Thursday, 6/2/05

Posted by in Poker

I had grand plans for the day. I was going to get up early, finish up my laundry and packing, get my nails done, hit the bank, and be ready for a noon pick up by my best friend Nancy who would take me to work, where I would diligently work a full day before Scott would then take me to the airport.

3am, I am still doing laundry. No big deal. My recent time in Tahoe has me adjusted to little sleep. I can get up at 9, be out of the house at 10, get my errands done and be back home by noon for my pickup.

9am, dearest Nancy calls. “Can you call me back in an hour?” “Sure”.

10am, the phone rings again and I’m really up this time. OK, 10:20.

11:30, I call Nancy and tell her I’ll take myself to the airport. πŸ™‚

I finally roll in to work around 3:30pm and make my best effort at putting in a couple of hours, trying hard not to think about the fact that I will be in Vegas shortly. Scott is no help with this. Understandably jealous, he’s giving me the locals perspective and also sending me on a mission to Binions to secure a $1 chip.

Flight was un-eventual. I brought Raising Arizona to watch on the laptop, however the battery didn’t make it the whole way, which I pretty much expected. Found out one of the drawbacks of flying Southwest is no one ever mentions to you which baggage carousel your luggage will be on – not a big deal at some airports, but at McCarron… Found luggage, got in line for a cab, and headed out for the Plaza.

I was arriving well after the sushi dinner was scheduled to begin, so my plan was to unpack, take a short nap, and then head over to the MGM. And that’s exactly what I did.

I admit I was anxious about walking into my first Vegas casino all by myself. I only knew what a few of the other bloggers looked like, so I was a little bit concerned that I’d spend all night in this place like passing ships in the dark…never meeting everyone, but playing tables away. I wore my UT shirt to stand out somewhat, just in case.

Got to the MGM and walked through the maze of -EV to get to the poker room. I knew the game that everyone was going to be playing that night was HORSE, and since that was not my game, I signed up for a $2/$4 and was seated immediately. I asked where the HORSE game was being dealt, and was pointed in the right direction.

I played a couple of orbits at my table and then went over to the table and said hello. I arrived right as Halverson’s hand of infamy was occurring. Introductions were made (Al, Scott, Maudie, Matt, Chris, Pauly, Jason) and of course there was plenty of “Which April are you?” (apparently the shirt did not help). Helixx later took me upstairs to the private area where the other game was going on and I met Gracie, Bob, Felicia, Nerd, and many more I know I’m forgetting. I chatted for a bit and returned to my game.

I took a break later and then met Head and Joe Speaker, and then G-Rob arrived. Well…cards be dammed, I had to get up immediately and greet him. I arrived mid-rant and then relieved Otis of rant-listening duties, as he returned to his table. I’m sure our respective tables loved all of our table-hopping all night. Therefore, it only made sense that we get seated together.

How many times do you have to say fuck to get kicked out of the MGM?

G-Rob and Otis were playing together at a table and as soon as a spot opened up, I moved over, sitting on Otis’s left. There is nothing to make you feel more secure in your first time in a Vegas casino than having Otis right beside you (even if he is talking trash ;)) and one of your favorite UB buddies there across the felt. (And oh what nice felt it is. I *heart* the MGM Grand).

At one point, G-Rob commits the worst offense known in poker-room-dom, and drops the F-word. (Big fucking deal if you ask me). He gets a warning of course, and then proceeds to go off on a string of “fucks” and variations, conveniently enough right as the floor man is walking by. He couldn’t help but laugh at G-Rob – not only were we all doing so, but you can tell just by looking at him that he’s a great guy – so of course the floor man just gave him the standard warning. Always pushing the envelope though, G-Rob asks:

“How many times can I say fuck before I get kicked out?”

“That’s your last one”.

G-Rob then tosses the floor man a dollar chip, which hits him beautifully.

“OK, you got one more.”

The table erupts in laughter. At this point it is well after 1am, and Otis begins to mumble something about needing to get to bed for something important he was doing in the morning. I begin to assure him that sleep is highly over-rated and that really, just because someone is playing in a WSOP Event in a few hours doesn’t mean they should be in bed.

Kent comes by and his awake presence is assuring to Otis that he’s not the only one acting somewhat irresponsibly that night. We take a break and head over to the SportsBook area where some of the gang is hanging out and chatting. I introduce myself to Iggy, then head back to our table.

A word about the 1 Seat…

Marty dubbed him Brown Shirt. I don’t remember exactly what he had done specifically to G-Rob, but I know they were the usual low-limit “I play any two cards” suckouts. He’s the reason G-Rob left us. That was reason number 1…

Reason number 2 came long after Otis had gone to bed, Mr. “I’m Playing in the World Series in a few hours”. CJ moved in to take his seat, and at one point had asked me how Brown Shirt got that big stack of chips in front of him. I replied “The usual way”, meaning suckouts galore. We didn’t know what he bought in with, but he had over $300 in front of him.

Oh, we were getting a little silly. There had been some drinking, yes. The straddles began. And of course, when you have a table of mostly bloggers (Chilly was on my left, plus we had FOBs as well), you have to look out for low cards on the flop…

I was already loving Marty for his witty banter. When the 7-2 came on the board, I knew he had the nuts. He and Brown Shirt were heads-up, and this was gonna be great. River came a 3, pairing the board. Brown Shirt? Holding A3. Cracked the hammer. I could not believe it. I actually teared up a little. It was soul-crushing. I looked at Brown Shirt stacking up his chips, and…well, it was personal now.

It’s Marty’s story to tell, so I will leave it to him. Suffice to say BS (ha! how freakin appropriate) left before we did. I had a great time playing with the boys at the MGM, finished up, walked out with CJ into the rising sun, and took a cab back to the Plaza. It was a great start to the weekend, and quickly made me feel right at home.

Coming up: Who the hell gets sick in Vegas?