October 31, 2002

Halloween – Fright night! The only players that came in dressed in Fright Night Garb were Todd B. and his wife, and Jennifer and her husband. Jennifer looked like a little 10 year old from the Munster TV series. They didn’t come to play and didn’t stay…must have been at a party.

I had a run in with Cuckoo…not at the table so a little background is needed here. Kassem AKA Freddie D., plays high limit in our room and has since the Mirage days. I used to find it quite frightening when I approached a high limit game and Freddie was in the game. Not anymore and not for a few years. Freddie is referenced in other posts here and he also took 3rd place in the Bellagio Five Diamond World Poker Tour Tournament.

I dealt to Freddie in a $400-$800 7 Card Stud game the other night and he was brutalized by the deck…low card, low card, low card. He won two pots when he went all in. He finally went all in with his last $800 – Morad caught 6-6-6 showing – but the pot was huge and if Freddie caught, he would win. Freddie had the best hand until 6th Street and lost the hand. He never flinched, winced, or cringed. He simply said, “Nice hand,” as he left the game. I really admire his attitude and his play.

Cuckoo on the other hand has been running bad and his attitude sucks. He threw the cards into the rack a few nights ago when he lost a hand. I ignored the move and continued to deal. Another time he threw his cards against the rail. Fine, I just don’t want to try to defend myself from flying missiles when I deal.

Much later I passed Cuckoo in the Sports Book and said, “Grouch!”

He said he wasn’t a grouch when he wasn’t playing and then I get in the box and deal him off.

I told him I couldn’t change it and he laughed and gave me a ‘high 5’ and said he knew that. All was well.

Then (present) I made the mistake of seeing him and Freddie in the Sports Book together. I’m so weird. I believe in being truthful and giving someone a compliment plays right into that scenario. Tell people when they are cool, good, kind, wonderful, and neat. They shouldn’t only have to hear the down side of their behavior.

I stopped and asked Cuckoo if he’d gotten any sleep because the last time I saw him, he’d been up for 30 hours.

He said, “Yes.”

I turned to Freddie and said, “You are the classiest player.”

Freddie told me thank you and Cuckoo went off on me.

“You’re saying I’m an asshole.”

“No. I didn’t say that at all.”

“Well you shouldn’t say anything.”

Me, “I shouldn’t tell Freddie that he’s a classy player?”

“NO! You have no idea what we go through.”

Me, “I play poker.”

Cuckoo with a straight forward, I don’t believe you know what you’re talking about, barked, “You don’t play poker!”

Me, “Ok, I don’t.”

Cuckoo, “You have no idea what we go through.”

Me, “You have no idea what I go through.”

Cuckoo, “We are not talking about life, life is good. We are talking about poker.”

No arguing with this guy…he’s having a rough time and nothing I say will change it. But I still tried. “Well, have you ever watched Freddie play?”

Cuckoo, “You shouldn’t say anything. You shouldn’t even bring this up in front of me…”

As I walked away, “I wanted to compliment Freddie. If you take it any other way…Sorry.”

Nothing more to be said about this…thank heaven I’m not trapped inside with him because I couldn’t stand that downward spiral.