Since I already covered most of Sunday in an earlier report, this will be more like filling in the blanks of the entire weekend. Please to enjoy the hilarity.
After scoring with "Too Drunk to Call," I hit two other horse races on the day. The first was another placed solely on the name: $4 across the board on AJ Melina. Despite being impeded on both turns by the same goddamn 10 horse, the gutty namesake of The Boy finished just a nose back in second.
Then, thanks to a gracious gesture by BG, who lent me the use of his chair and form, I handicapped the 8th at Aqueduct within an inch of its life, resulting in a huge payoff when my 16-1 shot crossed the wire first. Thank you, I accept the $153 from your sportsbook.
With some 50-odd bloggers in the book, in the poker room, in the bar, in the alcove off the bar, it was a great afternoon filled with humorous anecdotes--like Dr. Jeff ripping up his ticket, which was a push and Al "sticking the landing," which I unfortunately missed--and great conversation. I keep saying this, but it's true: That was a highlight (which brings the total number of "highlights" to roughly 184).
Cashing in the MGM tourney was cool. Playing three live tourneys over the course of the weekend, and playing them well, gave me a nice dose of confidence and cemented my plan to play at least one LA Poker Classic event. There were no real notable hands/plays in the MGM deal, though I was first seated at a table that approximated the temperature of the Arctic Circle. The MGM had sprung a leak and we were smack dab in the middle of the chill flow. Despite wearing two shirts at the time, I still appeared to be smuggling peanuts. My nipples could have cut glass. Normally, chattering teeth would be a pretty reliable tell, but not this day.
I did get lucky once, at the Final Table, when I insta-pushed with AJ. The short stack in the BB called with A8o, but the initial raiser had JJ. I sucked out a Broadway straight on the river, thanks to Derek calling for it. The JJ guy was BY FAR the worst player at the table. I'd sat to his left for about two hours earlier. But his play was not the most offensive thing about him. No, it was his orange fleece hoodie that was bright enough to rival the Aurora Borealis. Seriously, the color extended two inches off the actual garment. Had I been under the influence of even a mild hallucinogen, I might have been tempted to eat it. Guess he was just taking a quick poker break from hunting season.
There is little doubt that CJ's been on a luckbox streak of fantastic proportions, but playing those final two tables with him, I got to see his skills close-up and I guaran-fucking-tee you there is infinitely more to his game than good fortune. He expertly played hard at one pretty boy, ultimately tilting him to the point he called with much the worse hand, bombing out in 9th after being the chip leader 15 minutes previous. When you consistently put yourself in position to win tournaments, as CJ does with these types of adroit moves, the luck will find you. One of my all-time favorite sayings is, "I never saw luck jump on a man sitting in the shade."
Late night in the CantHang suite was...well...beyond awesome, despite me drinking a vanilla Stoli and Cran, which tasted like Robatussin that had gone past its shelf life. Yuck. I REALLY wanted to go back to Casino Royale with the late night crew, but I could no longer feel my legs.
I'm really good with names. That is mainly because I used to be really bad with them, a foible that did not mesh with my choice of profession. So, I created this little ritual I do whenever I meet someone, the secret of which you can purchase from my website in four easy installments of $19.99. What often happens then, especially with large groups, is I remember people's names and they don't remember mine, which always creates this hilariously awkward situation for them. It happened at least half a dozen times that weekend, where people look back at me blank-faced and say something like, "uh..hey...uh...man." Since I enjoy that moment so much, I never help them out. So, sorry if one of those was you (*cough*Performify*cough*). But I had fun.
My wife is reading all your blogs. She doesn't read the "poker stuff," though. Just a little tip if you want to target the hot wife demographic.
Yes, EZ, I had totally forgotten that.
Speaking of easycure, he's raising money for cancer research. For the price of a low buy-in SnG, you can cure cancer! That's +EV, both in a karmic sense and, considering the way some of you guys smoke, a pragmatic one.
On that note, remember it is always far better to give than to receive during the holidays and the whole year through. I hope you all create wonderful memories this season with your families and friends. Best wishes and monster flops to all of you from myself, the dear and patient wife and AJ.