Tuesday, September 29, 2009

9.29.09 My Roots are Dead

I awoke before 6 again this morning. It has become regular now. I rarely sleep in. I guess this is a normal development. I mean, I am getting older. Older people seem to wake up with the sun all of the time. Add this to the list. It is becoming official. The anxiety began shortly after I brushed my teeth.

My tooth is hurting badly. My dentist appointment is for 10 AM. I know, by the pain I am experiencing, that a root canal is going to be required. My dentist is going to basically climb inside my mouth and needle, and drill, and poke, and pinch, and grind, and stick, and drill, and drill, and drill, always the drill. The anxiety level just went up another notch.

Be a man! Yes, that is what I would tell my son if he was whining about the dentist. Be a man, accept your fate, take the pain, toughen up, stop your whimpering, be a man. I'm pretty sure my dentist hates me. He is going to hurt me. Anxiety continues to rise.

I try to drink my gourmet coffee. Life is good, until I take the first steam laden sip. The pain sends me reeling from the cup in horror. The left side of my face feels as though, well, it feels as though there is an open nerve inside my jaw that has a huge infection all around it.

I rush to the kitchen and swallow two tylenol. I also grab the ice pack from the freezer and pin it to my face. That's nice. I feel the coolness roll across my entire face and the pain deadens a little. It is going to be fine. 10 AM will be here soon.

I walk into the office at 9:55 AM and announce my presence. The lady behind the counter says hello and smiles a warm smile at me. That is comforting, but my tooth hurts enough to not want her comfort. I want a dentist, now. Of course, I say nothing except hello and turn to go sit down in the waiting room.

There is an older woman, maybe 55 or 60 years of age. She has blond hair and is wearing a sweater and a pair of dress sandals. Her feet are well manicured, but they are old. I'm guessing she used to work on her feet, or she is older than I think. Her feet looked old compared to her face. She is reading a Women's World magazine. I smile at her and sit down, she smiles back.

There are a couple of Sports Illustrated's sitting next to me and I actually get to almost complete one of them when the lady behind the counter calls me back. It is now 10:40 AM. The pain in my mouth, for whatever reason, has subsided. For this I am thankful. Maybe the Tylenol was working. I'm taken to "the first room on the right" and the assistant puts a lead vest over my chest for the x-rays.

The dentist comes in and says "He's back!" in a jovial voice like he is surprised to see me. He knows me better than I know myself, I guess. I answer "I had to come back, my tooth is killing me."

He explains he thought that may happen and it looks like a root canal will be required. He asks if I would like to know first how much it will cost me and what my insurance will cover. I ask "Do you have a payment plan?" He laughs. I do not.

It turns out it will cost me almost $500 for a root canal and new crown. They do take my request for a payment plan seriously and offer to have me pay half today and half when I have the permanent crown put on, in three weeks. For some reason this makes me feel better, and my anxiety actually drops a little bit at that very moment.

I am very happy when he moves towards me with that long, sharp, skinny needle. The numbness is felt almost immediately. I feel it first at the point where the needle enters and slowly, but surely, spreading over the entire left side of my face.

His assistant moves in and has me open my mouth wide. She puts a rubber dental dam around the tooth they will be working on. I suddenly realize this will keep things from falling into my throat. Wait a minute, this is a good idea. How has this never been used on me before? I hate all of my past dentists now. How could they not have thought of a dental dam?

What came next was the least disturbing episode of any tooth work I have ever had done. There was no pain, there was no gagging, there was no swearing, and there were no promises to find him late at night and and gouge his eyes out for what he had just put me through.

We finished up an hour and a half later. My tooth no longer hurts, and I get a new tooth in three weeks time. Life is good.

Codsey out.

PS. Five things:

1. Painless Dentistry
2. Dental Dams
3. Flexibility
4. Good Friends
5. Pot Roast in the Slow Cooker.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

9.24.09 Hump it!

This is sort of a work in progress...So far I like it.

Hump it! Call
Two cards, green felt
Clay chips, short stacks, deep stacks, no stacks
Dealer's hands, French manicures
Raise, call, check, bet

Hats, sunglasses
Music in your head
Tips, checks
Should have stayed in bed

Button raise, limp re-raise
Trapped real good
Gutshots, open ended
Tugs at his hood

Scared money, weakness
What is he trying to sell
Big bets, over the top
That might be a tell

Check-blind, bet
Someone will raise!
Look back now
It's all just a haze

Airball, again
Some things never change

Two cards, life renewed
Loudspeaker drivel
Bet, call, fold
My head's on a swivel

5/7 done
Bet, raise, reraise
I'd rather have a gun

Top pair, two pair,
Top and bottom, wait
Flopped it, turned it
Made the nut straight

One more to go

Sets, trips, full houses galore
Straight, Flush
Min raise, why no more?

Burn a card
Expose one too
Shuffle it back
Roll it over...

Come on nine
Come on nine
Come on nine...


Suck outs, dominated
No need to whine
Next hand, life renewed
This time, NO NINE


Ps. Five things I am thankful for:

1. Good weather
2. Tiger sweat
3. Rich people
4. Higher math
5. Free will

PPS. For those who read this poem, or whatever it might be called, and thought to themselves "Hey, what in the hell is he talking about?" well, we sort of speak out own language at the poker room. This is just a sampling of some of the verbiage you may hear on any given day.


Saturday, September 19, 2009

9.19.09 I'm Me on Friday

This week has been quite good, and certainly very profitable. I even had an opportunity to play some more golf this week, and that experience was one to remember as well. Before I begin , however, here are five things I am thankful for (I'd better get it in now, before I forget, you see):

1. My friend, Dean, for having such a bad greenside game, in golf, that he had to try some weird, whacky tip in order to improve his chipping. Because of this tip I am currently enjoying my greatest good putting streak in about 20 odd years. That is a heckuva long time.
2. The grass continuing to grow. It's the only exercise I get each week. I am looking forward to winter and only needing to cut it once every other week.
3. My daughter beginning her first "official" job. She is a fully accredited, soccer referee, and I am proud of her.
4. The in-laws watching the boy last night so that M and I could attend a concert. Yes, a concert, and it was a spectacle.
5. The new movie "I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell". Yes, Tucker Max has a movie. The Apocalypse is nigh.

It is difficult for me to understand the popularity of this Tucker Max character, or person. If you have never heard of him before, and I find that hard to believe, please Google his name and learn of him, and his kind.

Tucker Max is probably the most despicable, deceitful, overbearing, judgmental, and incredibly humorous writers which I have read in many a year. His humor is not for everyone, as even I must admit he is crass beyond belief at times. Tucker Max chooses to do or say anything in an attempt to see how low women will go to be with a pseudo-celebrity of his apparent social status.

To me, his book is a scathing eye opener to people's, particularly women's, ability to overlook obvious shortcomings in a person if the mere possibility of future wealth and social acceptance exists. There are many lonely people in the world, and it worries me that there may be far too many heartless others eager to exploit them. I say watch the film, or read the book, and decide for yourself. I warn you though, you will laugh and then you will have to think about yourself.

Maybe you ought not to watch the movie at all. It could be too much for you.

Let's move on...

M and I went to a free concert at the Jacksonville Landing last night. It was a country music concert being put on by a local country music radio station, and therefore the entire night was M's idea. I'm more of a Alternative Rock kind of guy, or possibly Classic Rock, or maybe even Pop music, and Country music is far down my list. Of course, she definitely was looking forward to the music and the night out, and I aim to please.

The Jacksonville Landing is downtown. It sits right on the bank of the St. John's River and there are four or five restaurants that ring a semi circle that is large enough to hold a stage and probably 3,000 people. I'm not sure on the number, but it was packed.

We don't usually venture to downtown Jax except for football and baseball games. There are a couple of museums that we have been to, but we mostly just stay in the suburbs with the rest of the middle class.

I was surprised to find available parking on the street and only a couple of blocks from the Landing. But, I should not have been surprised. All of the garages and pay lots were being filled, and the street parking was being ignored, because of the clientele not being from the city either! They were all from the outlying areas and knew very little of Downtown Jax. We were awash in a sea of blue jeans and cowboy hats. Codsey was out of his element.

We parked on the street, made a mental note of the location, and began our trek to The Landing. How do I know that I have entered the twilight zone that is urban America? By the sign outside of a local daytime restaurant. It read something like "Make someone's day by committing random acts of kindness and senseless acts of love". Yes, "senseless" acts of love. I'm pretty sure it was supposed to read "selfless" cause I have no idea what a senseless act of love really is. I guess it's just loving someone like that guy out west who kidnapped that girl 18 years ago and fathered two of her children. Loving that guy wouldn't make much sense. I guess that is senseless love. I'm not for it.

M and I thought that sign was quite humorous, and we chuckled about it for some time. As we walked along the street we fell in behind a group of late teen or early twenty something good ole southern boys and girls. The boys all had the tight wranglers with the signature skoal rings on the back pockets. This made me wish I had a chew. None since Christmas though, and I'm still holding strong.

We also noticed one of the guys had a 6 inch long hunting knife hanging on his right hip, in a sheath. I thought it was odd that someone would want to bring a knife to a concert, but hey, it's the south and these guys were clearly country. I seriously wasn't concerned. Interestingly enough, neither was the security guard at the front door because she was feverishly checking the backpack of a guy with a little baby hanging on his chest. I guess it had to do with anti-terrorism, but I'm not sure. The guy with the knife waltzed on through.

The Landing was jam packed so we decided to try to get a table at one of the local restaurants. They all had outside tables and why not sit down and eat while drinking and listening to some live music? There was a Hooters, but we passed. There was a sushi place, but we passed. We decided on American Cafe. Plus, they were serving Margaritas for $4. I'm all-in.

We put out name on the list and after about an hour, and two margaritas later, we sat down on the deck. I'm not sure of the first two performers, but their music was decent. Like I said, I'm not that much into country music, so I watched the people. Most of the women wore jean mini-skirts and cowboy boots. The men wore t-shirts with various levels of half dressed cartoon women printed on the back and/or front of the shirt.

One of the more interesting shirts had a women with a bikini, the top barely covering her nipples, and the bottoms being thong in nature. It had a caption which read "It's Time to get the Real Lube". Seems it was an add for motor oil. Interesting.

After we ate our pizza we went downstairs to the floor. We managed to push our way through the crowd and we ended up getting positioned near the steps at the back of the stage where the performers came and went. Apparently, one of the performers wore an incredibly sexy pair of "New Religion" jeans. It seems he looked great in them, as his jeans, and his buttocks, were the hot topic in our twosome for the next 15 minutes. M was hammered. She was funny too.

I know why bands which play later in the show are actually considered to be better sounding than the early playing bands. It's because it takes the crowd a while to become numb enough from alcohol and drugs to not really care what the band sounds like. Once the crowd reaches the proper intoxication levels it is "party on!".

It was actually a very enjoyable evening. As the last performer was playing, some guy named Azor or something, and he was wrapping it up, we began to walk out. The crowd, while rowdy and raucous, was not out of control and there were no fights or disagreements that I could see. It was a very nice time. Azor was singing something about "not being me until Monday". Nice song, that one.

We walked back to our car, which seemed to take much longer than the walk to the concert. The ride home was uneventful except for M babbling on and on about "New Religion" jeans and butts, and how next week's concert was going to be even better. I have to get some new jeans.

Codsey out.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Five things I am thankful for:

1. Sleeping in
2. Gourmet latte
3. My ability to back step quickly and avoid perilous spots
4. Freedom
5. School for the kids to go to each day

I don't know what came first. As I write I am trying to review the past three days and figure out exactly what it is I am doing right. I must be doing something correct because I am winning again. The answer may be that this renewed positive attitude has freed my mind allowing my decisions to be more correct, more often. That would be absolutely beautiful if it were definitely the case.

If a positive attitude can really and truly improve your performance, then I have found the secret to poker, and lovemaking. At the poker table I have been like some sort of sixth sensed monster, laying down hands at the right time and picking off bluffs as though the opponent has his hand face up. In the bedroom the results are still mixed, but I was able to keep her awake the last time, so that is an improvement.

I should add that I did hit a pretty big hand today after making a truly awful play. I had the A6 of clubs, and my opponent had raised the pot to $20 after I had limped in for $5. Another person called his raise, and I decided to add my $15 to the pot. I normally hate this play because he probably has me in a very bad spot, and this goes against all of my rules for playing tight. The flop came 5-6-7, with one club. Hmmmmmm. The interesting thing is that I have already made the decision in my mind what I am going to do. I checked, the raiser bet $35, the other caller folded, and I moved all-in. The raiser only had $60 left and he immediately called and flipped over his pocket aces. Ooops.

See, I was hoping he had Ace-King, or maybe even less, like King-queen. Who am I kidding? I was gambling, and based on his past play, I liked my chances. I was wrong, until another 6 came on the turn giving me trip sixes.

I looked at him and said "Man, I just put a horrible beat on you, and I'm almost embarrassed to turn over my cards."

But, not really, cause I wanted that cash in the middle. So, I roll over my A-6 and scoop the pot. My opponent was unhappy, to say the least. I've been in his shoes too many times to count, and nothing I said was going to ease his mind. Now I see why people draw for that miracle card ALL of the time. It is quite an adrenaline rush when it hits.

Otherwise, I played well today, and I am pleased.

So, did the new positive attitude come because of the sudden success at the tables? Or did the success follow the change in attitude? I still have the rubber band on my wrist, and I'm still mutilating my wrist each time I catch myself thinking in a negative way. Now though, I'm snapping my wrist BEFORE the bad thought occurs, like right when something bad happens. After wincing in pain (sometimes I make it hurt a lot), I then talk myself down from the ledge and get back to playing the next hand.

I have no clue if it is helping, but why risk it?

Poker reminds me of a girl I knew in high school. You know the one I'm referring to. Remember that girl that was really cute, and really cool, and everything about her was just perfect? You do, don't you. Do you also remember that she knew just how wonderful she was and would use that knowledge to get you to do her certain favors?

She'd hang out with you, smiling, laughing, and joking around. She'd flip her hair and tilt her head. She'd see you smiling at her and would give you that smile back. You'd see her out somewhere and she'd talk to you for a bit and then convince you to give her a ride to another guy's house. You remember, right? That's poker.

Right now poker is smiling at me, and I love her. I know that bitch will turn, though.

SNAP! Ow! That was a big one.

Why risk it?

Codsey out.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Five things I am thankful for:

1. Getting my tooth repaired this morning
2. Spotting a friend of mine playing in the WSOP on ESPN (he busted The Grinder)
3. The weather turning cooler
4. Breaking 80 on the golf course this weekend
5. Seeing four old friends that I have not seen in quite a while.

Life is Good, people. It, most likely, beats the alternative. I'm betting that my good friend, Paco, is pissed today that his beloved Buffalo Bills got beat in horrendous fashion last night on MNF. They'll have to "circle the wagons". In the poker world that loss last night for the Bills would be referred to as a Bad Beat. It should have been almost impossible for the Pats to win that game. The Bills had to get very unlucky to lose. Something like the kick returner fumbling on his own 30 yard line or something like that would have to happen. Oh yeah, it did happen just like that. Ouch.

I did win my fantasy football game against my sister in law's weak team. Sorry Sheryl, but my team rocks. I still had to sweat Terrell Owens and Fred Jackson, but in the end they came up short, thereby securing my victory in week one. The Brown-eyed Skidmarks are 1-0 and not looking back.

Prostitution is illegal. Strip tease is looked down upon. Waitresses let you see 65% of their entire breasts for a dollar tip. It's a well spent dollar, in my humble opinion.

My good friend Dean read something somewhere which stated you should try to chip with your bottom hand while playing golf. That is to say you should only have that hand on the club. It would be the right hand for a right handed golfer. The theory is that you will feel, directly, any incorrect movement that the hand may make. I decided to try it out while putting. Thank you Dean for the tip because I putted so well on Sunday that I am actually looking forward to playing again soon.

I want to thank all of my friends who had noticed that I was feeling a bit down. Your words of encouragement were needed and accepted. Sometimes even the lucky ones like to feel a bit of self pity, and I needed to be shown the light. I appreciate your honesty and thoughtfulness.

I wonder if the buy-in limits are ever going to go up here in Florida? If I have a vote, and I'm sure I do not, then I would vote for increasing the limits. Right now, as things stand, you can win $1000, and play with that money as long as you like, or at least until the casino closes. You cannot, however, win the grand one day, then go home, and bring the grand back with you and put it all on the table, at once, the next day. Does that make sense? I didn't think so.

It's almost time to hitch up my britches and play some poker. Wish me luck.

Codsey out.

Monday, September 14, 2009


I've been sitting here staring at a blank screen for about twenty minutes. I'm unable to find anything witty, cute, or even mildly amusing to write about. Instead, I can only ponder the events of the past week and the nothingness which still envelopes me.

Biloxi is a beautiful city. It is situated on the shores of the gulf of Mexico. I suppose it was at one time a sleepy fishing village before the casinos arrived. Once the casinos were built could a major hurricane be far behind? I think not.

Biloxi is being rebuilt. Slowly, but surely, new buildings and gambling halls are being constructed in the shadows of the carnage that is left following the the hurricane which nearly destroyed New Orleans. As you drive up and down state road 90, along the ocean, it becomes obvious that the south survives on grits and waffles as a Waffle House is located on each block.

My life revolves around the hotel room, the poker room, and the buffet of the Beau Rivage Casino. I did not once visit the gym, which is astounding I am told. I did not once visit the swimming pool, even though I had packed my swim suit. I did not once venture outside of the casino, except one night when I and two of my traveling companions visited a Hooter's Bar. The power had gone out in the casino and the poker room was closed. Hooters seemed like a good choice.

I played mostly cash games the past week. No-Limit Hold em is my game, and I think I must have no idea how to play. To Prevail Takes Apathy certainly does work, but I am too impatient. I have no discipline.

I took to wearing a rubber band on my wrist after I was reading a magazine article. The premise is to snap the rubber band really hard anytime that you realize you are having negative thoughts about anything. I think I may have to visit the doctor soon if my right wrist is infected, as I suspect it is, from the swelling and redness caused by repeated snapping of a rubber band against the exposed skin. My daughter says this action is one step away from cutting yourself. She is wise for her years.

It is odd that only a month ago I felt like I couldn't possibly lose at the poker table. I'm not sure how one's psyche can be changed and remolded into an aberration of it's former self, but change it can. I feel like a full fledged nut job. Constipation is a bitch.

Ex-Lax did not work. Soft Fruit is an old wives tale. The best way to fight the blockage is to never get blocked up in the first place. It is too late though.

Another magazine article that I recently read said that you should start each day by publicly announcing five things you are thankful for. It says it has something to do with getting your mind in a more positive place, which will then free you up to make good decisions. Sounds plausible, and honestly I could use something. So, here goes..

1. My Family
2. My Lifestyle
3. My Health
4. My New Found Marriage
5. My Improved Putting on the Golf Course.

There, that's five. It took me a while to think of those five things. Why is it so difficult to think of five things I am thankful for? I swear, something is wrong with me.

I played in a tournament while in Biloxi. There were 370 entrants, and they paid 36 spots. Well, actually they paid 37 spots because everyone decided to take $600 off the winners share of 27k and award it to 37th spot, or the bubble boy as he, or she, is affectionately known.

I finished 36th.

This is not too bad, really. I should be pleased that I was able to play solid, sound poker and wade my way through 90% of the participants. If you've never played in anything like this, and come that close to getting there, than I can't explain the disappointment I felt when I busted out in 36th place.

I wanted to die. I had my rubber band on, and I had been telling myself the entire day that I was going to win. "You're going to win", over and over I would repeat this to myself throughout the tournament. It began at noon, and I busted out at 12:30 AM. We had an hour for dinner at 6:30, and various ten minute breaks every couple of hours, but let me tell you, it was a struggle.

No one should have to do anything for twelve straight hours. It is inhumane. Even Micheal Vick's dogs only had to fight for a few minutes, at most. Ok, that probably wasn't a good analogy.

The cash games were brutal. At one pint I stopped looking at my hole cards. Yes, that's right. I played the hands out without looking at what I had. If I sensed weakness, and I thought the opportunity was right, then I raised. If I thought he had it, then I folded. I made money that day. Everything is Topsy turvey.

Have you ever met a multi-millionaire who brings a small mattress to the hotel so he doesn't have to get his own room? I have. It's all upside down and backwards.

Have you ever seen a man running out of a casino, with another man close behind yelling "stop him he stole my money!!", and the casino security doing nothing? I have. It's all whack.

For all of the freedom my job allows, and for all of the gorgeous hotels I get to visit, these are the days that make poker seem like a dirty word. These are the days that make me wish I had a normal job, with normal working hours, and a normal boss, and maybe a normal secretary with abnormally long legs.

If I had that normal job then I could be bitching about today being a Monday, and how I have the whole work week ahead of me. But that paycheck would be there on Friday, whether I did anything at work this week or not. That would be nice.

I could talk about the past weekend's football games, and tonight's football game, and whether Derek Jeter is the best baseball player in the game, and whether Obama's plan for health care is viable or not. I could discuss all of these things and still sit at my desk, in front of my computer, reading e-mails from friends concerned with the greenhouse effect and it's validity in todays socioeconomic world. That paycheck would still be there though, come Friday.

If I lived in that world, the normal world, then I could find many new things to be miserable about. It's quite possible that humans are meant to suffer, that it is our destiny, our purpose for life. Some would argue that our purpose is only to reproduce and ensure that our species prospers and lives on. But, maybe were are meant to suffer, and then die.

Like that old quote "Life's a bitch, and then you die". How prophetic of whomever wrote that one.

Yup, I'm miserable. If you see me, and you notice my wrist is red, please understand I am trying very hard to think positive thoughts. I don't wish to be morose. I don't wish to be negative. I sincerely want to upbeat and have fun at everything I do. It just doesn't seem to work. There is always someone, or something, which leads me to the dark place in my mind. Once there, deep in the pits of my thinking machine, it is like a vice. The dark place in my head does not like to let go. It grips me and pulls me ever deeper into the depths of despair, until I am sure there is no way out.

There is one thing that is generous and benevolent enough to allow me to see the light. Pocket Aces, you are my God. I bow to you and all of your glory. Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil as you, pocket aces, are my companion. Amen.

Beware of stray lightning bolts. Codsey out.

Friday, September 04, 2009

9.4.09 It's Time to Open Up

Here I sit all broken hearted
Had to poo but only farted
Things need to change before I hate
That which I wish is to unconstipate

Some of those more experienced have said try soft fruits
All banana and papaya and still only toots
The pressure is building and I will not lie
If relief does not come soon I may wish to die

Ex-Lax is only just a short ride away
Relief will surely follow by the end of the day
If the medicine don't work and I don't get no poo
There is only one thing left that I could possibly do

Nose to the grindstone always seems to fit the bill
I'll grunt and I'll fight and succeed I will
For even this nothing existence can't make me hate
As I wrestle with how to unconstipate

Codsey out.
Ps. I have to pack for Biloxi. I hope I have access to the web out there. If so I will post as I go. The Gulf Coast Poker Championships are starting today and I am late. Gotta go.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

9.2.09 Very Liberal of Me

The dealer nudged me in the arm and told me "it's on you, brainchild". I suppose I deserve things as this due to my constantly needling of the dealers at my local card room. I have become friends with many of them and they do not hesitate to take the opportunity to give some of it back.

I looked at my hole cards and saw the AQ. This is a very good starting hand, depending on your position at the table. Since I was not paying attention to the game I took a quick second to glance around and see who had bet. No one else had decided to enter the hand. I was in the small blind and everybody else had folded around to me.

Normally, in such a situation, with such a powerful hand, I would raise the big blind forcing him to either fold or commit more chips into the dead pot. He would fold here nearly every time, unless he was a kook, at which time he would call and hopefully lose his full $100 in the hand.

I took a good look at my opponent in the big blind. He had longish, almost hippy-like hair. He was wearing thick rimmed glasses with very thick lenses. I took a quick glance around at everyone else. I showed my AQ and mucked the hand pushing my two dollar small blind towards the dealer for her to take it away as the rake for this particular hand. You see, in Florida, the casinos and the state gets theirs on EVERY SINGLE HAND whether we want to play or not.

My opponent, in the big blind, commented to me that it was "very liberal" of me to give up the play of the hand like I did. Now, I don't know about any of you, but where I grew up calling someone liberal is tantamount to having sex with their mother. It may be really funny and cool, but it is certainly frowned upon by most people.

I said "Liberal"?!?!

"Well, not liberal in a negative way" he said as he sheepishly smiled at me to gauge my reaction.

I smiled back to him and as the dealer started throwing the cards to the players for the play of the next hand I added "I would consider myself more of a Libertarian. I mean, If I had to choose a party I think I would most closely align myself with the Libertarian's".

There were a few of the players who raised their heads and gazed at me, almost like they knew that was not all I was going to say on the subject. I was not there to disappoint, so on I drolled.

I dryly added "I'm the kind of guy who wants the government out of my business unless they are paving a road or training the army to defend my home". It was rather quiet after that one. I stopped talking because the play of the hand was in progress. I had folded my cards so I sat back and watched as the young kid in seat 8 snapped off the older gentleman in seat 4 as the six of spades hit the river completing the kid's flush.

Nobody was saying much and as the next hand was being dealt out I stated "I suppose they can get rid of the sewage, and maybe pick up the trash also." No one said anything. I quickly added "The government, I'm talking about."

That got a few laughs as some of them remembered what I had just been babbling about. I never said poker players were the brightest group of guys. Maybe they were all enthralled with the game at hand and wanted nothing of my political nonsense. I get that reaction a lot.

We continued to play on and I actually made a few hands and was building a nice stack. The table was fairly passive, as noted by their lack of any opinions on apparently anything except this poker game. I still tried to get them to open up a little bit.

I piped in during the deal of one of the hands "I guess we have to have universal education as well. I mean, you can't really deny someone an education just because they come from a destitute family, can you"?


No one said a word.

Never the defeatist I trudged onward. "I suppose we need a Police Force and Fire Department too." Still nothing. The dealer kind of looked at me and smiled. This conversation was not going anywhere.

I laughed out loud because even I was realizing how much money "my government" was spending, and the number was going higher and higher as I tacked on public services for all. "Wow! I'm spending money like a drunken sailor. I suppose that's what happens. Government just keeps tacking things on to their annual budget and before you know it the country is broke, busted, and looking for Wally to secure them a loan"!

That got a round of laughter. One guy added "That'll save us!" Wally is one of the guys who plays notoriously loose and wild poker and in the past has been known to need to borrow a few dollars here and there. He is a staple of the poker room in Jacksonville, and nearly everyone knows who he is. Finally, a reaction of some sort from these guys who were about as bland as a saltine cracker.

We continued to play on, dealer after dealer, half hour after half hour. My chip stack continued to grow and I was feeling confident again. Everything was going smoothly. I was looking forward to 6 PM so I could head for the house and start dinner for my apparently lovely family. It always amazes me how good everything can seem while I am winning at poker.

I received my second card from the dealer and looked down to see AK off suit. This is a pretty good hand. the game had loosened up during the day and I was sure someone would raise. Judging by these guy's ranges for the cards some of them raise with I was planning to re-raise with my AK and either take down some dead money or play the hand against one opponent.

No one raised. Almost everyone simply called the five dollar big blind. I think seven of us took the flop.

There should have been alarm bells going off in my head at this development. When looked at from an outside point of view it is easy to see that if I flop any kind of a hand with my AK it was most likely going to be a one pair hand. Albeit, it would be the best one pair hand, with a very powerful kicker, but one pair hands just usually do not win pots with seven players. That's just the way it is. Everyone knows it and I am far too experienced to make such an amateur mistake.

Make it I did though as the flop came out A-6-3, rainbow, meaning three separate suits. Three people checked to me and as I went to bet an Asian fellow two seats to my left throws out some money. I looked at him rather crossly and continued my bet. "Let me bet this for you" I said as I slid twenty dollars into the pot.

People bet out of turn ALL of the TIME in this poker room. Sometimes they do it to gain an edge, and sometimes they are just clueless and oblivious to what is going on around them. Usually, they are overvaluing their hand and do not want other people to play. Looking back on the situation today, and noting what ultimately happened, I see now that I was overvaluing my OWN hand.

This hand was getting away from me, and I was not happy that this very good starting hand was potentially in for a big fall. The hippy to my left called the twenty, and then the Asian went all-in for ninety-five dollars.

Everyone folded and it was back on me. I discounted the hippy's hand and assumed he would fold. Now what does the Asian have? Well, I didn't really think about it. This is problem number two with my play if this hand.

Problem one was getting into trouble when no one else raised pre-flop and I was unable to narrow or "thin" the field. Problem two was not taking enough time to realize I was beat here and needed to lay this hand down.

I did not, however, and when I called, and the hippy folded, the Asian immediately said "two pair", and I wanted to puke in my cup of now cold coffee. I did not improve and I lost a pretty good sized pot. I played this hand just like a freaking liberal. I wanted to spread the wealth, I guess.

These are the mistakes I have been making of late. They are basic. See, I have basically two rules in this poker room. One, they will not fold, so do not bluff unless I am sure it will work. Two, if they bet big they probably have the goods unless I have recently seen them bluff in a past hand.

I did not see this guy bluff in a recent past hand. In fact, I did not see this Asian do anything out of the ordinary. I should have taken a minute and figured it all out. Actually, I shouldn't have even needed a minute. This scenario was obvious, or it should have been obvious, to even the least accomplished player.

I'm sick to my stomach today and there is no Public Option medicine to cure it. When I make a mistake at work I don't get written up, and I don't get reprimanded. Usually someone will be telling me how they would have done the same thing and I just got a bit unlucky to lose that one. Yeah, right, thanks buddy. Your telling me it wasn't a bad play is NOT going to make me play this way all of the time. Nice try.

No, when I make a mistake at work it usually costs me a couple of hundred right out of my paycheck. Maybe some of you can understand how strongly I feel about those who have a cushy jobs, with tenure, their only fear is possibly having to work past their scheduled 4 PM quitting time. Some of them mentally and emotionally take years off from work but continue to get pay raises and vacations. I'd like to see them bring that attitude to my job.

I'm not bitching about my chosen profession. I'm whining about people who whine about their chosen professions. Corporate America made me hate my life, so I quit and struck out on my own. It may turn out to be a stupid move, but it was MY move.

The government can kiss my ass. Amateur hour is over. It's time, today, to make some bonus money. No more write ups and reprimands for this employee. Besides, I have tenure.

The Libertarian in me loves it.

Codsey out.