I’m watching my high school girlfriend head into her house for the last time while sitting inside my 85’ Nova compact complete with bitchin stereo system (Alpine deck, amps, tweeters and of course 12" sub-woofers) that cost more then the car and the newly minted (but different colored) quarter-panel that was slapped on due to someone that was late for soda-pop stocking duties at your local Target store. And as I sit back and reflect on the most recent date with bubbly blonde named Cyndi, I sport smile on my face quite similar to one you’d have after a major accomplishment.
But the tears in my eyes spoke a different story; I knew from others that this was the last time that we’d share a smile in an enclosed place. I didn’t have much self-esteem back then, bad skin, bad eyes, half-deaf, and top it off with a speech impediment and you’ve got a walking high school joke target. I didn’t have the self-esteem to call Cyndi’s continuous bluffs of using me for nearly three years as rebound guy; I allowed it to happen time and time again. Go out together for a couple of months, then find out before a (name a school dance/big activity here) that she was dating someone else and instead of confronting her, I’d sulk back to my routine of school/sports/work/homework waiting for her to notice me in the hallways again.
Ferris Bueller mentioned that his buddy Cameron would marry the first women he laid because he would have gotten everything he dreamed of... and that she would treat him like shit. That was me, despite the never having sex part (this is one of those parts of your life that you wish you knew what you know now, back then). She introduced me to bOObies, soft kisses that lasted for hours, and those little sweet nothings notes that got passed between Home Ec and Physics class made you feel special.
But sitting in my car after three years of this charade, I was heading off to ASU in two months and I’d heard thru friends that she was dating yet another guy from another school without telling me. She waved from the door with a smile that I matched despite the battle royal steel cage wrestling match going on inside my head. I didn’t have the courage to make a clean break because I knew soon enough that I would start getting ignored again until she needed a bony shoulder to rest her soft, blonde hair on.
That’s just how it had to be.
Poker has been a rough relationship over the past two years of play. I get a glimpse of a bare shoulder only to be smacked as I bend over to kiss it. The bankroll represents my broken relationship with my HS girlfriend. She’s overjoyed at times to see me, lauding me with hugs and kisses and promises of after-school activities on her couch. The harsh reality of variance that steps in-between the triumphs seems vast and cold. “Why when I do everything right does this game continue to spite me?”, much like I used to ask myself “why do I put myself thru all this trouble just for 15 seconds of fun (ok maybe 20 seconds)?”.
It’s because I enjoyed the chase and the rewards from the chase, despite the goal seemingly unreachable (then it was getting laid, now its a spot at the WSOP and/or a five-figure bankroll). Yes, I do have a tad more self-esteem these days, and this time I am knowingly allowing myself to get hurt by the rejections and relishing the quick, seductive winks of victories. Granted one of these days the coin flips wins will come in at the right time, my double digit outs will hit on the right pots, I'll hit my three outer, or my call of a bluff will be rewarded with a sizable increase to the bankroll.
But until then I’ll be sitting in the noisy multi-colored car, rocking to Master of Puppets, and waiting for the short blonde with Nordic blue eyes and athletic figure to ride with me again.
Thanks for dropping by, please go read the pages on the right as they actually can type out the English language without making it sound like fingernails on a chalkboard like I do.