Tuesday, January 17, 2006

"I'm the Baltic Avenue of poker blogs."
Tuscaloosa Johnny, from Poker Nation, to me at the table

Quick update.

I'm back from Tunica, and yes, it was a blast. I was lucky enough to be able to hang out with Maudie and Johnny from the above blog. Hell, as a bonus, I even got to chat with Poker Intelligentsia, Amy Calistri, as she was covering all the major tourney events. She was nice and lied and said she loves this poker blog.

Because it was a spur-of-the-moment trip, I really had no expectations. I simply want to play more tournaments this year - something I have little experience in. My only plan was to enter the $1500 NL WSOP circuit event on Saturday.

I arrived very late Thursday night. Threw my bags in my room and ran to the poker room, not intending to play, but wanting to check it out. I was both starving and thirsty for booze. But there was one seat open in a $230 winner take all SNG so I grabbed it. And ordered a flurry of drinks. Ended up heads up with a pro from New Jersey. We were evenly stacked so we chopped. A nice beginning - only in Tunica for an hour and a half and already up over a grand. A loose and profitable cash game session was next before finally grabbing some food and crashing.

Maudie arrived the next day and we played some poker before jumping in the $200 multi-table second chance cash tourney held every day at 5. First place was typically around 15k each day. Tuscaloosa Johnny came over from the Gold Strike and it was great to finally meet this true Southern Gentleman.

Back in the day, we had talked when he was wrestling with quitting his job as a newspaper reporter to follow his dream of traveling around the country to play poker and hopefully write a book from his experiences. Suffice to say, that's what he's been doing for over seven months now. Because he's a fine writer and poker player, I highly recommend his poker blog and archives.

Anyway, I was the first of us three knocked out. I truly played awful.

I ended up drinking in the main bar of the casino late that night, Maudie and Johnny having departed for some well-deserved sleep.

I ended up having my wallet stolen by a very nice brother and sister team.
Fuck me. Just another example of the poor reads I was making that evening.

Talk about -EV. Thankfully (heh), I only got nicked for $1400 and not the bulk of what I had brought with me. Plus, my lammers were intact. But regardless, it hurt to be considered an easy mark.

It was a battle of epic proportions to get back into my hotel room with no key, ID, or credit cards. Hours & hours of good clean drunken fun.

Suffice to say, I missed the noon start of the Saturday NL tourney.

Maudie, Johnny and I hung out at the bar during the afternoon before heading to the tables. We had a great time playing drunken 4.8 and ultimately ended up breaking the table with our non-stop straddles and hands played in the dark. I yanked a 40 BB win, which was good karma after being purloined the evening before. Mostly I had fun good-naturedly heckling Johnny for his southern-fried rock n roll in his Ipod and I went on tilt when I saw Maudie listening to Over-The-Rhine, a long-time, local Cincinnati band. She has some fine taste.

The next day, Maudie and I jumped in her cool VW bug and checked out the other Tunica poker rooms, including the Gold Strike and Binions. Because of the World Poker Open tourney at the Gold Strike, there were plenty of poker celebs everywhere. I witnessed Maudie's knees buckling when Irishman, Andrew Black, strolled past us to take a call on his cell. Sammy Farha was far shorter than I expected.

I'm resisting the easy joke here.

We decided to return to the Grand and play some more poker. Maudie started crushing a 4.8 table as I played in the 5.00 second chance tourney again. This time I built a big stack and lasted till the third hour when my Big Slick didn't improve versus pocket fours. At least I was able to sell my lammers to an expansive cowboy on my right.

All three of us intrepid poker bloggers decided to play in a $65 SNG, which ended up with Johnny and I at the end. We did a save and then he outplayed me for the extra money. I made some of it back in Roshambo.

On to an early morning 10.20 action table. Probably the juiciest table I had all weekend. I cashed out early, around 2am, a few hundred up while Johnny was riding a rush and crushing some local gamblers.

Despite being booked till later in the week, I decided to leave on Monday. Maudie and I met for breakfast in her posh hotel lobby before motoring down the highway back home.

Whew. Thanks again to Maudie for the great time and conversations. And to Johnny for putting up with my shenanigans & hanging out with us. Again, I can't do this trip justice in this silly poker blog. Twas truly a tremendous time with superb people and I was bummed to leave although I'm fantasizing at heading back in a few days.

Those fucknuts who stole my wallet have been hitting all over Memphis with my credit cards.
Eleven different places thus far. What a mess.

One final thought. Traveling with a 60 gig IPod truly freaking rules. I was impressed with the quality of podcasts out there.

I'll be back soon with a regular post.

Addendum: a buddy told me that in lieu of the above post, I should have just written:


i lost my wallet. good thing i won.
love, iggy

ps maudie is teh kewl



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