Sunday, December 16, 2007

I'm still a little bummed that Vegas is in the rear view mirror. Especially after reading all the fantastic trip reports.

Summer seems so far away.

But hell, I've got the poker itch something fierce again, so there's a solid takeaway. I even managed to play some late night drunken poker blogger tables on Full Tilt over the weekend.

I've gotta remember to play in the Tournament of Champions tourney this week since I won the second event in what seems like a long, long time ago. I have no aspirations of winning this thing and so I'm excited to find out what lucky blogger gets to represent us in the Aussie Millions. It's a win - win situation.

I finished Johnny Hughes poker novel over the weekend and loved it. If you want to get inside the head of a grinder, this is one for you. Seriously, I highly recommend it - head on over to Amazon and support this living legend by buying his book.

And speaking of my hero, Johnny sent over an email that he gave me permission to post. Enjoy:


Whores and Rumors of Whores

Hey, Iggy. That blogger's gang of yours is way north of swell. A real swell mob. Very brainy, very funny, The semi-permanent group leaning on the Geisha Bar and each other had a natural scientist's curiosity about the abundant winter crop of lower-class whores. They discussed their cartoonish attire, sweet-sour aroma, not well planned tattoos, creative sales pitches, price elasticity, elasticity, and the reasoning behind their lies. Since they are making up age, home town, name, etc., you get a good read. Whores are very trustworthy when it comes to very small drug purchases where you front no money. They can't be cops and whores, even in Las Vegas. I'd go by the Geisha Bar, tell a bad-beat story or three, then be gone for five or six hours. When I came back at any time day or night, drunk people would be going for a marathon record and talking about or with the whores, standing in the exact same locations. Impressive. Still, no one went up to the trick room? Right? Once when the hard old West Texas gamblers caught me coming down with a black gal that looked as gaudy as Laredo, I told them she was teaching me all the words to, "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot." It was a weed thing.

Here's another excerpt from my novel that addresses the issue of trusting the strangers one meets in Las Vegas.

Texas Poker Wisdom, a novel, by Johnny Hughes, an excerpt

As he walked by the bar in the Golden Nugget, Dylan caught the eye of Molly June Golihugh who was sitting on the corner stool sucking on a lime.

“I can tell you are a fine Southern boy, am I right?” she cooed like a dove. Dylan volunteered that he was from Texas, demonstrating just the appropriate amount of pride. Molly June was about eight pounds and a couple of crooked teeth away from being Miss America material. The first word she had ever learned was pretty. She had on a white dress with red polka dots the size of golf ball size hail and a pair of red, dice ear rings. There was a large floppy straw hat perched on the back of her head. Molly wanted Matt to join her for a rum and coke.

“See this Ace bandage on my ankle?” Thus began Molly’s heart tugging tale of woe. Now a tale of woe from a tarnished angel in distress is a most horrible sound for a Texas gambler’s ears. Most especially in Las Vegas. It is kind of like a pistol cocking or a door being kicked in or nearby screeching brakes or a tornado on your block. Dylan should have known that.

There is an old saying, “I never met a gambler who wouldn’t if he can, help a widow or an orphan or an unfortunate man.” There is something about the Las Vegas valley that has people looking for a chance to take a chance. New Age folks think Sedona and Santa Fe might, just might, make you goofy—energy forces and all. Gamblers know for sure Las Vegas makes you goofy. No ifs, ands, or buts about it.

Mormons were the first white settlers to come to the valley in 1853. Las Vegas means “the Meadows” in Spanish. They came to stop the Paiute Indians from gambling on foot races, throwing rocks, and rolling bones. The Mormons gave up in five years only to re-surface dealing very hard drugs to Howard Hughes in the post mob days. The desert rats, silver miners, Mafia boys, and the Teamster’s were all known to be a little soft when it came to a bee-you-ti-full dame with a well rehearsed and acted out sad story.

Samson, Hamlet, King David, Bugsy Seigel, Eddie Fisher, Ghengis Khan, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and the old guy who married Anna Nicole Smith all listened to some lyrical lady’s song of woe. Ben Affleck, Dylan’s new hero, had played unlucky with J. Lo. Or maybe not.

“We came out here on this chartered bus tour,” Molly said. “It was all the very top twirlers from North Georgia. I twisted my ankle doing a show at the Convention Center. It’s just gonna flat ruin my twirling career. Miss Halsey, she’s our advisor, just bawled and bawled. She cried a whole lot more than I did. I’m sipping just a little bit of rum and coke for the pain. I don’t want to get too drunk. Momma’s wiring me the money to fly home tomorrow. I fell down in front of all those people. Oh, Lordy. I was so embarrassed that I didn’t even feel the pain. My ankle might be broken. It’s the end of the line for my twirling career. I was gonna turn professional. That’s just a far away dream now. You bought me one. I’m buying you one.”

The knee on Molly’s good leg was touching Dylan’s knee and her forearm was touching his. The bartender was Irma from Vietnam. “Good luck, baby,” she said. Dylan and Molly June agreed it would be a dynamite idea if they went up to his room where she could “lay down a little while.” Dylan actually thought it was his idea. The girl was good. She took Dylan’s arm and leaned on him for support as they walked through the casino to the gift shop. Walking through the fanciest, gaudiest carpet joint in downtown Las Vegas, Dylan was mostly aware of Molly June’s ample breasts. They bought a pint of Bacardi light rum, five cans of Coca-Cola, two packages of peanut butter and crackers, a small bottle of Listerine, and a long-stem, dark red silk rose.

Name tags on all casino workers give their name and where they are from.
Wanda from Hong Kong wished them “Good luck.”

The security guard that checked Dylan’s key to let him on the elevator was Gerald from Phoenix. He wished them, “Good luck.”

Molly June said the canned cokes were cold enough. They wouldn’t need any ice. She fixed them a drink. Dylan was telling her how his very best friend in Stephenville had been a twirler as had his very best friend at Tarleton State. He told her of the hundreds of twirlers who come to Texas Tech in the summers for advanced Graduate School training. He said twirling is the national sport in Texas. She told him he was “cute as a bug in a rug.”

Dylan barely had time to set his drink on the dresser before he passed out. Molly June had slipped Rohypnol AKA the date rape drug into his drink. She’d had practice. He didn’t wake back up until five hours later. He still had on his pearl buttoned black cowboy shirt, Levis, and ostrich skin boots. His half empty rum and coke was sitting on the dresser. Next to it was an Ace bandage and a silk red rose. The contents of his suit case were spread out on the floor. Dylan sat on the bed and looked all around. His head was groggy. It was if he had to jump start his memory. He reached down in both front pockets at once. Nothing there but plenty of room for his hands. Dylan was rapidly going through the stages: grief, realization, denial, anger, and acceptance. Ten dimes, gone. www.JohnnyHughes.com

All Content Copyright Iggy 2003-2007
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