!! He has also spent about 200 hours since the fall working at my house, helping me to rebuild my gigantic deck, and stain my new fence. But he has struggled financially...and I feel all his frustrations over the past year, and know just HOW much this opportunity means to him. I also know he is a great poker player. He has some very big scores to his credit as well. And as a matter of fact, back when I was backing Mike Bratovich...and he was at a final table in Foxwoods...I was watching on the Livestream...and lo and behold...I see THIS guy across the table from Mike!


Please welcome to this summer's team....KENNETH CHRISTOPHER! And on a side note...his cousin Bubba Thompson...who I've been tracking all year in HS football and baseball...is about a week or two away from being drafted in the first round of the MLB amateur draft! He's committed to play football (or is it baseball?) at Alabama! But there is a good chance he'll be going straight to MLB! Pretty exciting shit for Ken's family. Wouldn't a deep run in the WSOP Main Event be the perfect capper!???


Now then. Today is election day here in Biloxi, and my good buddy Kai Landry is running for City Council. As I mentioned in my last post...we did a commercial...and I promised I would post it. Well...I'm not a fan of myself in this thing...but here it is, as promised. I need to run down and vote for him after I post this.

As for shares? Perhaps these two new additions will spark the required amount of interest to get us sold out. We are only about 13 shares shy right now of fully funding all seven players...350 shares. Those shares are $200 per. I really am open to sending 8...and will...if I get a late run of shares requests. But I also need to make sure everyone is paid up...and have given everyone a deadline of JUNE 20th to get me PAID IN FULL or run  the risk of losing their spot on the investment team. 

AGAIN...if interested in joining the investment team...email me at ThePokerMonkey1@aol.com. 

Oh hey! Kind of a funny story. Liv Boeree, who I became friends with back when she was dating my good buddy Allie Prescott...has gone on to enjoy a pretty successful poker career in the past 5 or 6 years since we met. We occasionally exchange hello's on Facebook. Well about three weeks ago...I dropped her a line, basically just catching up. I didn't hear back from her. No biggie. WSOP was coming up...figured she's busy...whatever, right?


Then the other day I'm leafing through the newsfeed, and I see that she is down to five in that big 10k Tag Team WSOP event...and holding the chip lead. Awesome! Well...I was sitting in traffic somewhere, and all of a sudden she hits me with this really long response to my message to her. And I'm like..."'Wait a second, Liv...aren't you like...at the Final Table of a really huge event going for really huge money? And NOW you decide to respond to me!????" Really kind of blew my mind. I mean...at that moment...you had to KNOW she was getting bombarded with all the usual kind of messages you get when you're on a deep run in a poker tourney. Any way...I thought it was kind of cute and amusing. Oh...and then she and her partner...who's name is really long and hard to pronounce, proceeded to win the damn thing...giving Liv her first-ever WSOP bracelet! So HUGE CONGRATS to her! She deserves it...she's a great chick!!!!

K bye!

MONKEY

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Vegas! Vegas!! Vegas!!!

www.gulfcoastpoker.net

Well hot damn! Look at how fast this year is rocketing by! Today is opening day of the World Series of Poker at Rio. Despite all the rumors and trends in the poker industry, the WSOP is still, somehow, in control of the Caesar's corporation. And still held at Rio. Obviously, if you follow me or any part of my life...this isn't good news. But...since poker is no longer a dominant force in my life, its lesser of a big deal than it was a few years ago.


All that being said...there is LOTS of poker to played in Las Vegas...not JUST at Rio...but all over town, and at numerous properties. In fact, one could argue that if you aren't someone who's chasing poker immortality (and tacky bracelets), and maybe a future induction in the all-important Poker Hall of Fame, the really GOOD tourneys with good structures and lots of 'play' in them...can be found at places like Venetian, The Wynn, Golden Nugget, Aria, Bellagio, even semi-run down places like The Orleans and Binion's have  solid, well-attended tournament series.

Bottom line? If you prefer a less crapshoot-style format, you have a ton of choices. But if you are a 'lottery-playing' poker player...excited about the shot at a BIG SCORE? Well...Rio is all for you! And when on the 2nd week of the 9-week run of summer fun finds your bankroll running on fumes...you might reassess your decision to go chasing after bracelets and million dollar payouts!

Also littering Facebook, Twitter, and various poker forums, are all the players selling (or trying to) their 'Summer Blockbuster Backing Packages!' Hey! Some of those selling packages, I've noticed...are people who owe me large sums of money! I was sure to call them out about it too! Don't think I didn't! And, as per my promise in my LAST blog post...I will be 'posterizing' any poker player who owes me money on July 1st...right here on this blog. Complete with photos of them. And why they owe me money. And any other little snippets of info about them I've managed to gain from OTHER people who they either owe money or have screwed over in the past. Hey! Call me whatever you want. It's time to start taking out the trash...cleaning up this profession. We don't need a bunch of dead beat losers out there playing poker.

As for everyone else trying to sell packages? I've been defending a lot of them on social media...when, after posting their info...some jerkoff has the audacity to post some bullshit about how unprofitable tourney poker is, and why backing players is a bad investment. This is my take: We (intelligent people who also play poker) realize that poker is NOT a smart investment for investors. Hey! Know what else isn't? Bars/clubs/restaurants! Didn't stop me from getting involved in a place 25 years ago in Atlanta...or this month in St. Thomas. Ya know why? Because I know a LOT about the business, and I partner with people who do as well. And when you do that? You often times have great results!

Poker? Sure. Get some horses in your stable that have proven they have the pedigree to take you to the winners circle. BUT...and this is an important BUT...throw your saddle on someone who gives you an entertaining ride! They might not win...but at least let them know you gave it one hell of an effort! A lot of investors don't give a shit about someone's 'markup!' Save all that voodoo math and markup shit talk for the nerds who make up the Markup Mafia. A lot of people have more money than any poker staking package is ever going to put a dent in. They don't need Super Dork telling them how stupid they are for buying a poker package. In fact...some of those really wealthy people might just get annoyed enough with that asshole to hire someone at twice the cost to do unspeakably hilarious things to them, just for their own personal entertainment!!!!!

In other words: Poker Markup Mafia? Do us all a favor and just shut the fuck up! If a poker player has managed to cultivate and grow a strong enough network of family and friends and fellow players to be able to sell a package at WHATEVER price he/she has listed it at? MORE POWER TO THEM! And good luck! To the player AND their investors! Why you feel you need to 'educate them' to the awful investment they are making...is simply mind-boggling! Or is it??????

No...it isn't. I can explain it to you very easily! Its called, "Being a Hater!" Ask yourself this question...have you ever met a hater, or simply someone who was putting you down, or just talking shit behind your back...who's life you would gladly trade places with? Can I answer that for you? 

NO! You wouldn't! Why? Because you are living a good, happy life! You don't have TIME for all the negative bullshit. But they do. Know why? Because they are generally fucking miserable pukes. They are straight up JEALOUS that some player they think (and hell, maybe they are!) sucks is able to get backing for a handful of tournaments...when they can't! I've spent a lot of time defending my own packages in the past...with some calling me a SCAMMER and a THIEF...because I had people lined up to buy my packages. I laughed. Why? Because it was hilarious! If you can't spot a hater...and you can't spot jealousy...well...that sucks. The older I get...the easier I find it to laugh at the losers in life. The thing is...it's almost like they are wearing a big T-shirt that proclaims "I'm a TOTAL FUCKING LOSER!!!!" It's that clear and blatant through their behavior!

Moral of the story? If you see someone bashing someone for their pricing or 'markup' of their poker package? That person is an asshole. A loser. A jealous prick. Fuck that person. Laugh at them. If you see them in person? Buy them a drink. Because they need one. Or ten. Then just thank the gods that you aren't that sorry piece of shit loser! Feel better? Good. That was my goal here! 

Now, to those of you selling packages? Sell that shit! Don't listen to the Markup Mafia! Sell yourself for whatever YOU think YOU are worth...or what YOU can get from your network of poker constituents. Feel me!???? Awesome!

Now...lets get to the update on TEAM MONKEY 2017! The team is shaping up RATHER NICELY I must say! 

I'm coming off another two-outer debacle at the Beau Rivage...followed by a -500 cash session that saw me lose to flush chasing rivers FOUR times...and a guy with top top vs my top two who counterfeited my ass on the river for a $350 pot. It was ugly. And annoying. But it seems to be how my cash sessions always go. I sat there playing for 5 hours while my mother (on her second to last night here) played slots after SHE was two-outed by some old lady overplaying AJ off like a banshee (vs. my mom's AQ suited) rivered a jack to knock HER out. (the flop produced an ace...and of course it all got in after that). That old fart made the final table but didn't cash...which gave us both a moment of glee. 

This followed our efforts last Friday...when I got knocked out fairly early when I ran QQ into AA...then my mom went out 14th, paying 9. She was very distraught, but I managed to talk her off the ledge. She and I share something in our genetics...we hate losing. And take it hard. Worse than the loss of the actual money....its just the simple act of losing. Hey...what can I say? Losing sucks!

Back to the Minions...aka, the "IMPORTANT STUFF" at this time of year.

Before I go one step further, I have to recognize a gal who I have agreed to stake in the $1000 WSOP Ladies event, based purely on her making my life 77% easier as it pertains to taking on this now annual event. The making of...and order taking for...and money collecting for...and finally shipping out of....the SCHWAG for all my team players, as well as investors, family friends, etc...has literally been the BIGGEST headache in doing this thing, but one I found to be totally necessary to give the enhanced experience to everyone.

Well Jacqueline Britton, who came on board last year as an investor, and helped me with the T-shirts and hoodies...took on the WHOLE project this year! And I could not be MORE thankful!!!! She is my little Angel on the Felt. So if you are looking for someone to root for in the Ladies event? She's your gal!!!! On top of it all...she is a wonderful lady! I'm thrilled to have her on the team!


Now then...some of you have already heard the results of last week's Wild Card tourney held at Out of Bounds in Metairie...and some of you maybe have been waiting with baited (bated?) breath wanting to know the outcome.

Well...a smaller crowd showed up than I had hoped for, for starters. I wasn't going to do it unless we got at least 14 players. But when I sat there looking at 8 faces who were ready to play some poker...and me not wanting to make THEM or ME drive back over there the next week to do it all over again? I just said "Screw it! You're all very good players...and one of you is going to Vegas! Shuffle up and Deal!!!"

And wow...the play was magnificent. Wild Bill Phillips...a team member all three years prior...took an early chip lead with a huge pot vs. Scott Adams...and he would milk that stack in a very quiet fashion for hours. Gene D...a member last year...managed to compile a massive chip lead about halfway through the action, before he started losing some big hands. 


Action got to 6-handed and stayed that way for about FOUR hours! The starting stack was 15,000...and the structure was great...so just like last year's tourney, I figured it would take awhile to determine our winner. I can't tell you how impressed I was with everyone's play. Most of the time I sat in an empty seat observing the action. I definitely paid a lot closer attention than I did at last year's tourney...when Barth Melius and I sat on the living room couch playing heads up for $500 a game. (I got crushed) I am really glad I spent so much time watching. Chris Canan, who was named to the team previously, was nice enough to show up and deal the entire tourney for us. And he did a fantastic job!

The last player to arrive was Rebecca McCann Campbell, who a lot of players on the circuit have nicknamed "Smiley" because, well...she is almost ALWAYS smiling. I've gotten to know her on a personal level this past year...and despite her being an LSU fan...think the world of her. She's a solid solid player, and a very affable player that everyone seems to like. I couldn't help but think she would make the perfect team member.

Well...at around 4:30 am...we finally got to heads up play, and lo and behold, there was Rebecca holding a massive chiplead against 3-time Monkey Grinder Bill Phillips. Bill really had his work cut out for him. But 'grind' he did...refusing to submit to the dominating stack of Rebecca's. After about an hour of heads up play...the BIG HAND finally arrived. With the blinds at 3000-6000...Bill moved all in with A2 for....an amount that was an auto-call for Rebecca holding AQ. All she had to do was fade...well we all know what she had to fade. But when a deuce hit the flop...you just KNEW the outcome. Anyone who has ever played a good amount of poker knows that feeling and has experienced it a bunch of times. It always sucks. And it feels like you've been kicked in the gut.

And on the other side of the fence? We've also been the player who has gotten it in SO bad...only to get the miracle suck out. And that was Bill. Then to seal the win...he would get it in with 4-7 vs Rebecca's J-7 (again-dominating Bill) only to see Bill hit a four! And just like that...it was OVER! Bill was our winner...and once again...a member of TEAM MONKEY!!!!

To BOTH of their credits...and I don't think you could have EVER wanted to see it handled any better by the winner OR the loser, Bill (as he always is) was incredibly humble and low key in victory and Rebecca was an absolute professional about how she lost. The smile never left her face...despite the gut-wrenching pain I know she was feeling. It's always nice to be around people who don't do the "Stand Up and Cheer and Scream" when they win...or the "That's What I'm Talking Abouuuuuut!!!!!" victory reaction. Ugh.

Nope. They were both amazing. They both played great. Everyone played great. It was one of the most well-played tourneys I've ever been a part of. And is going to undoubtedly have an effect on the selection process in the determination of my final two players on this year's squad.

SIDE NOTE: Wild Bill held his annual WSOP Main Event satellite (also at Out of Bounds) this past weekend...and the eventual winner was Lance Campione! Lance is already an investor of our team...so he's in line to have a fantastic summer potentially! Congrats Lance! 

So. Where are we? We have FIVE players on the squad. And as of this moment? I have sold 274.5 (yes! you can buy half a share! That IS a thing!) shares. 250 shares sold covers 5 players...so we are halfway to the sixth player...and I'm 100% positive the 7th player will be a breeze. And Jackie has me covered on the apparel side of things! If things play out right...by the time I take the family to St. Thomas on June 14th for a week...I'll have all 7 team members named, and most of the money collected, and just be really focused on MY own travel arrangements to Vegas.

Yeah. As for me? I've decided...with some input (of course) from the wife, who has no interest in going to Vegas ("I've been to dang Vegas a thousand million times, I don't care about going to Vegas! That's not where I want to use up my vacation days!") that she gets to spend 4th of July weekend (actually the 8-10th) in Pensacola Beach with her friends...and I get to go to Vegas the week before, and play a handful of juicy events. An $1100 at Venetian with $300 bounties. Then if I bust that, another $1100 Omaha mix game at Venetian. Then the $1500 Main Event at The Wynn. Take Wednesday July 6th off for the TEAM DAY and TEAM DINNER...on July 7th have my horse Jacqueline and possibly my mother and sister running in the Ladies WSOP event...then play my Day 2 hopefully. And...if I don't make the Final Table...fly home Friday the 8th to take care of Carley while Mama Squirrel goes to play at the beach. If I MAKE the Final Table? Well...we have a back up plan for THAT!!!! Hopefully that gets put in play!

So, RECAP: I have two more Minions to come up with! I also have approximately 75 more shares to sell at $200 per share. Investors have a 65/35 majority in the team. Players give back the $10k to the investors if they cash. Players also have the option of withholding 20% of their winnings to account for all tax implications. All investors know about each other. A spreadsheet goes out listing EVERYONE's personal stake. There is NEVER the possibility of me OVER-SELLING the shares. Doing so would be utterly foolish. Once I hit 350...that's IT. It's SOLD OUT and DONE! If I do get interest once we are sold out...I then give those who haven't paid yet...a date to pay or lose their spot on the team to someone willing to pay for their shares. I am longggggg since tired and weary of carrying bad debt that I have to chase people for. 

If you are interested in joining our team of investors to have a piece and rooting interest in ALL SEVEN TEAM members this summer...and get ALL the constant updates from the players, as well as frequent posts on the private Facebook Group page (for players, investors and friends and family) just shoot me an email at ThePokerMonkey1@aol.com and you can climb on board!

I could probably ramble on about a bunch of stuff that's been going on in the past month...as its been a pretty exciting and eventful month...but I fear this post has gone on too long already! So that's a wrap!

Oh! And now? I have to go rehearse my lines for....huh? Yeah...you heard me! REHEARSE MY LINES! I've been 'cast' to play a 'Dad' in a commercial tomorrow for my good buddy Kai Landry, who is running for a local political office here in Biloxi! No, I am NOT kidding! If I get a hold of the finished product, I will be sure to post it here!

MONKEY

Friday, May 19, 2017

Update on Wild Card Tourney

www.gulfcoastpoker.net

As I prepare to head to Grand Bear Country Club and play 18 holes (been wanting to play that course for a long time!!!) I wanted to get some quick info out to everyone!

First...if you plan on being an investor in this years 4th Annual Monkey WSOP Grinders' Team...you best be getting on it! I am at 223 shares sold right now. At 350 I stop selling...as I've decided on a maximum of 7 players this year. For info on how to purchase $200 shares email me at ThePokerMonkey1@aol.com

Second...the Wild Card Tourney I am running tomorrow night (Saturday the 21st) at Out of Bounds in Metairie? I made one little gaffe. I thought 'Wild Bill' Phillips was running his annual WSOP ME Satellite at noon there tomorrow. So I picked a time of 6:30 to run mine...using that first one as somewhat of a 'feeder' tourney. 

Well...MY BAD! His tourney is actually NEXT Saturday at noon! However...I kind of determined it might actually be a GOOD thing! Some of the invited players might play the WSOP Main Event today...bust out, and NOT have the money to fire a second bullet for another $1675. Or maybe they will....and then bust before 6pm. And decide to head over to play. OR...in the most optimistic scenario...they may play today...and BAG UP CHIPS tonight! Which would make THEM very happy; as they could THEN play my tourney tomorrow night ALSO! 

SO....bottom line...I am gonna run with it. But what I need, or would LIKE, anyway...is a RSVP email, text, Facebook message...something...letting me know if you PLAN to TRY to make it. I really don't want to do the tourney unless we get 16-20 minimum. If we don't...then I will likely postpone it until either next week, or the week AFTER that. And then I will just stick around tomorrow night and play cash game with everyone for a few hours and buy everyone that DID show up a drink!!! Either way, you can't lose!!!!

SO please text me (if you have my number) or email me (see above) if you are planning on playing in the Wild Card tourney tomorrow night...or would LIKE to be considered for it if not already previously invited. 

THANKS. 

Now I'm going to go out and see how many balls I can lose!!!!

MONK

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The Hunt for Minions Continues!!!!

www.gulfcoastpoker.net

Happy May! Okay. Happy Middle O'May!

A bunch of you are currently toiling away at the WSOP circuit event in NOLA. Me, not so much. I'm busy hosting my mom, Squirrel's mom, AND my brother Jimmy...who sleeps about 21.5 hrs a day.

I've been busy working on the Summer Grinders for the 4th consecutive year now...and now that my 'big ballers' have mostly re-upped for another run, the numbers are starting to get very respectable. As of today, I have run it up to 215 shares SOLD, with about 75% of them already paid for.

That locks us into FOUR players...3 of whom were previously named, and one of whom was added via a clarification I confused myself over. Robert Harwell, who was last summer's highest finisher, will return to the squad as the accomplisher of that feat.

So...to date, Chris Canan, David Chocheles, Kenny Milam, and Robert Harwell, are all LOCKED IN and their shares accounted for. With 15 to spare.

Which gets me to the next order of business. The final 2 or 3. Last year we ran a brilliant little tourney, one that was the idea of Lord Puddingsworth, aka Kai Landry. It went so well, and I have such an abundance of applicants from the Gulf Coast area, that it made all the sense in the world to do it again. And this time, instead of 11 players...I can reasonably see us getting 20-25.

Picking the best time to do it was tricky. Having it while the WSOP circuit event is going on here means we have a lot more players in the area, with the opportunity to be here to play. The Main event is this coming weekend. They can either play in that on Friday OR Saturday OR both...if things don't go so well. Kai's place (The Manor) was a no-go...so we settled upon the place my friend and business partner Barth owns, in Metairie, to hold it. His only request? Please don't do it Friday night! Okay. So on Saturday...Wild Bill Phillips, a 3-time Minion member is holding his own WSOP ME satellite tourney at Out of Bounds at high noon!

AHHH HAH! Well...I anticipate some people who will be playing in that, also happen to be some people who will want (and who have been invited by me) to play in a Wild Card Tourney to Find the Next Minion!!!! Hence...I have picked the time of 7pm (arrive by 6:30!) to run this tourney! And I will receive help from the aforementioned Wild Bill...as well as others, including 2017 Grinder Chris Canan, who has offered to be a dealer for the event.

The cost will be $450. Of that, $400 will guarantee each participant two SHARES ($200 per share) owned for this summer's team. So by playing they are already a likely winner of some amount (because SOMEONE is DEFINITELY going deep this summer!!!!!) The other $50 is for admin costs to run the tourney. If you think you are up to my standards for consideration for the team? And would like to participate? Shoot me an email at ThePokerMonkey1@aol.com

I would like to have a pretty good idea of how many players we will have (ballpark) by Saturday morning, even Friday night...so we can kind of plan accordingly. Barth has a really great set up at Out of Bounds...so it should go off without any real headaches!

"I WANT MY MONEY, MAN!!!!!!"

Hey! Are you a poker player who owes me money? Well...there are a lot of you out there. And I'm just warning you...I'm getting less and less patient in my old(er) age. I've been awfully laid back about this topic the last 5-10 years...but I find myself getting real cranky lately. And the more I listen to old-school rap and hear them talking about disrespect and what-not? The more I start to understand the motivation behind some of their actions.

See...even if I don't NEED the money, necessarily? It is starting to, more and more, irritate me that some of you chumps are sitting there laughing at me. Thinking to yourselves (perhaps) "pffft! Ha! Fuck that guy! What's he gonna do? Seriously? I ain't payin that dick!"

Well. See, first of all YOU are the one who is a DICK. Second...karma also has a way of catching up with losers like you. (though I'm getting old, and waiting for karma to get you? I'm kind of OVER that) Third. I DO actually have a number of people who have offered their 'collection' services to me. And no...I don't know HOW they go about collecting from deadbeat losers. I don't. And I don't want to. All I know...is if I get 75% of what you owe me? I'm happy. As for finding you? It's amazing how easy it is for these guys. I don't know what they do or how they do it. But they do it.

Look. Those squares you took? That you KNOW I always pay out 100% to the winners on? Nobody put a gun to your head and told you to try and become a big winner when Janikowski made that huge game-winning FG. He missed. It's not MY fault. You still owe the money! I still paid the winners. Out of MY own pocket...since you decided to be a douchebag with no morals. And frankly? I've given you plenty of time to pay. And I'm sick of playing Mr. Nice Guy.

So I think I've come up with a game plan. I think I'm going to give ALL OF YOU until JULY 1st to pay me what you owe me. Or watch you come up with a really believable story that convinces me that you're "good for it." (a phrase I hate almost as much as "check is in the mail."

And once that date passes? And since it will coincide perfectly with the start of the Main Event? And I know a lot of you will be out there trying to get people to back you? Well...I can almost promise you that NOBODY will want to touch you with a ten-foot pole after I torch your ass on this blog. Nope. You will be what we like to call 'radioactive!' 

Pictures. Stories. Yeah. Those two combined? Tell a 1000-words. And if you think it makes me an asshole for doing that to you? And your falsely-earned 'good' reputation? Well...you are wrong. You NEED to get called out. Before you can fuck over anyone else. You know who you are. Quit being a deadbeat, loser, dickbag. PAY UP! Because Phase One....of destroying you on my blog? It's gonna be a go! I promise! In fact...you're damn lucky I'm not doing it RIGHT NOW...because trust me, the urge? It's there!!!!!!

As for Phase Two? Well...I think you're clever enough to figure that out! But let me share this with you. Because this is something I've discussed with a good buddy of mine...who thinks this idea would make for a #1 smash TV hit, were I ever to do it. Let's hypothetically say I get a diagnosis that has me croaking in, lets say 9-12 months? Terminal! Like...I'm going to DEFINITELY die. Well...that's when I pack up all the available firepower at my disposal, grab my buddy, and maybe a camera crew. Rent a sweet RV...and start a tour of the country. Knocking on doors of those who have a long-running debt and demanding payment. Because If I'm leaving this Earth? I'll be damned if I'm doing it before I collect on EVERY DAMN DEBT that is owed to me, and putting it right in Carley's college fund. You might think you can fuck ME over...but my daughter? Ha!!!!!!! Good luck with that!!!!! Plus? You will have the chance at letting me make you famous (or infamous) to the rest of the world!!!!! Good luck digging your way out of THAT hole of Loserdom!!!!!!

Okay. That should be about enough on THAT topic, yeah!??? Needed to get that off my chest!

Bar is almost open! Booked our flights to fly the girls and I...and our little sidekick, Abbey...down on June 14-19th. Barth booked us a charter on the most kickass 53' yacht for a day of boating to the British Virgin Islands. Can't wait! The bar itself looks amazing! Can't wait to start making some money, too...as its been nothing but money going out, out and out since February! But he is down there doing EVERYTHING right! It's gonna rock! I've invited any and everyone to come on down for the Grand Opening weekend...June 14-18th...we have bands and all kinds of special stuff planned. So far I have two, maybe three friends who are coming down and bringing their families.

I'm on another weight loss campaign. And its utilizing the oft-successful in the past Le-Vel/Thrive (see info on right-hand margin over there) Wow. I posted (on Facebook) that Robert Harwell and I are embarking on a challenge with each other...and while I already have the diet plan and exercise regiment all set up, I must have gotten about 10-15 emails from people telling me how I should go about losing the 20-25 lbs I am looking to shed. I guess if one doesn't work, maybe one of those will!!!!!

Is this shit with Trump and the lunatic Liberals driving anyone else as crazy as it is me? I'm not gonna lie...I've almost completely quit watching the news altogether. I just don't see the point. The Trump-haters are never gonna quit hating Trump. The Dem's aren't going to quit trying to impeach him. Ever. And Trump supporters just grow more and more galvanized because of all the BS being heaped at him. It's human nature. Even if THEY (his voters/supporters) don't LIKE Trump...he is THEIR Trump...and they'll be damned if they aren't going to support his ass while all these jerkoffs are trying to take him down 24/7/365. It just amazes me how completely STUPID the leadership of the Democratic party is. I mean...how can you not understand simple human nature? But they don't. They truly don't.

What IS their end-game anyway? Get Trump (somehow-despite a GOP majority in the House AND Senate...which BOTH have to vote to impeach him if its to happen) impeached and then what? They get Mike Pence? Who most diehard liberals think is even WORSE than Trump in a lot of ways? And in doing so (the impeachment) pissing off every conservative and probably even the moderate conservatives in this country SO much...that the thought of EVER voting for another Democrat in their lifetime would be about as possible as ME running and winning the presidency???? First, they will lose all of their remaining seats in 2018. Then? Well...there will be NO then. 2020 would be a hilarious cakewalk to a GOP re-election. It's all so simple...and yet...these liberals just continue to march themselves in to the pits of hell. I love it. It really is comical and entertaining.

The Rangers won't be winning the Stanley Cup again this season. Hence, for me, Hockey season is over.

The Seattle Mariners have nearly their entire starting pitching staff on the DL. And their two best hitters. Could be another long one for Mr. Monkey the Baseball Fan.

The Seattle Seahawks have a new beast mode I think. Eddie Lacy worked out with the founder of P90x last offseason and showed up to GB camp in the best shape ever. His first 3 games he was a monster...but then got hurt. Well Seattle has him now. And yeah...he came in overweight...but yesterday he cleared his first weight 'hurdle' and picked up 55k. I anticipate GREAT things out of him this year. Bad news? There are rumors and rumblings that management is contemplating picking up that douchecanoe Colin Slapperdick. I hate that guy. And I hated him BEFORE 'KneelGate.' I even DM'd Pete Carroll yesterday BEGGING him to NOT let that piece of shit step foot in a Seahawk locker room. We'll see what happens.

Carley got sick this past week with strep throat and had to miss her graduation from Pre-K. Fortunately....she didn't really care. Props to my kid. Graduation? From fucking Pre-K? For real? I hear they have the same shit from Kindergarten next year too. Stupid. You graduate twice, as far as I'm concerned...from High School, and from College. Period. The rest? Are just more idiotic ideas dreamed up by the parents of under-achievers. Fuck those clowns. If you're kid is a loser...it's probably because their parents were losers too. It's called the Circle of Life. Deal with it!

Hmmm...are we done here for today? I think we are. Thanks for tuning in. More soon I promise.

MONK

PS: I did actually step out of the house to play some poker. Went to the Beau and played the $50k Guarantee a couple weeks ago. First bullet, busto! Second bullet...and the $600 last longer I had with this other guy...also busto. Raised on the button with JJ. Got called by BB with A9. Flop came 9-4-3. He led out. I raised. He shoved. "I am going to assume you have Ace Nine" and I called. Yup. Turn? Nine! Poker is great! And that...is my ONE bad beat story for this post!!!