Saturday, October 31, 2009


While casino play in the pits fuels the fun part of gambling, eventually you need to find a game where you hold the advantage. The house has an edge on every game inside their vaunted ceilings adorned with a taste of Italy, Paris, or Egypt. But, if the gambler doesn’t want to lay his or her fate with the spin of a wheel or the dealer turning over the next card in blackjack, they should find their way to the poker room.

Only playing poker can a person apply their skill and patience while giving themselves an edge over the other players on the felt while controlling your own fate. This author is well aware of bad beats on the river and such but you the player control whether you were in the hand in the first place. Unlike a hand of Pai Gow poker where you set your wager in the circle, separate the cards, and smile at the Asian dealer who just turned over aces full to crush your two pair, playing the cards in front of you (minus the blinds) is always your choice.

Don’t feel good about those aces? Chuck em’
Think that straight is no good versus the seven seat? Into the muck they go.

For those who can’t trek to their local casino or card room there is the online variety that I prefer. Enter a guide to poker bonus offers at, a guide for all shapes and sizes of player there’s a multitude of playing guides and a primer on current poker events both live and online.

Long time online players know the best way to beat the rake and improve their chances of a profitable day, week, month, or year is to take advantage of the bonus offers the sites routinely give to new and existing players. has easy to read guides as to how these bonuses work like the PKR Poker bonus vouchers review and Betfair poker bonus review to explain how much play is needed before claiming those freebee chips.

FTC disclaimer: This blogger received compensation for the following review

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Bleeding Green and Purple

I can already smell the turpentine waifing over the Minnesota/Wisconsin border from those die hard Packers fans sitting in Lambeau's parking lot in anticipation of their golden boy's homecoming. Many thought the Monday Night Football game played a few weeks ago between these two teams was the bigger of the two battles of Favre vs. the team he held his shoulders for so many years because of the "prestige" of playing in front of Tirico, Gruden, and Jaws in the ESPN booth.

They would be wrong.

When Garnett left the Minnesota Timberwolves it was the last reason waning professional basketball fans had to drop some money on a jaunt down to the Target Center to watch this sport. Only die-hard fans and those who found some ridiculously under priced tickets (I heard some go for five bucks) will pile into downtown Minneapolis to enjoy a pint at Rosen's before watching Kurt Rambis coach Al Jefferson and some other people play basketball for a few hours. There's no hype, little-to-no hope, much like the LA Clippers who seem to curse everything they touch.

But it wasn't Garnett's first game at Boston Gardens that had all the local media a-buzz with excitement of seeing Big Ticket in something other than blue and white with silver trim. No, it didn't hit home that the player who breathed life into this market and sustained it for so many years came out of the visitor's locket room to take the floor against the cache of players the Timberwolves received in trade. Sure some people had JR Rider and newly minted Jefferson jerseys, but as a betting man most fans that night looked upon their departed star with Garnett's number on the back, some even in the green and white hoping he'd finally get that NBA title.

This will be somewhat true on Sunday, fans in Green Bay will see some Purple number fours in the stands but unlike Garnett, Favre didn't leave under the best of terms, nor is he without a couple of world championships. Most likely the stadium will erupt in a mix of jeers and cheers loud enough to rock the houses in Green Bay, there will be several to question his sexuality and every play from the first hand off to Purple Jesus to the last sideline pattern to Rice or Harvin will be scrutinized and justly so. Their hero walked across the picket line into enemy territory where Vikings fans still (non-bandwagon ones at least) still sit uncomfortably at every game watching their nemesis for the past decade and a half pull their team closer to the Super Bowl win they've cheered for.

Defining "game of the season"?

I'd think so.

Call it a "must win" for the Packers if you will since a loss would put them at 4-3 and with their easy part of the schedule done (with the exception of the Bucs the following week and Lions on Turkey Day), they would be two games out with two losses against the Vikes (oohh that sounds sooooooo mom's fresh chocolate chip cookies gooooooood).


Monday, October 26, 2009

Good Beer, Bad Loss

Quick hits:

Darkness Day at Surly Brewery started for myself around nine a.m. after picking up a McGriddle and a hot chocolate in preparation of standing outside in not-so-warm weather for three hours. I sent a picture to a few bloggers as to the line assembled to purchase the once-a-year bottled Russian Imperial Stout. To give people a visual for those that have visited Walt Disney World, take a line for Space Mountain during the prime time of day, now lay those lines back-to-back five times and you'd come close to amount of people waiting for those wax capped bottles yesterday.

Mind you, each bottle cost $18 at face value but as I gander at Ebay just this morning... yeah $80 plus $15 shipping. I'd love to bring one to the blogger gathering in December for NFL Sunday as there's six bottles sitting in my basement (but one is spoken for and being shipped to Chicago soon). The people out there covent beer as many would fine wine as we chatted it up with a guy who drove from St. Louis to get there by six am. There were so many different styles of brew that I sampled in those three hours before I made the purchase that any lover of beer should make this event even if you're just going to camp out (place number one went to guy from my local liquor store that set up a full camper trailer on Friday afternoon and proceeded to camp overnight like we did for Metallica tickets back in the day).

There were various tents, tables, vendors offering beers from all over and once you were lucky enough to fork over $108 for the 6-pack, there were limit edition Surly beers on tap including its awesome SurlyFest and Smoke blends. And after a few games of bean bags in the parking lot, I left a little over an hour later and people were still an hour away from getting into the brewery's door. Crazy people.


On to Sunday, as you know I was working last night at but during the day it was a big test for this year's Vikes.

Most people who only saw the highlights on Sportscenter would think OMG FAVRE YOU SUCK, but truth be told if you saw the entire game and thought the Steelers won the game versus the Vikes losing the game you shouldn't be allowed to comment on football in the future. The inane amount of yellow hankies at the Vikes (some earned, some were head-scratching, brick throwing, the-fix-is-on type penalty). The pass offense moved the ball well as the Steelers #1 run D played an excellent game shutting down Purple Jesus but note to cornerbacks who wish to tackle the Purple Messiah in the open field in the future.


Get out of his way, say a few hail marys, and allow him to pass or you will get hurt. See the hate crime against Gay below:


The Vikes were rolling in one of the best AFC squad's home field and on a basic level shot themselves in the foot as described on the KFAN morning show. In game they were supposed to absolutely lose, and lose badly they had control of the game after a very slow start in the first quarter. Behind the Saints (who came back down by 21 over an very underrated/unlucky Dolphins team to win), the Vikes should be the #2 team to beat from the NFC after their performance at Heinz Field yesterday after a defense played lock down minus a last minute slant pass in the first half (which Big Ben nailed the opportunity provided), and without their star CB in Winfield.

On a side note, those attempts by Favre got high again as the Peterson/Taylor tandem isn't living up to their hype as the running game has struggled. The hope is by the time January gets here number four's arm is still slinging deep sideline patterns to Rice and Berrian.

If there's such as finding a win in a loss, the Vikes did it yesterday. And regardless of what happens at Lambeau next week, they've passed the test of the season and should be looking for forward to playing some football deep into January.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Review: Guide to Casinos UK

One thing I miss dearly after the UIGEA made it more difficult to deposit funds is sitting down after a long poker session and letting lady luck decide on the fate of my money. Slot machines, blackjack, sic-bo, and Pai Gow Poker all made the cut as to games that my gambling funds made their way towards while playing online casinos.

If you're not familiar with the games mentioned above, you're in luck. Guides to online free sic bo games, and online casino games can be found all in one place. helps guide the beginning to average punter to the online casinos and their massive bonuses waiting to be plucked at each site. Top ten best online casinos in the realm are represented, William Hill, Virgin, Ladbrokes, and have their sign up bonuses sitting right on the screen to get you started.

My weakness has always been slot machines, and the progressive amounts on slots like The Godfather, Beach Life, and Cleopatra ranking the multi-million amounts with updates on their jackpots has me wishing for some changes soon. One thing that was relatively new to me is the option of "live dealer" games at these casinos. After checking out the article here, blackjack, roulette, baccarat, and sic-bo are all offered at various online casinos providing a live dealer for the action. Should a person ever doubt the pixelized cards, one could just watch the real thing play out and know there's no difference.

FTC disclaimer: This blogger received compensation for the website review

Friday, October 23, 2009

Glenn Beck Says What?

New post up at the place where poker blogging may roam.

Hop over there to MN Poker Magazine's website take a gander if you will.

Now, I'm not political in the least. I can name my president, vice president, speaker of the house, a few senators and congresspersons. But, when it comes to debating policy and the left-wing/right-wing/X-wing stuff my head get whipped around more than a porn starlet in the middle of a circle jerk.

While getting buff this evening at the local Lifetime Fitness (really, half your membership is paid from just the people watching), I gazed upon the Fox News Channel and something called Glenn Beck appeared on the screen. The only reason I recognized the name was due to some articles in the news recently about him and Otis expressing his displeasure towards the man's antics on more than one occasion.

Now I see why.

Tonight he was conjuring a metaphor using a couple of clips from the movie "The Untouchables". While holding a baseball bat and explaning something about the strong-armed approach of Obama's adminstration towards various issues, he used the scene of De Niro (Capone) walking around of table filled of his underbosses talking teamwork and stopping behind one of them before using hitting a home run while bashing the guy's head in similar to Gallagher ending the life of a watermelon.

Some more ranting went on, cut to the scene with a dead agent on the ground and rant about needing to "take one for the team" continued.

Wow. His show seems like a bad political cartoon come alive. If anyone would like to explain the man's antics so that I could understand such bold statements and analogies, please do so because overboard doesn't seem to be a strong enough adjective.
And next time I'll stick with watching bouncing asses and replays of the World Poker Tour.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Hottest Minnesota Vikings Cheerleader

The wonderful world the internets gave me many choices as to pick the hottest cheerleader of my beloved Minnesota Vikings. Lets take a gander at a sampling of the ladies:

Being a legs man these ladies are pure gold, but not the best

Photo Credit: Katie Cannon / Metromix Twin Cities

And some have some solid assests up top
Picture credit here

Others may prefer an innocent looking redhead

Pic credit: Official MN Vikings Cheerleader site

But I'd rather gaze upon this fresh face anyday of the week SKOL!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pimp Bus Rolling Down Waveland Avenue

I think I've found out what Donkeypuncher is really doing with his new Bears tailgating short bus...

Reposted article from Clarified.

1/8th of the girls at a Chicago high school are pregnant.

Well played sir.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Putting On the Tinfoil

Its a very cold November morning, per the usual around these parts. Fall exists only in the minds of calendar builders and those few weeks in October when the leaves change quickly and drop like frost crusted lead balloons (with or without reality show kiddies inside) from the sky. Waking up at 5:00am to trudge 20 minutes up the pot hole filled roads to an arena that is nothing more than four sets of tired wooden bleachers and tin siding slapped together by the care of community leaders that felt the little kids needed to play hockey indoors versus braving the metal wire fencing and frostbitten toes outdoors.

Not to say it wasn't cold inside, as the engineers of the arena streamed the frozen zamboni air straight thru to the confined space with a hand painted #2 in black on its door. You learned to dress before you got there wearing little canoe shaped socks over your blades so the gravel wouldn't burr that sharpening job received at Dave's Sport Shop on Wednesday. Heating was provided by a garage sale special that sat in the upper corner of the locker room that made more noise than provide any comfort.

But, the ice was always perfect. The glass-like smoothness, the lack of water spots, and the ability to dig those steel edges on the surface of the Elk River ice arena without worry of slush made even the newest skater streak a little faster. Sure, your breathe still waifed thru the air with every line-to-line killer and Russian Circle while practicing the rotation from front to back, back to front, crossing over without losing stride, but it wasn't the classroom where bullies picked on those things on your face or inability to hear the pig latin conversation.

This was my time.

There were no state-wide recognition, scholarship offers to any college, or even a picture as the top scorer of the week. Tall and skinny are only good if the back your hockey sweater says "Gretzky", and while there were glimps of skill with countless hours of stickhandling practice, my disablilties would hold me back to just enjoy where I was at. Standing to the side with one padded glove on top of my Christian brothers made stick watching the latest drill play out before mimicing the movements, always waiting for something to be done first so the embarrassment usually felt at school from not hearing the instructions wouldn't spill over to this tin-ladden shield.

There were lapses of course, times of defeat and hearing related blunders that would send me back to my black hole of shutting out the world. Hiding from parents and siblings under a scowl while diving into textbooks on a nightly basis. Friends were near non-existent at the time, only temporary ones popped up for sport seasons then as the participation trophies were handed out at Angeno's Pizza those temporary tattoo kinships washed off before the final station wagon drove home and I returned to the sanctuary of my parent's home.

Looking back while carrying my kids to day care each morning as they aren't old enough yet to feel the cruelness of exclusion based on other's perceived checkpoints for inclusion into their circle of friends, I hope to teach them to be strong enough to be their own self and not let others control their feelings as I did. I know now of the sacrifices my parents made so I could feel whole if just for a 55 minute practice or for those five second of team celebration after managing to put the biscuit in the basket. It wasn't because getting up at the ass-crack of dawn was fun, it was to allow their son a few moments of normallacy in an otherwise shitty situation. Blessed I am to have such parents and only now with two of my own do I reflect and appreciate for their effort versus wallowing in self-pity because certain body parts came out defective.

While I may never completely escape that black hole, there's a light being shown by those I've chosen to surround myself with in the past few years and its with their no-strings-attached friendship that makes my decision to become a parent easier with every non eaten piece of food on the multi-colored Ikea plates and every bedtime hug that will fade as they grow.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Skol for Bier!

After being knocked down by the flu/cold for three days, the rest of the weekend gave a little sunshine to these parts that have already been kissed with frost for two weeks.

Saturday morning waking up without feeling the chills while snacking on a Jimmy Dean breakfast sandwich was a big improvement over spending the better part of Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday under covers with watching Sportscenter re-runs for the better part of the day. Being naturally cold-blooded, a "normal" temperature throws my body out-of-whack and into a pool of suck. After not being sick for a few years, and strangely coming right after I got the flu shot for the first time... online poker was my friend (and foe) while guzzling Vitamin C to get better by the weekend.

After Wyatt's soccer game (and victory over the previously undefeated North Side 00's who's kids decided to voice their displeasure of defeat by throwing their after game juice boxes at the coach) it was time to see a friend who was in the area for some live poker. The drive from Maple Grove to Columbus takes all of 30 minutes and the fall colors in full red/yellow/purple on the side roads before hitting Interstate 35W made the commute a framed view of this beautiful state one more time before the plow attached salt trucks clear the road before two feet of snow causes another delay. Hot chocolate to clear the senses was acquired at Caribou Coffee (not Starbucks, and should you ever visit this state, go there instead and thank yourself for doing so) in Lino Lakes before meeting up with Oh Captain at Running Aces Card Club.

He was there for the Desert Heat playoffs of the Minnesota Poker League for a shot at nine different $2K seats at a tourney in Vegas (Red Rock Casino). Since I was going to rail him for a bit and still needed to get home for my annual Oktoberfest party there was time to play a little $4/$8 with half kill Omaha 8 or better. After chatting it up inside the card club's adjacent conference room that had 15-20 tables of hardened amateurs players from all over the state, I was just about to excuse myself to chase some wheel draws with the AARP crowd (but more likely being drawn to the no commission/no ante Pai Gow table) when a skinny dude with official looking polo shirt walked up and asked if I was playing.

"No, I'm here for my friend" as I was wearing my Binion's Poker Classic shirt.

"How would you like to deal? You get free sodas!".

Oh Captain enjoyed a slight snicker as I went to receive instructions on how to deal (no bridging cards, kicking someone under the table when its their turn to bet is bad etiquette, mumbling something about stealing the blinds of the rock in the seven seat also is in poor taste, etc. etc.). Of course being an ass, I calmly asked what game they would be playing. The instructor trying to be an ass answered "Omaha 8 or Better". I informed him I'd much rather deal that then that stupid two card game but it fell on deaf ears as my table also expressed no desire to play four card bingo.

My newly acquired 100s would have to sit in my money clip at Table 10 for the next three hours as I took great pleasure showing off my non-existant dealing skills (and found out its a little tougher than I thought) to Oh Captian and the nine-handed table. There would be only one bust-out at my table (KK vs. AA) as players started with a friendly 100 big blinds and 25 minute fairly slow rising levels. Oh Captain couldn't get much steam going and busted out shortly after I had returned home to set the brats into the slow cooked sauerkraut, but of course he managed to snap a picture of me before I took off without laying one bet on the tables.


Party interlude. It was fun, crowded, fun, and there was food. Maybe beer and food. Lots of food and beer with more food. Sehr gut ya!

Best. Party. Recap. Ever.


After my wife refused to acknowledge our trashed home, I set out for the first two hours of Sunday morning cleaning up the residue of last night's bonfire and booze with two less chairs that broke and became firewood and one less spouse that cursed every ray of sunshine coming thru our treatment-less new energy efficient windows. Luckily for her my daughter found a three hour long Strawberry Shortcake DVD to play at sizable volumes in the bedroom to help her break into this BERRY-GOOD DAY!

Any NFL Sunday is a good day, even the bye week because there is football viewing and beer. Well, except I had no desire to even look at the tasty leftover hop-fest in my fridge but at least the football was pleasing despite the outcome. The Vikes played like Super Bowl favorites for exactly one quarter, dominating the Ravens on both sides of the ball and slicing thru Ray Ray and company in the starting quarter as if they were the Lions/Rams/Tampa Breeze. But in a huge twist to the first five games they got horribly out played in the second half as the Vikes defense went to prevent mode with star CB Winfield out with a foot injury and prevented exactly nothing while giving up 21 points, most from by an unstoppable Ray Rice who notched together a whopping seven yards in the first half.

Down 31-30 Favre hit Sidney Rice on a deep slant pattern and Chilly ran the ball into the ground for three downs instead of trying to punch it in from the 20 (bad bad bad), Longwell nailed the kick to go up 33-31. If you watched Sportscenter, Sunday Night Football, etc. etc. you probably saw Flacco rally the Ravens down the field with two minutes left leaving a 44 yard kick for the win and a glum Favre on the sidelines who had to have T-Jack explain to him that the oblong pigskin kicked by Hauschka did not split the uprights as the endzone crowd on the left knew it missed right away but the crowd on the right looked like it was ready to throw their $8 flat beers in disgust of a wasted victory.

A good win? Perhaps for three quarters but the glaring absence of Winfield in the defensive backfield exposed a young CB crew and how important he is to plugging holes for the usually shut-down run D. Hats off to Flacco for taking full advantage of the worn out defense. A big boo to the CBS crew for missing the homecoming story of Matt Birk, didn't hear one peep of our former stalwart at Center returning to the Metrodome as per the usual they were too busy coming up with Favre quotes to blend in the real stories of the game. Trust me, I'm loving that he's here as having a competent quarterback has changed the outlook of the season ten-fold but STOP SUCKING HIS DICK THROUGH THE WHOLE TELECAST!

Now if you'll excuse me I'll be needing to stock up on Purple paper bags for the next two weeks with Mean Gene's Steelers and another epic meeting with those lowly Packers at Lambeau. If they split these games the Vikes are for real, stamp them as NFC front-runners with the Giants and godly offense of the Saints. SKOL!!!!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

BettingChoice UK Site Review

This being Sunday afternoon with my beloved Minnesota Vikings marching up and down the field on the Ravens during the early National Football league games, my mind wanders to my favorite to do while watching the games. True, having a pint or three of Surly would rank up there but having a few bucks on the game make it even more fun to root on the Purple.

As we skip across the pond there’s a place where degenerates and weekend punters alike can get their gamble on to all sorts of sporting and just about anything you’d like to lay a wager on. Enter BettingChoice UK with their online sportsbook betting tips and a well-kept front page of information to guide the bettor to the best UK betting sites out there. On the top left you’ll find “Top 10 Best Offers” for deposit bonuses to sites like William Hill and Ladbrokes. Scrolling down a bit is a step-ladder index to the various sports they offer guides to betting on such as golf betting tips and rugby betting tips. Checking out the golfing tips one can find articles from Scott O’Brian and Alan Benders on European Tour and PGA Tour events (here’s a quick hint I hear that Eldrick Woods guy is known to win once in a while).

Horse Racing, Cricket, Football (note to US bettors, this is soccer not the game you’re watching onthe Red Zone Channel) guides in an all-inclusive spot to give you an edge and hopefully drop a few Dollars/Pounds/Euros back in your pockets with more informed bets.

FTC disclosure: This blogger received compensation for the following review

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Something Else Matters

Common sense.

Many would claim people of this country have lost it somewhere between its nanny state laws and people who dress themselves to shop at WalMart. Take for example this Delaware 1st grader who got slapped with a 45 day suspension because he brought his favorite camping utensil to school. No it was not a three-prong hot dog/marshmellow campfire fork with sharp points for potential intestines-on-a-stick accidents.

Much worse as described by Jennifer Jankowski a Special Ed teacher at the school in the AP article:

Jennifer Jankowski, who runs the special education programs at Jennie Smith
Elementary in Newark, said schools need to be vigilant about protecting
students. If Zachary or another student had been hurt by the knife, she said,
the district would have taken the blame.

"If we can't punish him, then what about kids that did bring (a weapon) for
bad things?" Jankowski said. "There's more to the school's side than just us
being mean and not taking this child's interests into account."

I doubt there's much debate if some kid is flashing some brass knuckles or daddy's homemade pipe bomb there's should be a sense of urgency about disarming the student before the kids learn the words explosion and concussion. Common sense.

No, Miss/Mrs. Jankowski is up in arms because the school shouldn't have to make judgement calls when it comes to a kid bringing in a retractable utensil tool to eat with (probably similar to one shown here) versus a weapon like ones shown here. Granted the article does not explain if the student got stabby with the kid who received her fifth straight Outstanding mark on the paper-mache planet she built versus his Satisfactory grade but we'll give six year old Zack the benefit of the doubt for now unless TMZ comes up with some sorrid history of him smoking crack rocks with Lohan and Winehouse before nap time in Kindergarten last year.


Similar lapses in common sense found this sick blogger at a packed Target Center (and I mean PACKED, no seat left empty all the way to the rafters and probably eclipsed the season attendance of the Minnesota Lynx) last night to strain his neck to the sweet melody of Metallica's Death Magnetic tour.

Its been over ten years, two kids, one four to five year span of remembering very little, three houses since I last saw Hetfield and crew tear up the stage in a pasture somewhere near a river in Wisconsin, or was it the Metrodome?

My memory sucks and do not expect a Dr. Pauly or Coventry-esque replay of the concert here. I am not an avid concert go'er anymore but it was damn fun last night to not only see my favorite band live again, but to people watch.

My body felt the chills of the first strums of Ride the Lightning, the roller-coaster of One complete with pyrotechnics, and the sorrow of Nothing Else Matters. I was forced back to deeper, darker points in my life where the guitar riffs of Cliff Burton (r.i.p.) and booming drum slides of Lars played out on my ghetto blaster that I religiously saved my Target paychecks for, to get thru the day. Self-loathing came easy for a person who had zero self-esteem, the inward struggle to finish that calculus homework just to get mercilessly teased the next day thanks to my nerdy/preppy/jock outward appearance that never caught on and tentative communication skills thanks to my partial deafness.

I closed my eyes several times last night to reach for those repressed memories but they are all but gone since there's more important things in life to reflect on, like the donkey boy in the skin tight coucert T that kept wandering in and out of the aisle tripping balls on a mix of flat beer/pot/his skanky girlfriends overuse of perfume.

Black shirts were of course the norm, some sporting The Misfits, and the seemingly buff crowd where over half proclaimed this to be their first show when asked by Hetfield, were donning the cliqued Affliction garb. Seven rows down below me on the floor was the mosh pit that in younger days I had participated in while letting out all anger to bands like Pantera and Rage Against the Machine. Shaking my head at yet more youthful stupidity as I watched more than one crowd surfing chick get dumped on her head as the mix of shirtless Tyler Durden/Brock Lesnar types blindsided each other with flying elbows to the mid-section.

Maturity and a bout of what might be the flu kept me in my seat to watch the aging band take life one more time with its encore of Seek and Destroy after several inflatable balls shot out of the tops of the stadium and this writer was snapped out of the dream scene, placed back into the present by more idiots getting carted off by the powder blue shirts of the Minneapolis Police.

Slowly my legs muscles which atrophied after standing for over two hour allowed myself to head back up the concrete steps out to my metallic green Chevy which thankfully was spared from any raging metalheads and took me back home to a softly snoring wife and to a better place wherever I may roam from here (Ok, I had to get at least one song in there!).


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Purple Prelude Over

Due to viral and unknown attacks to my body these past few days, the Vikings/Twins recap (or endcap for the Twins) that was written in my head (dude, it was soooooo choice) did not get put out to these pages until now. Or it could have been laughing too hard at the People of WalMart website. Some of those pics are worse than the 2 girls 1 cup (NOT LINKING IT!) video from last year, but these future Jerry Springer guests are all worth a good laugh.

And since I'm more concerned with downing five gallons of Vitamin C for the next 24 hours the awesomeness of those words will forever be embedded on the semi-rigid pillow in my bedroom that I passed out on while trying to stay up for the entertaining Jets/Dolphins game (excellent ending as shown on Sportscenter this morning).

On to the Vikes.

This week's game went as planned, they started off quickly and coasted to a win over this year's favorite to go 0-16 as the horrible St. Louis Rams were overmatched as they have been all year on both sides of the ball. Jared Allen collected more sack pelts and a touchdown as Favre threw at a 75% completion chip but was showing a bit of the wild side with more downfield passes and one head-scratching interception. That luxury of freebee give-a-aways is gone as the next three games on the Purple's schedule will determine if the team is real or just posing as a Super Bowl contender.

First, a very pissed off Ray Lewis and Terrell Suggs visit the Metrodome this week. After losing to the Pats by way of pussy-footing Brady whinning like a 3-year old who didn't get the Barbie goes to Starbucks playset complete with the hot 19-year old History major as a barista and usable foam machine when he didn't get the "please don't breathe on my knees" call from the ref, then the flag was thrown and Dreamboat led the cheaters to a win. Last week the Bengals (no Bungles this year, especially with that red-hot D) scored in the last minute to yank another win from Ravens who come into the Twin Cities at 3 and 2. Matt Birk is coming home (miss him), Flacco is solid at QB, Ray Rice is heading up a stacked running back core with McGahee and McClain in the winds, and of course what will be the talk of most announcers this week is the defense.

You'll hear "defensive struggle" on the pregame shows because both sides have built their recent seasons on defense and will continue to do so. But, the Vikes' run D hasn't been as sharp as in recent years when they nearly broke the NFL record for least amount of run yards allowed in a season. But the flip side to that is more pressure on the quarterback as shown by the front four piling up sacks.

Should the Vikes come out of this nasty three game stretch (Pittsburgh at Heinz Field and what's sure to be another epic game Favre's return to Lambeau) before the bye week with a 2-1 record stamp this team as a favorite to head deep into the postseason. 1-2 or *puke* 0-3 and the prelude to the season was a bunch of smoke and mirrors to merchandise Favre as much as possible to get a new stadium (as seen by this Favre commemorative football as admonished on a Packer's fan site they've been hawking on TV like a desperate Wall Street trader on his last vile of coke and needs to close a seven figure trade by the bell or he loses his wife, stripper girlfriend, two Bentleys, and summer home in the Hamptons). I don't know who would gag more at the sight of that ball, lifelong Packer fans seeing all of Favre's PACKERS accomplishments sprayed across the Purple and Gold, or Vikes fans as being victim of several of those wins.

A-B-C Vikes, Always Be Closing. Get it done.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Rock Em', Sock Em, Fight, Fight, Fight

There's some poker on Tee-Vee tonight as Father Andrew Trapp will be taking on a Team PokerStars Pros for a shot at $1 Million today in the PokerStars Million Dollar Challenge.

Check out the video below:

Watch Million Dollar Challenge on

But, first its NFL Sunday!! For Vikings fans we're hoping for a continuation of the tide, and no injuries against the woefully bad St. Louis Rams. A trap game the pundits are calling it, I call it a reason to sport my new fanboi acquired Jared Allen jersey that I ordered at the beginning of the season. No sack dances today as last night I played in a softball tourney in 35 degree weather, while that may seem fine to our friends to the north, the temp is in fahrenheit. Add on a 20 mph wind and just gripping the ball to pitch became a chore. But, a recollection of day's past when spending a day or a weekend at a sports bar with two sweat soaked uniforms and a dozen empty Miller Lite pitchers on circular raised tables was the preferred way to enjoy a weekend.

Now, older, wiser, and body feeling like a Packer's offensive lineman from last week this morning, sitting reclined with Wyatt munching on Fruit Loops while Casey Kasem revives his role of Shaggy on Scooby Doo's adventures seems like a safer play...

... at least until it SKOL TIME!!!!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Minnesota State Poker Tour Launch

Usually my Thursday nights are set for dusting off a few bucks online in the name of drinks and having fun while playing poker. Omaha, Texas Holdem, Badugi, H.O.R.S.E., High card 4 rollz it doesn't matter along as the dollar amount attached to the tournament is in the single digits or the first number is uno, I'll pull it up and start grinding my way to decent steak with yukon gold potatoes at Pittsburgh Blue.

Usually, a break-even night is in the cards with the occasional final table run that leaves my fledgling-sized online bankroll with up-tick. Am I spinning my wheels by not playing up? That question has been broached more than neccesary here as the degenerate in me wants to take a chuck of those bucks and throw it at a sizable tourney (a Sunday Major or $50-$200 PLO8 MTT) but the realist in me knows that with two kids, a wife, and now three blogs to contribute to, actually playing poker takes a back seat to spending more time throwing new analogies and adjectives at each bad beat versus actually receiving those beats.

Good news to other Minnesota-based poker players who actually HAVE a bankroll after playing the Midwest Poker Classic that just concluded last week, and the starting today Fall Poker Classic at Canterbury Park . Phil Mackey and Bryan Mileski the co-owners of Minnesota Poker Magazine have set up the Minnesota State Poker Tour complete with qualifers and bracelet events in the state's best poker rooms starting with Canterbury Park on Decemeber 9th-14th

Check out the media release below for more information on this excellent opportunity to meet your fellow frozen state rounders on the indoor felts and hopefully trim a few bucks off them while walking away with a shiny piece of wrist jewelry:

Bracelet Events Have Arrived in Minnesota with Launch of Minnesota State Poker Tour

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – Minnesota Poker Magazine, LLC today announced the launch of the Minnesota State Poker Tour (MSPT), a series of six $1,000+$100 buy-in, deep stack Texas Hold’em tournaments to be held at six separate locations throughout Minnesota in 2010. The winner of each event will be awarded a customized diamond bracelet to go along with the first place cash prize. A “Tour Launch” bracelet event will be held at Canterbury Park from December 9-14, 2009.

TOUR LAUNCH (Bracelet Event)

Canterbury Park
Shakopee, MN
December 9-14, 2009

* Two-day Main Event begins on Sunday, December 13
SEASON 1 (Bracelet Events)*

Grand Casino Mille Lacs
Onamia, MN

Running Aces Harness Park
Columbus, MN
April 7-12

Northern Lights Casino
Walker, MN
June 9-13

Jackpot Junction
Morton, MN

Grand Casino Hinckley
Hinckley, MN

Canterbury Park
Shakopee, MN
December 8-13

* Subject to change

The MSPT Main Event structure is extremely player-friendly. Blinds will increase every 50 minutes and players will start with $15,000 in tournament chips.

$220+$30 buy-in qualifying satellites will be held in the week(s) leading up to MSPT main events. With these MSPT bracelet events, the prestige of poker in Minnesota will certainly be elevated to an entirely new level.

Minnesota Poker Magazine, owned by Bryan Mileski and Phil Mackey, is a monthly publication designed to shine a spotlight on one of America's up-and-coming poker hotbeds. Approximately 450,000 Minnesotans play poker on at least a semi-regular basis.

Mackey is a sports radio personality at KFAN in Minneapolis and also does various TV and writing work in the sports media world. He plays poker semi-professionally. Mileski also plays poker semi-professionally and has plenty of tournament experience under his belt, including cashes in World Series of Poker Circuit events, Caesers Mega Stack events, two Heartland Poker Tour final tables, and more.

For more information, visit

Thursday, October 08, 2009

The Outgoing Plumber

Jerry came by yesterday.

He held an oversized work belt around his Rio World buffet-sized waist that sort-of shifted with each labored step. A kind yet saddened smile of someone working for the man versus getting a true paycheck of a professional plumber. He spoke softly while resting the clipboard on top of the stretched Roto-Rooter uniform of jotted down actions he would take upon our clogged water lines. His handshake was firm as the hand dwarfed my own feeling calloused from years of hauling the various seemingly heavy equipment up and down the steps of homeowners who had no choice but to bend over the knee of a stuck piece of PVC tubing and leave a blank check.

Houses do not run well without flowing water unless your the Ingalls family.

While Jerry wrote down a number that I was comfortable with on the order form filled out in triplicates, I solemnly signed away $400 that was necessary to get the boy back into his bedroom without fear of slogging though backed up sewage on the way upstairs. The corporate plumber dig thru the muck that could have left by the previous owner of the home who built the place back in the 70s but allowed time and divorce to rot away some features that our family have brought back. Then again, my daughter's amusement with watching a half roll of squeezable Charmin swirl down the porcelain whirlpool with each flush was a more likely suspect.

When asked about future clogs after his seemingly professional job (and expensive 1.5 hours of work), Jerry just shrugged and tried to come up with a sell up to various company sold product descriptions and "add-on" services but instead stuck with pointing his workmen fingers at the glossy brochure laced with "yeps" and head nods. One thing about living with a hearing disability has forced me to do over the years (and its a BIG thing while playing live poker) is to pay close attention to non-verbal clues. Granted my bionic ears allow to hear more words and cute "Go Mi-Kings!" from my little cheerleader, I still find myself pouring over hand and eye, shoulders, stance, feet, and face movements as if I was a human lie detector.

From my brief moments speaking with Jerry, I could tell he wasn't comfortable trying to up-sell me on additional products that he was not full knowledgable about yet could perform if I opted to allow the stammering description. Granted, I'm sure he an honest guy as he gave no tells of being a corporate huckster looking to make a bonus for selling twenty gallons of Super Industrial Drain-B-Gone, just very careful about trying to cross-over into salesmen territory as I peppered the first questions at him I'd had about my piping since getting the snip.


His out was "someone will probably call you about getting a camera down there to see if there's a bigger problem beyond the 25 feet I cleared". The cue was to let Jerry off the hook as me and the wife flushed the toilets at the same time while running bathtub water and nary a drop hit the laundry room floor. Job complete, let the man go enjoy the evening lineup on CMT and wait for the dreaded sales call.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Backed-Up Victory

While watching the incredible game on TBS (in HD of course, truly a gift to watch sports again) and reading Otis' short fiction story on a booze-runner in South Carolina (go read about Lettuce and Libertyville here, I suggest having a beer or slow high ball glass with your favorite alcohol neat while reading to soak it in) while the see-saw battle between the Minnesota Twins and Detroit Lions Tigers played to a bouncing single between first and second base with Carlos "I'm too fast for these shoes" Gomez scoring well ahead of the throw, my wife who was supposed to be leaving for a short night work shift was yelling from the basement...

... which had a bit water on the floor

Several months ago my princess of a daughter, cute, funny, smile that makes you melt, decided the toilet was a solid choice to drop her plastic Happy Meal toy from McDonald's (OMG THERE'S MONOPOLY TO PLAY GO NOW GET FAT FOR THE PURSUIT OF BOARDWALK!!!!). Flushing sometimes gave a groan of dropping out a 42oz Porterhouse steak the next day, but the pipes seem to make peace with the 14 cent toy.

Until last night.

When the carpeting in the laundry room got soaked as we shop-vac'd our little hearts out as the sewage backed up in the adjacent shower and washer, dumping out said contents with rain beating down outside. Fun. Taking a verbal beating from a frantic wife while she's supposed to be serving senior citizens sugar free cookies and strong coffee at a virtual tour of lower Zimbabwe, there was the throwing out of the carpeting in the mud while it held a lovely stuck on scent of mystery liquids to its duPont microfabrics.

Instead of a point and laugh post at the Tiggers excellent job of reviving the 2007 Mets, or describing Favregasm II with Jared Allen co-staring as the stunt dick to beat down that colander-like Packers front line and give Aaron Rodgers (who I thought was the better quarterback that night considering the .4 seconds he was given to throw the ball when he wasn't on his back) another beat-down, you get a very short story of where my "extra" paycheck will be going this month.

Cuteness: I got a "sowwy daddy" this morning (I was ready to buy that camcorder this weekend to record stuff like that but not now...)

Maybe Roto-Rooter has a preschooler apology discount they can slide over to the parents while the Happy Meal toy gets extracted to the tune of a two-week paycheck.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Sensory Overflu

The flu shot was supposed to be taken day, and guess who's running a fever? Wyatt currently is taking an Avatar/Fairly Oddparents/Spongebob Squarepants while I'm in flannel PJ bottoms (Yes, Jen I wear pants while being a parent versus an online poker reporter) shuttling apple juice and cold packs to the ill one.

Bucky was in town for the annual border battle between the Gophers and Badgers. As the score from TCF Stadium showed, the Paul Bunyan Ax made its way back across to cheesehead land where it will remain tainted by Wisconsinites for the next year. Hats off to thee Badger running game as they pummeled the front four chewing up clock time as the Weber to Decker was left with a few precious minutes to work with and almost made a come back in the closing minute only down by a field goal.

Normally we are a State of Hockey:

(RSS readers click through to see the video, I've actually played skated in the three arenas they show)

But, for the next two nights Minnesotan sport fans are getting treated to something unseen since the Homer Hankies lined Hennipin Avenue after Jack Morris' one-for-the-ages 10 shutout innings in winning Game Seven of the 1991 World Series.

Tonight starts off with Favregasm II: The Double Penetration.

This one has much on the line. NFC Central division leader, the pride wars at the local bars since believe it or not Viking fans are outnumbered many times while downing $2 pints of MGD and Miller Lite while taking in some hot wings and the game on one of 27 newly installed 1080 dpi HD monitors. Yes, around here its not uncommon to see people catch the virus of a Green and Gold jersey and up until two years ago 85% of them not sporting a Mark Churma or Desmond Howard sweater, would have their beloved number four resting over their shoulders.

That all changed with bolting to the Jets last season and commiting the cardinal sin that Darren Sharpier and Ryan Longwell made several years ago by donning the Purple. Brett Favre will be coming out of the home team's tunnel for the second time in his career at the Metrodome which spans 18 games if my monkey math is correct. Will the Favre magic (ok, just saying his name turns my stomach, luckily there's applewood smoked bacon to quell such feelings), turn the tide for this team, latching on even more bandwagoners or will they dive off the Titanic if the Gunslinger doesn't holster his sidearms this evening and let the Purple Jesus and Taylor punish a fairly weak front line of the Packers.

From a lifelong Vikings fan, I'm happy he's here, I'm happy there's excitement behind this team, and win or lose tonight I'll still be happy with the direction this team is going. But, please its not FAVRE vs. the Packers as noted by the ratings sluts at ESPN during the overplayed promos this week. They are a team, they've won with their defense for the past several years and will continue to rely on the massive front four along with should-have-been All Pro E.J. Henderson at linebacker and Winfield in the backfield. They have the most exciting running back in the league for the past three seasons, Purple Jesus wants to hurt you...

... if you can catch him

The other side is the bet. Always the bet with The Wife. This year the stakes got raised thanks to the man who retired and unretired more than The Road Warriors, Tito Santana, Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka, and Brett "The Hitman" Hart combined. To the loser, this year will receive a Favre jersey of the opposite team's colors. Yes, I'm more than happy to plug some cash into the Vikings economy if it means watching The Wife dance around in Purple once again during NFL Sunday.

May the best Favre win.

Tomorrow Twinkies Take Two from the Tiggers and the Rollerdome rocks for baseball at least one more time.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Weekend Minnesota Sports Viewings

Gophers vs. Wisconsin for the Paul Bunyon Ax starting at Noon. The new TCF Bank stadium doesn't suck, the weather however is going to be cold and wet not the 80s and sunny we've been enjoying for the past month.

Twins vs. The Greinkes somehow the team has manage to spur playoff hopes after splitting the crucial series last week. With the 2009 Cy Young award winner on the hill today for the Royals, those hopes will most likely end up in the trash like a discarded malt cup stick.

Black Dynamo vs. FC Red MG: this one the upstart midfielder Wyatt will try to neutralize the Swedish exchange student, Kjell, with the floppy blonde bowl cut hair and slick cross-overs while 3'7" Ethan leds a powerful offense built on speed. Played on the cold pitch of Rush Creek Elementary, the elements will come into play as the kids get their first taste of playing sports in fall Minnesotan weather as parents strive for perfectly cut orange wedges and fruit snacks in the shape of popular movies on the sidelines.

Vikes vs. Packers (Monday): If you've turned on a TV in the last week there's nothing more to be said about this one. Please keep the Brett Favre references to a minimum because after seeing the rube crew at Buffalo Wild Wings listening to a live broadcast of the Paul Allen on KFAN, fan here in Purple country are an undefined excited adjective about this game.

If you need to know what this Volleyball player is signaling she will be blocking the cross hits while her similarly hot assed partner should take the line spike. Or she'd like to get some head from two guys during the next time out. I'll let you decide.