Saturday, June 25, 2005
The Five, no Six,wait-Seven. Crap! Eight . All the Bloggers you meet in Vegas.
There can be no overstating how lucky I am sometimes. First, there was the win of the WSOP WPBT Satellite providing the entry fee to Event 2 at the WSOP. Secondly, Noble came through at the last moment, just giving me enough time to get the money in before I left. Next, the First Mate agreed to shift our pre-booked vacation from Seattle to Vegas, move it up four days, and watch the swabs while I engaged in revelry with the blogger crew.
To top off the good fortune, there was the matter of meeting a lot of the Bloggers, playing cards, and drinking outrageously sized margaritas. When thinking about the trip, I envisioned meeting those who I had been reading for over a year. I had been fortunate enough to meet the South Carolina crew, Otis, Blood, G-Rob, Gamecock through the grace of proximity. The rest of the gang was a complete mystery. Is Iggy really a little person? Are the twins really twins (I actually knew they weren’t, but it was fun to think there was a chance they were)? Does Grubby look like the illustration on his site? Well, I got all those answers and more. (Except for the twin issue. I don’t remember seeing California April)
Others have described the trip much better than I ever could. Honestly, I spent so much of my time running back and forth from the Strip to Downtown trying to give the First Mate all the meager help I could, I missed out on a lot of the social time the others got. No complaints here though. The time I spent with all the Bloggers was incredible, educational, drunken, fun.
When compiling the list of “must meets,” the usual suspects abounded. I am sure my list was similar to most others, full of the better known crowd. Instead of seeking out those on my mental list, I decided to wing it. Whoever I met, I would meet. If I missed someone, well, there is always next time, isn’t there?
When I walked up on the Sushi joint, Felicia caught my eye immediately as she was waiting out front in a small group. I got off easy, but my buddy Tim, who was in town at the Hilton for a medical equipment convention, was accosted with, “Nice to meet you. You are gay, right?” To the best of my knowledge, Tim is not gay (he has a strong Natalie Portman fixation), but he took the comment in stride, and the joking manner in which it was intended. I took this opportunity to explain to Tim the significance of my visit to Vegas, revealing my secret identity as a Poker Blogger. Tim is a part of the Tuesday night crew and, even though I rarely write about any of them, I had been reluctant to tell them about my site. We do have two guys I would consider professional scribes in the group so there is probably some reluctance to expose myself to those who have a track record of good writing.
Anyway, I asked Felicia if I could sit by her at dinner so I could offer any paltry advice I had for her. She was on my pre-Vegas list and I was so happy to get to meet her so soon into the trip. The table was chock-full of writers that I had only passing knowledge of. I recognized Human Head of course due to the dome. His blog, I had read sporadically in the past. Those not on my link list, I usually only get to when I see an interesting comment in one of the regulars’ blogs or if they are mentioned in the writings of another. Well, the Head is now on my list and is a daily read. To be honest, his head is prodigious but I think it is just a tick smaller than mine. I’ve got big feet too. Know what that means? Big shoes. Also at the table was Joe Speaker, who I knew through his play. I had hit his site due to seeing him play in the past so well and immediately identified with his situation, raising children and trying to keep a spouse happy enough that they will continue to put up with poker degeneracy. Also there was the Poker Prof. I bet we were the only people that night in Vegas discussing the Rule against Perpetuities (See this movie for an entertaining explanation). Along with Mrs. Head, Bill Rini and a number of others, I rode a cross-town bus to the Strip after a confusing episode trying to get someone from the restaurant to order us a cab. Apparently, I looked like a cab driver and it took some hard convincing to persuade the lady that I needed a cab and was not there to pick everyone else up. While waiting for the ride, a solo lady stopped and offered to give seven of us a ride. Now, I have been known to give a ride to a soul or two who has given me enough of a sob story, but I rarely approach large groups of complete strangers to inquire if I can load them into my vehicle. I imagined two scenarios before turning down the offer for the group.
1. After piling in, the doors lock, a sheet of thick plexi rises up, locking us into the backseat. Off comes the wig of the driver, revealing a weasly looking identity confused, shifty eyed male, who looks at us calmly in the rear view and says, “So, where’d you think you were going?”
2. The lady has no wig but she looks Joe up and down, licks her lips and says, “MMMMM. Sugar bear is going to looooove you. The rest of you know what ‘sweatshop’ means, don’t you?”
Eventually, we decided to catch the bus ( I hope you have read the accounts of this experience already) and worked out way to the MGM where the rest of the crowd awaited.
Enough for now. Why waste time writing when there is poker to be played?