Monday, July 09, 2007

Today It Was A Good Day

I think that was my longest self imposed blogging vacation I’ve taken since the great Alberta Bankroll Clipper of aught five. Even then I tried to hammer away “I lose again” posts night after night as the @#%!%@ and !$!#%#%#$^ comments piled up when my juicy bankroll kept taking hits like Pauly and Change100 in an Amsterdam hash house.

Three words that make sleeping a wee uncomfortable when the humidity percentage and temperature in Minnesota are above 90: No Air Conditioning

Cabins are like that and to be expected but when the ice cubes in my Cap’n Cokes disappear faster then I can make the sweet nectar go down my throat its time to call out Mother Nature for being an unforgiving bitch. No one likes a warm drink that’s supposed to be served cold. At least the Chimay stayed cool enough Saturday night to cap off another enjoyable time up north minus the thirty pounds of sweat that leaked from my internet poker site t-shirt thru the floorboards of the deck.

Back to Vegas for one more day as your dejected and rejected hero was exiting the poker tent in the back of the Rio while remembering yet another line from Rounders as Mike McD was dropping off cargo for a small market talking about “taking a shot and missing”. Its true. No one remembers those who take their shots and miss, they don’t end up with their mugs splashed on major blogging sites with wide smiles about the “hometown” champ taking down a five to six figure score for the good guys. But, I’m not humping a job I don’t want, nor am I regretful for the way the cards laid on the table as I busted out. If anything, it fueled my desire to return next year if Harrah’s keep this big ball of yarn called the World Series of Poker together and lays out my preferred variation of poker again. Grind the cash games, hit a tourney score, or hit a seven card straight flush in PAI GOW, whatever it takes for me to sit next to Joe Hachem and turbo mullet dude while seeing Pauly, Otis, Change100, CC, Spaceman, and everyone covering these carnival games under the big top at the Rio next June/July.

I want to go back, and next time come back with more then a story.

On the last day me and Spaceman met up with Speaker at the Tilted Kilt due to their exquisite chicken strips, hot waitresses that can hold a conversation using multi-syllable words, and an array of beers that you don’t find at a townie bar in Minnesota (unless you like 15 variations of Schmidt or Blatz). After carefully crafted plans were set, the Venetian would be our last flay into the Vegas poker trip for me and Speaker, as Spaceman had a little thing with Bluff that kept him in Vegas for a couple more weeks while motoring around in a PT Cruiser not designed for those who shop at the local big and tall store. Would it hurt some at Chrysler to add a few inches to the roof so the static electricity in my head didn’t short out every light in the Venetian parking lot?

The run-walk scoot was used to get to the poker room quickly, this method is favored by women who shouldn’t wear spandex yet do to my annoyance while exercising, due to the daily tourney starting in under double digit minutes. After swaddling across a sea of pretty people we reached the poker room where I’d take my second shot of the trip.

$8/$16 Mixed Game

I’m dead money in a NLHE tourney, but a mixed game has my interest and an open seat. Why blow $185 when you can lose $400! But, it would last me all night as this was an eye-opener to the live game I’ve wanted to play since I started shying away from playing all hold em all the time.

The lineup: Omaha 8 or Better, Razz, Stud, Stud 8 or Better, A-5 Triple Draw, 2-7 Triple Draw, and Badugi

Dealer, do you have one of those handy card charts you sell in the gift shop for people who don’t know how to play these games? A rack was $400 not $100 as they used $4 chips and $1 antes for the Stud games. The action was fairly high, especially with the drunken Wisconsin native not named Steve on my right. He reeked action like Grubby on an eleven o’clock run to cash in five different slot casino comps before they expired at midnight. KQ8T showing in Razz on sixth street? No problem, RAISE IT UP! Guess he didn’t see the game change while complaining about the worst tasting chicken strips ever (I even got to sample them, not horrible with honey mustard). The camaraderie amongst the table was high despite the variance in age, height, gender, weight, color, and geographic location. It felt like the blogger tables at the MGM Grand during the various WPBT tourneys except the denomination of chips and inside jokes about the beloved seven-deuce offsuit.

But, between me and Spaceman who took over for a couple of Razz and Badugi hands, my stack was left at $28 which I took off the table before throwing it away while waving goodbye to the improbably stacked waitresses that defied every physics class I ever attended with her watermelon sized boobs and steams of beauty cut high enough to make a chastened priest blush with every Cap’n Coke served. Blinders, of the newly minted Fantasy Sports Live website, was still plugging away with a medium sized stack late in the tourney with three to the money as me and Spaceman decided to turn my meager $28 to $100 with a little –EV donk-a-lympics.

One bet on the field line in Craps, if won, one hand of PAI GOW!!

The field bet took a little wrangling as I stepped up to table with gentlemen eye-fucking the 20 year younger blondes they were attached to, and got shushed away by some no-neck in a tux telling me it was a private table. Nice buzz kill asshole.

But, the next table welcomed my scraps with open arms as Steve Perry sang loud enough to knock the two cubes so they came to rest on one and two, PAY THE FIELD! $56, lets play some PAI GOW! $50 minimum bet? Usually the signs detour low rollers like myself as much as the “Salon” high roller baccarat games with denomination chips that would pay off my house with one natural nine for the player. We were men on a mission, and the lovely asian dealer laid out a new spread just for us as I placed $50 into the betting circle, $5 for the bonus, and $1 because she looked lonely and needed the $3K if I hit the 7-card straight flush. Hmmmm… an ace, another ace, a jack, another jack, but no boat. Aces over jacks ma’am, one time please.

She doesn’t PAI GOW so I didn’t get to wake the grumpy high rollers with a ceiling rattling yell better left for the $5 tables, but I walked away with my one chip of high society. Down $300 for the visit to the Venetian but hoping back into the silver PT Cruiser with my smile intact after another quick glance at those walking bowling balls carrying alcoholic beverages.

We capped the night with the nocturnal Otis (fresh off a grumbling defeat at the poker tables) and $10 PAI GOW back at the Gold Coast where making the ice queen pit boss proved to be fun as my Cap’n Coke count got further and further lost with every cigarette I annoying borrowed into the single hours of the morning. Is it hokey that I “felt alive” being surrounded by friends and degenerate of all sorts over a card game designed to eventually empty my pockets? I was a little too loud, but I didn’t care, I was happy and I knew it, so I clapped my hands and shouted PAI GOW for all to hear.

Thanks for dropping by, now if anyone is up for getting together to put the World Pai Gow Blogger Tour on the map of activities during our next meet sometime in December, I have my bonus bet and annoying list of things to say to the dealers/pit bosses ready.

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