Friday, April 29, 2005

I hit the room tonight with the intent of meeting my friend, Greg, for a brief visit before work and in time to sign the E/O Play list before the line is drawn…that’s at 6:45. I made it in plenty of time and spent about 20 minutes visiting with Greg in the quiet area off the Sport’s Book which is an employee’s area. Greg deals at Harrahs and is one my Pan playing, hiking buddies…although work has gotten in the way of both lately.

I hit the room at 7 p.m. donned my dealer’s apron and name tag and dealt three games. Break time. When I returned from break I was out to play but couldn’t E/O. I was second on the E/O list and really wanted to hit the night air and leave the poker room behind but it just wasn’t to be until around 1:00 a.m. I planted my tush in a $4-8 H game and basically never won a pot.

I did split one that was good sized but only one person was trapped in the middle and it didn’t begin to cover my losses. Hey…I can’t beat A-Q with A-K suited, nor can I beat J-7 Off with A-10 Off when the flop comes A-J-3 – nothing on the Turn – J on the River. I managed to run K-Q into chip hell when the Flop came K-Q-7 and the other player had 7-7. Then it’s sit and fold for three weeks…never folding a winner because nothing I fold ever comes on the board. I know it happens all the time. Only problem is it’s been happening to me for about a year and a half. I used to live to play poker and now I can barely stand to look at two cards…in anyone’s hand. But I won’t dwell on that. Everything changes and I hate whiners so on to room happenings and poker.

On Thursday night I dealt a little $4-8 H game in which the player in the 5s said she had asked the previous dealer for a set-up but they never got one. We were back in the corner, in a section that’s extremely difficult to be heard from and I belted out, “Set-up, Table X.”

She said something to the effect that I could be heard everywhere and I started laughing. “That’s from raising three sons by myself.”

She then told me I wouldn’t get a set-up since no one had replied. I said, “Yes I will, I always get what I want.”

Her eyebrows went up and she said, “It must be nice.”

I replied, “It’s easy…I don’t want much.”

That’s the key. I want the real things in life, the things that are simple and make life so wonderful. And yes…I dream. I dream of things I want in the future and even though some of them are unrealistic dreams, I still dream them because I believe they can happen and if I don’t dream them there is no floorplan or blueprint. And without that construction never starts.

Today my dream is a dream for health and wellness for everyone in the world, world peace, and the warm comfort of “I love you” shared with people and family close to me.

And for a neverending river of people walking through the door to get on the list…

Thursday, April 28, 2005

On my way in to work last night, I sang Happy Birthday into my cell phone as my baby put his phone up to his baby’s ear…my one and only grandson was celebrating his first birthday. He’s cute and sweet and cuddly beyond belief…he’s a real Riot. Yup, that’s his name, Riot!

And that’s the way my night at work was, a real riot. By 5:20, I was seated on Table 7 in the new room. I asked Doug (cardroom manager) and two supervisors if they would send the first table of players in from the Poker Pit to my table so I could deal the first hand in the new room and for just a minute or some nonsensical amount of time, I thought I would have the honor. I got the first table of players but they were part of the daily tournament and they were going on a 15 minute break. POOOP!

The next table of players were in the tournament also, they went to Table 6. Right out of the blue, before the room was even officially open, the 4s knocked a full cup of coffee and cream over onto the table, it ran to the Shuffle Master, and in general made a hell-uv-a mess. Tom, the dealer on 6 spent at least 10 minutes with wet and dry towels trying to clean up the mess while the table was on break.

The first hand was dealt on Table 36 by Bev. I believe it was a $4-8 H game. I’m not resentful or jealous, just kind of hoping…kind of?

When the tournament resumed, the first hand I dealt produced A-A for the 6s. He sent another player home for the night when the other player raised all-in and then showed A-2 Off.

At 6:00ish, Doug announced the opening of Bellagio’s new room and received a huge round of applause from everyone.

The two table, private salon is referred to as The Bobby Baldwin Room and the kids that play the biggest game in town were there in full swing.

The room filled up. I believe we had 32-33 games running when we were at max. When midnight rolled around, and Wynn was opening, we didn’t have a mass exodus, we had games – lots of them. And when I left at 3 a.m., there were still 16 games running.

The poker room is truly a work of art. The colors, lighting, wall coverings, pictures, carpet – everything enhances the spectacular beauty of what I believe is possibly the most beautiful poker room in the world. There are a few glitches that will be worked out and the office isn’t set up and functional yet but it’s on the way. Shuffle Masters are installed in all the tables. There are still traffic problems and not a lot of room between the tables in some areas, hopefully that will iron out and be resolved soon.

April 27th, 2005 – a date to remember. Happy Birthday, Riot – in celebrating your first year of life! Happy Birthday, Bellagio Poker Room – in celebrating your opening and continual effort to improve and provide poker for the world!

This is Riot when he got his ‘2-3’ busted off by an idiot tourist that had no clue how to play the game.


I told Riot not to worry, if the ‘tourist’ stayed long enough…

The Room Remodel is done and Riot has a birthday

Hello new home! Tonight I’m going in at 5 p.m. to help start the transition from the Poker Pit to my new home…Bellagio’s Poker Room. I might even end up being the first person to deal the first hand in the new room. That would be like ultra sweet…all kinds of sweet with more sweet piled on top of sweet. Yummy.

From what I understand, dealers will be in the room, waiting at tables for players to come from games in the Poker Pit. As the players come in to take their seats, the games in the Poker Pit will close and the games in the room will begin…let the games begin. YIPPEE!

I’ve listened to the ‘natter natter’ of players stating that we are trying to compete with Wynn and as soon as Wynn opens, we will lose our business and to that I say, “BULLSHIT!”

Competition is healthy and good for all industries but we aren’t competing with Wynn for the poker business…they are competing with us. We aren’t going to lose our games or sit dead or go dark. We are the leader of the poker world in Vegas and one of the best poker rooms in the world for live and tournament action. We aren’t going any direction other than UP! So come in and join us.


The live poker scene. I hit a $4-8 H game in which I thought I was dealing to a high limit asshole that went broke somewhere in Hades and was chewed up and spit out of the core of Pain and Agony Done Went Broke to spend his time with mortals instead of the Nether Spirits that never find peace.

He was in the 9s, had chips in front of him, agitated and crabbing over the slow play of the players in the game, and jumping in and out of his seat like he’d been shot in the butt with rock salt.

The kids in this game…literally, kids, were jawing and having fun, some of them green as hell and had no idea what they were doing but they were having fun. The 6s folded his hand to a check. I did what I always do, “It’s a courtesy to check, never let them know what you’re going to do until you’re facing a bet.”

He didn’t get it. He folded to a check again on the next hand. I told him he should check because folding to a check was a tell on his play and he just gave up the protection of another player in the hand. The 9s went butt brain idiot on me and told me not to tell the 6s how to play his hand.
I said I wasn’t telling him how to play his hand, I was explaining poker etiquette.

The 9s snorted something like, “And you know how to be rude too!”

That left three players in the hand, including the 9s. Off comes the Turn and the 9s folded, the 10s checked, and the 3s bet putting the 10s at the mercy of the non protection thing I was just talking about. I started to say something to the 9s about it when he grabbed up his chips and raced off to a table transfer.

I sort of snorted, “Gee…the resident pro just left.”

The whole table took off on what a total asshole he was. But don’t worry, he was waiting just a few tables ahead in my line-up. When I hit that game, he was in the 5s. I stood behind the dealer I was tapping out. As she pushed him a pot, he said, “Don’t worry about it. I’m a dealer too. I know what it’s like.”

WTF???? Why on God’s little Earth and green felt tops can someone be a dealer and act like that?

I sat down. I dealt the first few hands and at one point, I gave the 5s direct, colder than a well digger’s ass, eye contact. He looked at me, I looked at him. I wanted to knock him off his chair.
He won a big pot and threw me a $4 toke, explaining that he didn’t normally tip that much but it was in the form of apologizing. He went on to explain that he couldn’t believe how young the kids were in that game and he must be getting old…he had no patience for them and he thought he was better off leaving the game than being ‘pissy’. NO SHIT!

I asked him where he worked. The Sahara. I made a mental note never to go there. Why would I want to play in someone’s game that makes my time in the box miserable? I don’t want to play in his game and act like a Jack-a-low because that is a reflection on me.

Come on…figure it out! Poker is changing. The tight lipped, ‘I’m going to die if I don’t win this hand jackass’ that knows everything, and does this for a living is a dinosaur. If you can’t adapt, you ain’t going to survive in today’s world of players that are running hell bent to jump into the action. That means as a dealer and a player. Get a grip, take a look, test the wind, go with the flow…or get left behind.

Get ready for monumental changes at PokerWorks.Com. A new interface, a bold exchange, new ideas, new thoughts, and tons of information. Everything is changing. Check back often.

A run-in with Devilfish, Herschel loves me, Sam G Lips off

I had this organized, little list, tucked neatly away in my brain, of all the things I would accomplish on my days off…but I had a visitor that screwed up my whole yard work plan. Rapping, tapping, shredding, and ripping through everything. Hello, Wind! Did you miss me? I haven’t missed you but then it’s hard to miss something that never goes away. Continue reading A run-in with Devilfish, Herschel loves me, Sam G Lips off

Friday, April 22, 2005

Bellagio is kicking off a daily tournament, starting today. The tournaments will begin at 2:00 p.m. All satellites start at 9:00 a.m. daily. The buy-in: Sunday through Thursday $540. Friday and Saturday – $1060.

My newly remodeled home away from home is draped and waiting to be filled with the noise of poker. Right now its wide expanse resembles a haven of peace and quiet away from the casino…that won’t last long. A female security guard stood inside yesterday/last night, and shooed people away when they moved the drapes to look at the room. Comical. If no one was supposed to look, they wouldn’t have removed the walls. It’s a teaser, like previews of a coming attraction.

It’s hurry-scurry time…race to sign the E/O list and try to escape for my weekend…but before I go…
Continue reading Friday, April 22, 2005

Trapped – $50-$100 PLO

Help Mrs. Wizard! There’s a lobster trap off the coast of the Poker Pit and I’m trapped in it! Oh my sins of Neptune…I’m being throwing into the cooking pot and it’s filled with a roiling mass of $50-100 PLO! 1s – Tony, 2s – walking, 3s – Herschel (a few posts on him last year) 4s – play over, don’t know his name but I remember him, 5s – Asian, unknown to me, 6s – S.C., appears around tournament time, 7s – Eskimo, 8s – name unknown but familiar, 9s – none other than the dreaded Devilfish.

Someone crank up the flame, I’m starting to cringe as my butt hits the seat and the 5s throws a $5,000 Baccarat chip to S.C. and wants him to change it. My antennae are up and I know I’m asking for more heat but I do my job. “That chip is not in play and not allowed on the table.”
Continue reading Trapped – $50-$100 PLO

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

I started in Fontana. The second heat of the $25,000 Championship Tournament was in progress and I dealt three tables of it before they stopped for the night. This was my first experience with $10,000 chips. Crazy. I’ve worked with $25,000 chips in live games but never $10,000 chips. I skipped through the tournament without a scrape or light bruise. Sweet!

I was back in the Poker Pit at 9 p.m. and my first game was an over active little $2-5 NLH game. Lots of chips moving around. One of our regular players was in the 6s. He’s got a great poker attitude and plays very well. He ended up going to war with the 1s in a hand that cost him all of his chips and he started with the best of it – ain’t that the way it is thought? He was the BB, the 1s put in a moderate raise. He went all-in for $131 more. The 1s thought about it and called. He held K-K. The 1s showed 7-7.
Continue reading Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Monday, April 18, 2005

Check these beauties out. They were hovering behind the glass at Shintaro where I met Tony G. for dinner. No we didn’t eat them. That was Sunday night but I’m getting ahead of myself.

Saturday evening/night was spent with my Pan buddies and buddettes. We started with four, expecting two others later and the way it turned out, we played in shifts because everyone couldn’t/didn’t get there at the same time.
Continue reading Monday, April 18, 2005

Saturday, April 16, 2005

HA! My last post was Friday – early a.m. – before I went to sleep. Yup, the day that everyone in the USA is running around at the last minute, preparing to file their tax forms and get them in the mail. Sheesh! I waited way longer this year than I have in the past few years but mine were done, and on their way by Wednesday, and I was singing a lighthearted tune. I owed – I owed – I owed, but it wasn’t something I couldn’t deal with and it’s out of my hair for another year.
Continue reading Saturday, April 16, 2005

Friday, April 15, 2005

I finally managed to find the brush strewn, rocky path up and out of the Bitchy Mode. Thank God I made it into the light after way too many glasses of wine. I managed to wake up with a hangover, no attitude for work, and a planned trip to help a friend with computer problems before work. I knew as soon as I shotgunned that first blast of coffee into my system, my body would take over where my brain left off and I would be OK!
Continue reading Friday, April 15, 2005