Tuesday, May 31, 2005

A tale of Two Grizzles with a Jarrod thrown in for the hell-uv-it. Most of the night was as smooth as an oil spill that spreads across water; low limit games, people laughing, and the game of poker.

I hit a $30-60 H game and Jarrod was in the 3s. Yes…multiple posts about him. He’s not a bad kid, he just has a lot to learn about the fine art of war across the green felt…although he thinks he pretty much knows it all.

One hand, Kenny – 2s was the Button, Jarrod – 3s was the SB, the 4s the BB. Kenny raised it pre-flop, Jarrod raised it to $90, the 4s put out $110 and I said, “Raise it…almost,” as I pushed the chips apart and motioned that he needed one more chip for the raise – Kenny was putting in $30 more.

The 4s put in the extra chip and I told Kenny the bet had gone to four bets. Jarrod said the 4s couldn’t be raising because he had put in only one extra chip. Now the 4s said he didn’t want to raise. I stated the raise stood.

Jarrod launched into a full scale argument that it was only one chip, the 10s backed me up and said it was two chips, and then Jarrod asked Kenny and the 4s if they minded if it was only $90 to go. They both said they didn’t care.

I stood firm; it was a raise. Jarrod wanted to know why I cared, if they didn’t mind, I was the only one objecting. I told him I cared that the game should run the way it was supposed to and I would get a decision. Jarrod argued that we didn’t need a decision, the players didn’t mind, what was wrong with me…why did I care.

I called for a decision, Boba arrived, I explained it to him, Jarrod jumped into it and told Boba the players didn’t care and I was the only one objecting. Boba set him straight (thanks so much, Boba), telling Jarrod that the raise stood, that I was doing my job, and that’s how the game should be ran.

Kenny ended up winning the pot. I got pushed into a $15-30 H and I heard Jarrod paged for $80-160 H which he took. And did I forget to mention that he slammed, pummeled, and jammed with 5 high in one pot in the $30-60 game…he needed a 4 to make a gutshot straight and didn’t hit it…got called down and had to show down. Another one he got caught trying to run over a player with 10 high, and yet another one, he blew off half of his chips with 10-2…which made absolutely nothing…the game was on…Jarrod was the game. Shortly after he left, it broke up.

My next game was in Bobby’s Room. It was falling apart with only Johnny C. and Chau left playing Chinese. They were each playing two hands. I still don’t understand the count and I don’t have to get involved so it doesn’t matter. They pushed huge amounts of chips back and forth, like $36,000 – $24,000 – and on and on, and they were still playing when I got pushed out of that game. It was painless, just deal four stacks until I ran out of cards, push the first hand to the player in front of the button, the second hand to the button, the next hand to the player in front of the button, and the next hand to the button.

Next game…hey…here goes. Jarrod was in the 2s, still jammin’. Sam G. was in the 5s (the 3s was empty) and the table was sprawled out like an eight handed game. Sam was in his usual ‘rare form’. He had a stack of $100 bills, clutched in his hand, and very few chips. The 4s was getting a massage and had some of his chips in racks. Sam obviously thought the 4s was the live one.

Sam raised, the 6s called, Sam asked if he looked yet, the 6s asked if Sam looked yet, Sam replied, “Three times.”

The ‘looked yet’ query went back and forth during my down like a game of pong, batted back and forth for no rhyme or reason because for sure no one was keeping score.

The 4s managed to almost knock over the rack as he pulled chips from it and I asked him if he’d mind taking his chips out of the rack. He said he didn’t mind at all. Sam told him he was slowing down the game. The 4s told Sam that he had to listen to me first and then to Sam. I was laughing.

Sam told him not to listen to me at all. I kept laughing. I looked at Sam and said, “You know I’m hard to get along with.”

Sam informed the 4s, “She’s a warden.”

A few minutes later the sky split open and chips spewed from Jarrod, Sam, and the 6s; the war was on. Giant sized war. The flop brought 8-8-4…I can’t even remember the Turn or the River but they were small cards and Jarrod announced, “Four eights are good. That’s the only hand that’s good,” as he slammed in another raise.

On the River Jarrod checked, Sam checked, the 6s bet and Jarrod hesitated, watching Sam. Sam did it just right, almost…almost acting like he was going to call, then Jarrod fired out $160 for the call, Sam folded and the 6s turned over four eights.

Sam announced that if anyone had told him he would lose $700 in less than an hour in this game, he would have killed himself. I busted out laughing. Sam verbally badgered and tried to maim the grey matter of these people and I just kept dealing. I got tapped out as Sam was telling me to take a hike or something like that, I told him I knew he loved me (defiant bitch that I am) and he mumbled something.

I said, “Hey, don’t be swearing now.”

He said, “I wish you were bungee jumping from Hoover Dam without the Bungee.”

I cracked up. I was on the nuisance break and my last game would be $300-600 Mixed. Don’t worry, when I hit that game, Sam was in 6s. Shaun was in the 7s. They were at war.

When I sat down, Sam did some mumble-jumble…”Oh my God! I can’t believe you’re in this game!” he was referring to me dealing and I just busted out laughing again. I can’t help it! He does all of these antics and makes all of this noise and it’s hysterically funny.

He lit up to my laughing. I told him I was a great dealer. He asked me how I figured. I told him that I ran my game, was courteous and polite, and pushed the pot to the winning hand. He said I dealt like shit! I kept laughing. Then he changed his tune. He informed me that he had changed his mind and he was going to think positive about me. It must have worked, he won almost every pot while I was there.

This down was pretty incredible as far as heat between players. I’ve seen Shaun and Sam go to war before but nothing like this. Sam won a big pot from Shaun in which Shaun had put in a $5,000 chip. Yes…Shaun got his change. A few minutes later, Shaun pointed out the fact that the $5,000 chip had disappeared from the table and he wanted it back in play. Truthfully, it’s hard to tell sometimes if these guys are serious or if they’re just looking to bust someone’s balls…not mine because I don’t have any.

I looked at Shaun and asked, “You want the $5,000 chip back on the table?”

Shaun said yes. Sam made a joke of it, that it must have been stolen…or it just disappeared…or…WTF. Then Sam made sure that he called Shaun an asshole for pointing it out – along with a few other finely tuned adjectives. By now I was sure Shaun didn’t care, he just wanted to point out to the table that it had disappeared.

Sam said that he wasn’t like the rest of them, he wouldn’t go all-in. He was playing behind.

I said, “There’s no playing behind. The chip has to be on the table to be in play.”

Lee was in the 8s. He took up the chant, “Get the floorman,” as he showed a $5,000 chip and in broken English tried to explain how Sam had put it in his pocket.

Jimmy W. was in the 3s, he said he thought that Sam should be allowed to leave the chip in his pocket because ‘someone’ might walk by the game and see the chip in front of Sam and demand payment…the game went on.

Tony was in the 4s and Sam and him did a little ‘tete a tete’ on playing heads up. They did a jabber war, “Get a f-kn’g dealer.” (Not because they were afraid to say fucking, just because they slammed out the word and enunciated it that way) – they slammed the sentence back and forth between each other until I busted out laughing again.

There were a lot more words between Sam and Shaun, and Sam made a lot more noise in telling everyone how he would win a million dollars before the night was over; they all played so bad; he was the best player; and more…but use your imagination here.

When I got tapped out, Sam asked me to come back and deal again. He said, “She’s a really nice person.”

I pointed to myself. He did a mock, “Moi?”

I hit the Time Clock. Two Grizzles and one Jarrod are enough for anyone in a night.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

It’s been a 1,000 degrees outside lately…except for today. The wind came back and somehow brought a deliciously cool front with it. Now the air is perfect, it’s dark, early a.m. and the wind has changed to a gentle breeze that dances across my flesh. Wonderful!

I work two days this week, Monday and Tuesday, and I’m off for eight working days – thirteen althogether with weekends. Sweet! My little girlfriend, Miss Kayanna is flying in on Wednesday. On Thursday my family, that lives here in Vegas, and me will hop a flight into Missoula, Montana. We fly back on Sunday. But while we are there, hanging out and kicking back, it’s time to watch my oldest granddaughter, Jasmine, graduate from highschool and begin the journey to the next stage of her life. It’s kind of like finishing a chapter in a book. Nothing ever stays the same, and life is better that way, but…I have a little flutter tug in my heart when I remember her running around my feet at two years old.

I will take my laptop and check in on posts on the Poker forum and email and might even spin off a post or two this week – hey they sleep at night, I don’t. Thank heaven for online poker because Missoula is way out of the real world of poker and I don’t have the heart to try and sit through a session of ‘smokers’ and ‘I’m waiting for A-A before I make a bet’ players.

A laughable…kind of sort of…funny but NOT! Mama-mia-Mary is in the room again. She’s always a delight and I enjoy her cheery smile and smart ass quips and lip at the table. We always get in a short hug, hello, visit, while she’s here with the promise of a hike or something one of these days. She dances between $20-40 Stud and $15-30 H. We said ‘hello’ while I was on a break and she was on her way back to her seat in a $15-30 game.

Enter the other character in the scene. I’ve posted about him before, I don’t know his name…I’ll ask next time I see his glaring face at the table. A little background on him. He’s graduated up to $30-60…from $8-16 to $15-30 to $30-60. He’s never friendly – to anyone. He doesn’t say a word when he plays until he starts losing, then he wants to slam his cards down the table, curse under his breath, and do the glaring eyes thing at the dealer. In one of my posts, I told him to set his cards down – after he’d thrown them at me – he glared at me and left the table. The next time I dealt to him and he threw the cards at me, the whole game was live, laughing and having fun and he was being a BUTT HEAD…he was the only problem with the table. I barked at him. It didn’t go over worth a damn so he walked the rest of my down. Fine! The funniest part of his play is that he’s ‘George’. He’s a great tipper and throws money at the Floor/List people and dealers…not me so much now since I won’t take his heat at the table.

Back to the ‘laughable’. Mary and I had just said ‘hello’, she was heading for her game, a $15-30 H, and her table was right next to ‘his’. He was in the 6s, she was in the 1s. She had to go past his chair to get into her seat (and the tables are still too close together in some parts of the room). She bumped him or had to ask him to move or something…I missed this part.

He grumbled something at her, she turned around – as she was getting ready to sit down – and said something like, “…you grouch old fart.”

He turned to her and said, “Don’t call me names, you fat bitch.”

The war started. I immediately called Carmen…she was right in the vicinity. Carmen went over to talk to both of them. A few minutes later, Pete was called from the office as Carmen had gone in to talk to him. Pete was talking to Mary about ten feet away from both the tables, I was still on break and approached Pete. I told him the grouch had blatantly called Mary a fat bitch. Mary told us both that he had then called Carmen a bitch too…that’s why Carmen summoned Pete. I don’t know what the end result was. The grouch was still playing later and so was Mary. I would guess that Pete talked/warned him about his behavior.

The funny side of it is that it’s like watching a sitcom. The grouch feels that he’s entitled to treat everyone with disrespect, just like an Archie Bunker thing, because he’s playing higher and let’s not leave out the fact that he tips. That has to give him some kind of feeling of superiority that he will not be tossed.

Another funny part of it was Mary didn’t appear to be angry, just more or less in awe of the fact that the grouch has ‘brass’ the size of bowling balls.

The ‘NOT’ funny side of it is that people just shouldn’t treat each other that way…both of them were out of line, Mary for calling him an ‘old fart’ and he for calling her a ‘fat bitch’. And Carmen…all she was doing was her job. Bee-atch! Just kidding!

On last Friday, I donated blood at Bellagio’s Corporate Challenge, hopped into the poker room at 7:15, asked Pete if I had to clock in or could I just leave…I got to go home…I got to go home…nah-nah-nah-nah-nahnah! Perfect!

I called Wayne…buddy extraordinaire…and he took me dining and beat me two out of three games at pool. Rematch coming up…I’m sure I would’ve beat his butt except I got a phone call and had to exit immediately. Next time!

Friday, May 27, 2005

Summer’s finally arrived. It’s too hot to talk about, just the thought of people talking and adding more hot air to the atmosphere is kind of scary. Ever wonder how in the hell they started the first casinos/hotels/establishments here in Vegas…long before air conditioning was a household word? I do. Those people had to be crazy…not only that, there was no bottled water. How the hell did they drink this water? The difference between then and now? Now the heat is at the tables in Bellagio’s poker room. There’s so much action it’s almost unbelievable – and plenty of bottled water but it won’t put out the fire spreading across the green felt. Be there, or be ‘un-kewl’.

A touch on a ‘laughable’. I got put in my place by a $2-5 NLH player last night. He was in the 3s, drinking, new to me but not necessarily new to poker, semi-running over the game with bad hands, and playing almost every hand. One hand, I mucked his cards, they were out into the table when the action came to him pre-flop. He had a fit, he had been talking to the cocktail server and looked back to see he had no cards. He jumped right into my face. I could barely get a word in – even if I tried to pry it in with a lubricated crowbar – and he was off and running.

I told him that I always dealt the cards to the player, I didn’t leave them in the middle of the table, and I took his hand because it appeared that he had looked at it and discarded it. No way that he was going for that. He demanded his cards back. They were already in the muck with other dead hands.

The player in the 4s interjected that the 3s had just won a big pot and his cards were out further in the table because the chips were in the way. (Ok…so I guess he pulled in his chips but failed to pull in his hand and take a look at it).

I apologized.

The 3s barked, “That’s bullshit! Pay attention to the game, dealer.”

I did a mock salute and meekly replied, “Yes, Sir!”

Jason was in the 6s and he was ready to explode with laughter. I went to the next hand, the 3s continued for a moment longer and I quietly said, “Swear to God, I’m going to start laughing if it doesn’t stop.”

Half the table was chuckling by now. There’s just no way to get around a Tin God. Best to ignore the smoke and noise and get right into the next hand. I did.

I’m on my way to Bellagio early today to donate blood for the Corporate Challenge. A very worth while cause no matter what your reason for donating. Take the time to share life with another person in need. Donate blood! You may be the one that needs it someday.

It’s Friday…mine too! Hello E/O list.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Several books are coming out that I’ve been asked to review, the first, The Professor, The Banker, and The Suicide King by Michael Craig is THE book to read if you want information about the biggest limit game ever played. It’s a great read, I recommend it for everyone that wants an insight into high limit poker. (Remember, in order to view a hyperlink – and there is one – you must click on the date/title of this post to bring the post into ‘full view’ and the hyperlink will be live. To return to the page with the ‘categories menu’ just click on “Table Tango” at the top).

The second book is One of a Kind and gives the reader a view of the life of Stuey Ungar. I’m just getting into it and have no review at this time but more later on that…the book is not out yet it either. I have a cold spot in my heart for Stuey…remember I dealt to him…but I won’t let it prejudice my read.

I also received The Poker Pack, for The Girl’s Night Out. It’s a cute, little, pink box filled with everything to start the newbie poker player on their way. Truthfully, the book that comes with ‘the pack’ is the best part of the whole deal and worth the money. Sorry, I don’t have a URL on purchasing it as this was sent to me as a perc, unrequested, but appreciated.

Back to the world I live in….

When my night started, I was thinking how easy it had been to work the room. Everyone was in good spirits, very little going on with player/dealer problems (from my street anyway) and I was getting a kick out of work…love it when it goes that way. But out of nowhere, along comes a hidden tree stump in the wooded glade I was jogging through. BOOM! I went down for the count and ended up shaking my head over all the insanities of the night…the Twilight Zone had hit the poker room.

I hit Table 4, again…what are the odds on that? Same place I started on Monday night, same start on Tuesday night. Hello, High Limit! Table 4 was $400-800 Limit H and $50-100 PLH. The game change was by dealer, my session was Limit Holdem. Three players, the 2s was unknown to me, Peter – 6s, Mimi – 8s. Mimi and Peter were at war in every hand during the first few minutes of my down and she ran over him with cards and stacked a lot of his chips…the hands all went to showdown.

The 2s finally got involved and won a huge pot from Peter. Peter had Q-Q, the 2s had J-2 Suited, flopped deuces and never slowed down…hit a Jack on the River. Peter took it all well…no flinching, card zinging, swearing, or agony, just ‘get the mother on’.

Here’s where it all gets crazy. Lee S. walks up, looks at the game and goes for chips. He returns to take the 1s. David O. was playing on Table 5, he sat down in the 5s on Table 4 to visit with Lee. They were talking real estate and prices in Vegas over the slamming of chips in the game.

The cocktail server came by and took orders.

Peter and the 2s went to war again, amazing raises pre-flop, 6-6-8 on the Flop. More raises. The Turn was a deuce. The raising war barely slowed down. The River hit with a straight card and they put in at least 12 bets. The 2s showed A-A, Peter showed K-K.

David stood up, threw a $5 chip into my hand, apologized, but was asking for change for the cocktail server. I gave it to him. He moved, with his hot coffee that had just been delivered, towards Table 5.

Peter jumped up, with his chips, and ran into David and his coffee, spilling most of it onto David’s hands. David didn’t say anything but it was as if Peter didn’t even know he’d hit someone…he dove into a chair between Lee and the 2s, setting his chips down and posting $400 between the Button and the Blind. Lee had the Button.

Lee asked Peter if he was really going to set there when there was no room for his chair. Peter said yes. I told Mimi it was her big blind. She set it out. I dealt the first three cards and she yelled, “Wait a minute,” and grabbed her blind back.

She wanted to know what was going on. Everyone explained that Peter was posting. She wanted to know if he was buying the Button…no, he’s posting…she set her blind back out and the chip wars went on.

Lee moved to the 4s, pushing his chips across the table while Peter and the 2s were in a raising war. Two of Lee’s chips rolled from his stacks. I threw my hands over the pot to keep any chips from falling into it and managed to grab both escaped chips and return them to Lee, he questioned it though. Nate was standing there and witnessed all of it so thankfully I didn’t have to count the pot down.

They decided to raise the PLH to $100-200 Blind. I notified Nate and got a new limit plaque.

Lee raised the next hand, Peter asked, “How are you, Lee?” as he fired back with a raise.

Lee replied, “Where have you been?” as he reraised.

The game never slowed down. I got pushed.

Table 5 was $400-800 Mixed. The game was semi-active but much easier to deal than Table 4 because everyone was paying attention. Almost the last hand I dealt, John E. returned to the table and started with rolled up 4’s in 7 Stud 8 or Better. He got it beat by 8’s full of Aces. Ugh!!! He thanked me…no he didn’t really mean it…and threw me a tip as he left the table in total disgust. Poker is painful at times.

Just when I hit a game that should have been stress free and fun, I ran into the $2-5 NLH Grinch. The game was playing nine handed, one seat open, and everyone was pretty relaxed and comfy, even though we were playing on a small table. We got our 10th player and I asked the right hand side of the table to shift a tiny bit to make room for the 5s. The 7s refused to move. I asked him to move just one inch. He looked at me and stated that he was fine where he was. I asked him again – he refused.

I told him nothing would happen until he moved over. He sat there.

The 10s was exasperated as hell with the 7s, “You’re slowing down the game.”

Not to worry, the 7s never moved or acted like he even cared if it bothered anyone. I called for a decision. When Dave arrived, I explained the situation. Dave told the 7s to move over. He shifted his butt in his chair but didn’t move.

Dave told the 7s that the dealer ran the game and the dealer didn’t feel the table was square and he needed to move over. The 7s sat there – unmoving. Dave told him to move.

The 7s did an exaggerated move of his chips almost into the 8s’s chips, “What do you want me to do, move here?”

Dave asked the 7s, “Sir, do you want to continue playing poker?”

The light hit somewhere in neanderthal land…he managed to move about two inches, which was all that was needed.

Dave left and the 7s mumbled something, “…hard to get along with.”

I glibly replied, “Yes we are hard to get along with.”

Hello knight in shining armor…the 10s jumped in, “No you are not and I’m going to defend you here,” as he directed his conversation to the 7s. “You were asked to move to make room for a player and you stopped the whole game. You make yourself look like an ass.”

The 7s thought he scored, “I can’t believe you’re letting him call me an ass,” as he glared at me.

I said, “He didn’t call you an ass, he said you are acting like an ass…there’s a difference.”

The 7s took a walk. The whole table was relieved when he was gone and couldn’t believe how obnoxious he was over moving to allow another player to enter the game.

Then I hit $150-300 mixed. David Levi was in the 1s but when I sat down the game changed to Holdem and he pushed a yellow button out and took a walk. I thought David was a new player. When the Blind came around to David, Mark and Mike told me to give him a missed blind button, I did with the explanation that I thought he was a new player. Problems on the horizon, kids…that damn tree stump again.

David returned a few hands later and put out $150. I told him he had to post both blinds. He said he hadn’t taken a hand yet in the Button games and I shouldn’t have given him the missed blind. Ughhh-id-ee Shmughhh-id-ee! I told him the other players told me to. Big lecture here, get the floorman, get a decision, the dealer doesn’t know what to do here…all this from David and I’ve never had a problem with him. He ended by telling me to never let the other players tell me what to do.

Chit Mon! How as I supposed to know his status when I hadn’t been there the last half hour…he had played the ante games but hadn’t taken a hand in a Blind game.

Then Mike and David went to war in a hand. Mike told David that I wanted Mike to win because he took better care of me than David did. David asked how Mike knew that and Mike replied that him and I slept together. I started laughing…gut busting, all out, bellying laughing.

Mike’s face went to total surprise, “Why are you laughing? Do you think it’s impossible that you and I could have sex?”

David jumped in, “Just because you sleep with someone doesn’t mean that you are having sex,” he motioned over his shoulder at his sweater, “I sleep with him but we aren’t having sex.”

I couldn’t stop laughing. But then I was saved by the push.

Then it was $10-20 NLH, in which I had the best of the deal because Wayne (no…not my hiking buddy) was in the 7s and he’s not only easy on the dealers but a super George.

Spoil everything by the next game, instead of $40-80 Mixed, it was $50-100 Mixed. As soon as I said, “$7 for time everyone…” I got ballistic city, “All the other dealers have been taking it out of the pot…”

When I hit a $4-8 H game, all guys except the chick in the 5s, all the guys were drinking and having a ton of fun. The 6s was having a birthday, the 7s’s name is Greg and we got introduced and shook hands. Scott was in the 10s and he remembered me from the night before with the Phil Helmuth wannabe in Scott’s game…noise and confusion, drinking and laughter reigned supreme…all except for the poor, little chick in the 5s.

She raised. I announced it, everyone folded to the 2s and he was the small blind. He said, “I call,” and put out two more chips. I told him it was raised. He tried to fold. I told him he could not fold. That he had stated call and call he must. He did but wasn’t very happy about it. Of course he won the pot with a pair of threes or deuces and threw me a $5 toke for making him call.

She loudly announced, “You didn’t announce the raise!” and there was no kindness in her voice.

I looked at her. She was glaring at me. I said, “Yes I did!”

The game rocked, the guys had a great time, the poor, little chick in the 5s went home…eventually so did I.

Goodnight Twilight Zone.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

We have a strict gaming regulation on how our ‘fills’ (table bank replenishments) are supposed to be brought in…it goes like this: The $100 bills are counted individually and laid face up on the table, (in a fan if there are more than one), all other denominations are to be counted face down, (in the same manner as the $100’s). Each denomination stack must be clearly seperated from the other. The Chip Runner puts ‘lammers’ on the table (the same amount as the cash) and we are supposed to pick up the bills and hand them to the Chip Runner. When we take in the fill, we are supposed to look at the racks, note that they are equal amounts, and count down one tube in stacks of five, fanning one of the stacks so it is obvious that it has five chips in the stack. We then hand the lammers and the empty racks back to the Chip Runner. This was a ‘must do’ from the day Bellagio opened or we could be written up and given the day off…and the Chip Runner must watch us count down the fill or they can be written up and given the day off too.

As I waited for a dealer I was pushing to finish the last hand, the dealer pulled a $100 out of the rack, the Chip Runner dropped a lammer on the table and the dealer handed the bill over his shoulder to the Chip Runner – WHILE THE HAND WAS IN PROGRESS! Granted, this dealer’s only been there about six months so…maybe the rules changed but I don’t believe so.

I passed the dealer in the employee’s area a few days later and mentioned to him that he could get written up for taking in a fill incorrectly. He politely informed me that he would take his chances.

Then I visited with a dealer last night that parks in valet. Wow! Guess he never heard of employee parking.

This is why we will never have a standardized rule in poker. Sure, you could be thinking ‘they are dealers, what does that have to do with standardized poker rules?’ Well, kids, it has everything to do with it. Everyone thinks they are above the law and the rule that applies to you doesn’t apply to them.

Maybe I’m just a little rule nit but if you’re employed by someone, what’s so tough about just doing what they ask you to do? I don’t know what the answer is…I don’t even know if there’s a question. I do know that people always seem to think that doing it their way is best.

I started in a six handed $400-800 Razz game. Lots of action. Sam G. was walking around the upper section, looking for? My guess was someone to put him in a game but I’m only guessing.

Next on the list was $300-600 heads-up, mixed, three games. Chinese Poker- deuce in the middle, Chinese Poker – regular, and Omaha 8 or Better. Brian and Randy. Brian was giving me glare devils and trying to scramble the leftover cards himself…after exclaiming that Randy had won every hand since I sat down. Randy was visiting with a ‘sweater’, amiable and relaxed, and kept me entertained with tales of his life. It really wasn’t a bad way to spend a half hour. Sam G. drifted over and sat at the table for a bit too. Damn…it just don’t get any better than this.

Then two $80-160’s, the first one was the main game. M.E. was in the 8s. She’s always cranky, looks like the last friend she had left town, and is ready to zing the cards into your hands or across the table so you have to practically stand up to snag them for the muck. I just try to ignore her when I know she’s in my line-up…sometimes she just goes away. But not this time.

One hand went into a raising war, she was in the Blind and calling all of it. The Flop was 2-3-4. Bet, raises. The Turn a 6. She checked, one bet, two callers, she check-raised. The bettor called, one fold, Mike was last to act. He thought about it for a half a second and said, “Put up a 5, darling. It’s the only chance I’ve got,” as he threw out another $160.

Bingo! A 5 peeled off on the River. It went check, check to Mike, he bet, M.E. and the other player called. He turned up 10-6 or something awful but he was playing the board. M.E. showed A-5. The other player had J-J. As I split up the pot in three stacks, M.E. said something intelligent like, “You boys can tip her.”

Yup! It’s a good thing the boys take care of me because that $3 I made off of her last year really doesn’t go very far.

But then I got to deal to a Phil Helmuth wannabe. He was in the 2s in $4-8 H. He had the look of a kid that had to sleep in the street if he lost his buy-in. And he was agitated…How Bad Could These Suckers Play looked like it was on the race track behind his eyes and it was losing.

He got involved with 8-3 Clubs only to run into an Ace high flush. When the 8s raised the River and the 2s did an exasperated call, showing his cards by holding them in his hand, the 9s asked the 2s what his problem was. The 2s threw his cards down the table and walked when he saw the Ace high flush.

The 9s told me that he had played cards with the 2s the night before and all the 2s did was berate the players when they beat him. I asked if the dealer ever interjected. The 9s replied, “No!”

The 2s returned a few minutes later, looked at his cards, and threw them into the 6s’s hands. Wow!

I left the cards laying where they were, turned to the 2s, and said, “You need to set your cards down here!” as I motioned to the spot right in front of him.

He acted so nonchalant, as if card throwing was something they did on Sundays back home as a contest. He said, “They’re right over there.”

I interjected, “You need to set your cards down right here,” as I sent his cards to the muck.

He replied, “It was an accident,” yet the look on his face wasn’t one of a person that felt badly for their actions or behavior.

I said, “You threw your cards down the table when you left.”

He acted like it was the norm, “WELL…when that happens…”

I jumped right in, “It isn’t going to happen. You need to set your cards down right here,” once again I motioned to the spot in front of him.

He never said another word. He bought more chips. I was courteous. When I got pushed, I told the incoming dealer that the 2s had been warned about throwing cards.

When I left for the night, the 9s was at the Cashier’s Window, ready to leave the room. The conversation went to the 2s and apparently he still had plenty of lip left for the players that beat him after I left.

Honestly…I can’t believe a dealer wouldn’t just tell him to put a lid on it…in a nice way of course. And if he didn’t ease up, just call the Floor Person. Here I go…being a little nit again.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

A note to all the Poker Bloggers of the world – the “Poker Forum” has a section for…you guessed it…”Poker Blogs”. A great place to tell the world about yourself, your blog, and possibly give a little insight into poker from your angle. Be sure to stop in and register. **this isn’t an invitation to spam the board**


Ron from Texas hit the room during the week. I managed to visit with him briefly a few times while I was working and one night when I opted to play on shift. The night I played, Ron was playing in a $2-5 NLH game and came over to sweat me a couple of times while I played $4-8 H. I was in the dead zone with cards and nothing was happening when he sat through the first session with me…of course he kept me constantly laughing with his banter and wit so the cards didn’t seem quite as hellaciously horrible. He came back again later to visit just before he had to leave for the night. He’s pretty damn funny and really upbeat. Wish he could stop by more often but Texas is a hell-uv-a long ways away. Ron brought me a bottle of wine last time he hit town, this time he brought himself and mega laughter…I enjoy both.

And while I’m on this type of thread, I met Greg, he introduced himself to me as I stopped by the table to talk to my friend, Vivienne. She was in a game seated next to him. I also met Jason, just after the new room opened. He waited for me to get pushed and sort of followed me out the door on my way to a break. We did manage a short visit and I thought I might see him the following night but it didn’t happen.

Sure…all three of them read here. That makes it really special for me, the fact that they read here and then take the time and energy to look me up when they are in Vegas.

I popped into the $40-80 Mixed Game during the week and announced, “Time Pot!”

Adam, 7-s, threw me $56. I set it on the drop slot and sent it into the ‘black hole’. The next hand was an Omaha 8 or better and ended up with one high and three lows, one the lows went to the same player that won the high half of the pot. Adam broke it down, the player that won the high and part of the low had to pay him $38 and the other two owed him $9 each.

Hello confusion! I knew what had just happened but it went right over the 4s’s head. The Time Charge was explained as always by the plaque on the table. Each player had to pay $7. But these kids liked the idea of a Time Pot so much that one of them paid the time and whoever won the first pot with X amount in it had to pay them back. The 4s just didn’t get it and it was an ongoing noisy thing for about five minutes…even though the 4s didn’t have to put out a dime.

Adam cracked me up one night in a $30-60 game…I was laughing with another player and I stated, “I’m not here for the money.”

Adam jumped in with, “You’re just here to collect information for the blog.”

Hey…maybe that’s why I am there…

Bobby’s Room was quiet most of the week. On Friday, when I was getting the big E/O, a game was cranking up in there. I asked about the minimum limit requirements for opening a game in that room, $2,000-4,000 Limit or $100-200 Blind NLH. The person I asked wasn’t quite sure but thought that’s what it was.

Ten Mile, I read your post about my site…I loved it! You managed to present the texture of getting to know ourselves, our friends, and the comfort zone somewhere inbetween. Thanks!

Friday, May 20, 2005

I recently heard a name paged for $30-60 H in the room. It went like this, “Mo-ron, your seat is open in $30-60.” I started laughing. Another player caught it and we did an eye contact, share the moment kind of laugh.

I do believe there are a few morons in the room but they aren’t only players…some of them work there. I guess the thing that always stands out in my mind is that anyone can play poker but not everyone can work in it and do the job well. Unfortunately there’s no magic scale to determine who should be there and who shouldn’t. I know that if I grew wheat for a living, I’d have the best machinery for harvest, the best equipment for irrigation and crop feeding, and whatever it took to make it work so that I got the huge XXX bushel per acre at harvest time. Not so in poker. But I can’t get into this right now or it will ruin my rosy glow so I’m drifting off to another part of poker.

Fright Night when I hit Table 16. $40-80 Mixed games. About 10 minutes into my down, none other than the slug, neanderthal, creep J.C.P. entered the game. That is Puggy’s brother, J.C. He posted the blind in Deuce, got through the first hand, and I said, “When you have the time, please take your chips out of the rack.”

I got the retard look and, “W-H-A-T????”

I looked right at him this time…God bless my poor eyes for having to look at the lifeless lump…”When you have the time, please take your chips out of the rack.”

I should receive the academy award of the day, each and every day, when I put up with people like him. He’s an eyesore, a blight, a nonliving thing that continues to roll into the poker room with his dark cloud of karma. I treat him as if he was a real human…it’s painful for me.

He waited about two hands before unracking his chips…just to show that he was in control…and then got called to the $20-40 Omaha with a half kill. Whew! He was gone. The air was fresher and the light was brighter.


Earlier this week, $10-20 NLH. Insane game. The 4s raised almost every hand, to $40 usually, sometimes more. He had them right where he wanted them. He was playing the game, naming the tune, changing the beat, and they were all falling all over themselves to stay out of his way…and he had chips. I managed to score quite well in this game…dealer terminology…the 4s tipped on every hand. Sweet!

I got pushed into a $40-80 Mixed game. About half way through my down, huge noise and unrest on the game I left behind. One of the players in my game went up to see what was going on. When he returned, he said one of the players called an all-in bet but didn’t realize the guy he called had a $5,000 chip in his stacks. A big argument ensued. They ended up ‘running them’ four times.

I just can’t kick the thought that I was specifically told by shift supervisors that ‘running them’ twice was a gaming infraction and some dealers had been written up for it. I’m wondering why/how it could have even gone to a decision…most assuredly it did not, the dealer just went along with it…and it would be OK. This type of thing just makes me crazy. WE NEED A STANDARDIZED RULE! Everyone has to know what the rules are and stick to them. *heavy sigh* Will the day ever come????

On another note. I promoted readers and responses to emails to the “poker clan”, a poker forum that I shared with another person that had two online poker sites. Things have changed. I believe there are never enough ways to discuss poker. For reasons that I do not care to disclose, I will no longer be a participant in the Poker Clan. I’ve chosen to move all my efforts towards unprejudiced posts at the IPF. The forum link is here and on the main page of my site…simply stated as “poker forum”. Please register and join me in a new and open insight, into the discovery of poker, without fear of having your post deleted or being chastised for your thoughts or being asked to apologize for your post.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

An update on my young friend, Jason, the security guard at Bellagio that was in a motorcycle accident. I call him at least once a week, sometimes during our Pan/Big Deuce session on Saturday night and everyone talks to him. He’s still in San Diego undergoing rehab. I spoke with him and Anna, his girlfriend, yesterday on my way in to work. Anna is there with him for a week. They are moving into an apartment (part of rehabilitation) and Anna will learn to help Jason as he helps himself back into a structure of independent living. God bless them both.

He expects to return to Vegas around the middle of next week. I won’t see him until the second week in June because I have plans to leave town on the 1st of June and will be spending time with my two of my granddaughters. When he’s established, he’s coming back to play cards at my place…that’s how our relationship started.

Two poker hands that left me shaking my head so far this week. As in WHAT WERE THEY THINKING? One of them unfolded in the $10-20 NLH game. Up front, close to UTG, the 3s raised around $80 (I may be off a bit by the $ amounts). The 8s kicked it up – I believe it was close to $160. Heads-up, the Flop brought an Ace and two small cards.

The 3s bet around $400. Without batting an eye or taking time to gasp, the 8s raised it $1,1?? more all-in. With very little ado, the 3s called. An Ace came on the River giving the 8s quads. The 3s showed K-K.

While I’m not an expert or the best player in the world. I really don’t believe I would have bet that much on the Flop or even called the raise. And Yes…I do know the 8s and he’s pretty damn solid so that may have been part of what left me scratching my head in a quandry of the 3s’s giving his money away.

The other hand happened in $8-16 H. The pot was raised pre-flop by Jerry. Nita bet on the Flop, K-Q-10, (Q-10 diamonds). Jerry raised, she raised, Jerry raised, she raised, Jerry called.

The Turn, a blank. She bet, Jerry raised, she called.

The River brought a King of Diamonds (three card Royal on the board). They went to war. I can’t even remember how many raises went in between them but I’m estimating close to six or seven. I think Jerry is the one that finally gave up. He said, “Ok, show me the A-J of Diamonds.”

He showed K-K for quads and Nita threw her hand away. Nita is pretty solid in her play and I couldn’t figure what she had that she could put that many raises into that hand. Sure, a full house would be the obvious but K-Q or K-J would beat any flopped pair full house so I have no idea what was going on in her mind as she was throwing raises at Jerry.

When the River hit, I thought Jerry must have a Royal as many raises as he put in but then knowing his play, I couldn’t figure out how he got to the River, especially heads-up. Chit Mon! Sometimes I can’t figure out where the hell people are with their play and why/how. Ok…I’ll stick to dealing and writing about it.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Sometimes the weekend leaves me feeling as if I need to go back to work to rest and catch up on taking the time to breathe. This past weekend seemed to unfold in a rush of activity, very little sleep, and before I knew it, it was early Monday morning and Sandman Land was calling. A few of us did the ‘cave hike’ on Saturday a.m. The cave sits in the wall of a canyon, hidden from view, in a canyon across from Red Rock Canyon. It’s touted as being the biggest cave in S. Nevada – it’s bigger than Bellagio’s poker room, even with the remodel. The moisture inside the cave was amazing…all that rain we had is still seeping down through the rock and earth. Flowers were in bloom everywhere along the trail which made the hike even more awesome.

I hosted my usual Pan/Big Deuce game on Saturday night, dinner on Sunday night to celebrate Chad’s Birthday, a few hours of sleep, and back to work.

Work!!! Sometimes I honestly feel as if it’s not work. I do enjoy my job. It’s sort of like watching a sitcom and I’m in the perfect seat to observe the show. The show started like this:

Table 2 – three players left in the daily tournament. David Levi and two unknowns. David went bust during my down and the other two, a guy and a gal (she had all the chips) were still dueling it out when I pushed out.

Table 4 – $80-160 H. Only a few familiar faces. Three $80’s were in progress and this was the main game. A war started on Table 5, directly in front of me, about contesting a seat change. The Floor Person had to be called for a decision. Somewhere in all the noise and confusion, the seat change issue was between Ritchie and Eskimo. After the smoke cleared, the game just dissolved into nothing. A few walked and others just cashed out. Hey…works for me. I thought I’d be sitting a ‘dead-spread’ when I got there.

I cruised through rest of the down and hit Table 5. For just a heartbeat, I thought I was going to get away without having to deal anything on that table. It had been a Mixed Game with a $100-200 limit. KEE-RIST! Here they come. Unknown – 1s, Minh – 3s, Vinny – 4s, Ritchie – 6s, Cuckoo – 7s (walking). They kept trying to hustle Bobby out a Deuce game on Table 13, (Tables 4, 5, 13, 14, and 15 are all ‘up top). They had to play a higher limit than the $80-160 Deuce that was going on Table 13 and Bobby semi acted like he would come over if they upped the limit. They decided on $200-400 straight Deuce and I called the Floor Person to bring me a game plaque and limit change. Bobby put a $5,000 chip down in the 5s and went back to Table 13. Vinny jumped into the 8s. While the Floor Person was looking for a limit sign, they decided to play $300-600.

They drew for the Button, I dealt. Minh was on a terror with raising every hand and drawing two and three cards. Ritchie was in stitches, continually making comments about Minh’s raising and how the limit was too low for Minh and he didn’t care about the money. Minh normally plays the Big Game limits.

Minh and Vinny went to war. Minh took three cards on the first draw, Vinny took one. Start the raising wars. Minh took one card and stayed pat on the last draw. Chips were flying, stacks of blacks were shoved into the pot and Minh turned over a wheel. I thought Vinny was going to go ballistic on me but he managed not to spit and go too crazy. He did throw the Button into the rack on the next hand when it was moving to the 1s. I cautioned him, “Don’t throw anything into the rack.”

The comedy starts here. A few hands later, on the first draw, as I gave Minh his two cards, one of them did a slight pop up towards Minh. He told me it was exposed and granted he was the only one that could have seen it but still…I turned it up and called for a decision. Hell, I have no idea what is supposed to happen there. The card was a King.

Ritchie and Vinny both had a bit of a fit, exclaiming that no one would have seen the card but Minh, it was ridiculous for him to say anything, that if it had been a wheel card he would have not said a word, blah, blah, blah. Skip arrived. I explained to him what happened. The argument was still going on with Ritchie, Vinny, and Minh about the card and who would have seen it and a few million other things. Minh’s English is very broken and not only was he right in the middle of the Dialogue Dance, he was kicking up the tempo.

Skip told me to shuffle the King and the rest of the deck. Vinny barked at him for his decision, Ritchie balked at it. I waited. Skip thought about it for a few seconds longer and decided to go get Pete (shift supervisor). I waited.

Vinny snorted at me, “What’s going on dealer?”

I said, “I don’t know.”

He barked, “You just cost me $3,000 and you don’t know?”

I looked at Minh, Minh returned the look and I swear we both shared the same thought…Vinny was losing it.

A minute or more went by. Pete arrived. I explained what had happened.

Cuckoo came back and sat down.

(tip – never venture from a page in wordpress without saving first. Woops! rewrite what you spent an hour on)

I explained the situation over again to Pete. His decision, since it was the first draw, the King would become the burn card and Minh would receive a new card. Done deal. Vinny, Ritchie, and Minh were at war in this hand. Minh won the next couple of hands.

Vinny exclaimed, “She likes you. That’s why you are winning.”

Sure kids. I control the shuffle master, the stars, the wind, the sun and moon. Need something done on the supernatural plane? Call Linda. She can get the job done. WTF!

My turn to retort. “Sure I like him but what does that have to do with poker?”

Minh jumped into action here. One of the things I love about him is that if he believes something to be so, broken English and all, he’s going to let you know about it.

“No…she love everybody. She love Chau. She love Chip. She love Doyle…”

Vinny interrupted him, “But she doesn’t love Cuckoo.”

I almost fell out of my chair on that one. Cuckoo and I’ve had our share of bad times but we manage to patch up now and then. I looked directly at Cuckoo, “We’ve shared hugs away from the table. Tell the truth, Cuckoo.”

His reply was even funnier. “Yes…but we don’t have to explain anything to him. He’s from Korea.”

Out of nowhere Vinny decided he wanted to touch the tattoo on the back of my neck. “What is that? A bird?”


The game went on. Lots of raises from Minh. Chuckles and retorts from Ritchie about how Minh wanted to give his money away and the deck wouldn’t let him. Vinny won a few pots. I got pushed…thank you, God. I know you are always looking out for me. Come hell or high limit…er…ahhh…are they one and the same?

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Enjoy – Stop by often.

And last but far from least, one of my favorites:

Names have been changed and if a name appears to represent someone that plays poker anywhere in the world, it is strictly coincidental. Any reference to the Real World is completely unintentional. If you can’t stand reading about antics or behavior that resembles something you did, don’t read here or change your behavior patterns…as in get a life, get a job, get REAL!